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E. E. Clement, Springfield, settled March 1, on the S. W. S.W. Q. of Section 1, Springfield Township.
D. D. Huff and his wife Anna settled April 26, on the S. E. Q. of Section 29, Hesper Township.
Peter E. Haugen came to Winneshiek county on the 12th of May, and settled on the N. W.Q. of Section 31, Decorah Township.
Simeon M. Leach and his wife settled on the 12th of May, on the S. W. Q. of Section 17, Canoe Township.
A. V. Anderson and wife, Parmelia, settled the first part of June, on the N. E. Q. of Section 24.
Torket Hansen and his wife, Sophronia, came to Winneshiek county about the 15th day of June, and settled on the N. E. Q. of Section 25, Decorah Township.
Christopher Evans settled the 15th of June, on the N. E. Q. of Section 32, Glenwood Township.
Iver G. Ringstad and wife settled in Madison Township on the 30th of June, on the S. half of Section 29.
Herbrand Onstine settled in Madison Township.
Helge Nelson Myran settled in Madison township, on the S. W. S. W. Q. of Section 8.
Ole M. Asleson and wife settled July 12, on the N. E. Q. of Section 8, Madison Township.
William Birdsall and his wife, Mary, settled on Section 28, Frankville Township, on the 13th of August.
Gulbrand Erickson Wig, settled in September, on the S. E. Q. of Section 36, Madison Township.
Gulbrand T. Lommen settled on Section 33, Decorah Township.
Ole Kittleson and wife settled on Section 17, Decorah Township.
Ole Toleffson Wig, and his wife, Thora, settled on Section 31,
Erick Olsen Bakke and wife settled on Section 5, Frankville Township. Nathan Drake settled on Section 7, Glenwood Township.
Rolland Tobiason and wife settled on Section 10, Springfield Township.
The Winnebago Indians; Our County and County Seat Named after theirChiefs; Early History of the Tribe; their career in Wisconsin; Removal to Iowa, in Winneshiek County; Fort Atkinson; the Chiefs Winneshiek and Decorah; the Grave of the Latter, and Re-interment of His Remains; Indian Traders and Whisky Selling; Bloody Tragedies; Indian Customs and Habits.
As our county and county seat have taken their names from the chiefs of the Winnebago Indians, it will be of interest, as well as of historic value, to trace the history of our historic predecessors on this soil, even though we have little clue, except by the remains left by the mound builders, of the races of the prehistoric ages of the past. It is now about two and a half centuries since the civilized world began to gain knowledge of the existence in the Far West of a tribe of Indians known as the Winnebagoes, that is, "Men of the Sea;" pointing possibly to their early emigration from the shores of the Mexican Gulf or the Pacific. Northern Wisconsin and the upper northwestern peninsula of Michigan were in early times inhabited by several tribes of the Algonquin race, forming a barrier to the Dakotas or Sioux, who had advanced eastward to the Mississippi. But the Winnebagoes, although one of the tribes belonging to the family of the latter, had passed the Mississippi at some unknown period, and settled upon the head waters of Green Bay. Some historians claim that they came from Mexico, whence they fled to escape the Spaniards.
Here the "sea tribe" as early, it is believed, as 1634, was visited by an agent of France, and a treaty concluded with them. The tribe afterward called themselves Hochungara, or Ochunkora, but were styled by the Sioux Hotanke or Sturgeon. Nothing more is heard of the Ouenibigoutz or Winnebegouk (as the Winnebagoes were called by the Jesuit missionaries, and the Algonquin tribes, meaning men from the fetid or salt water, translated by the French, Puants) for the next thirty-five years, although there is no doubt that the tribe had been visited, meanwhile, by adventurous Frenchmen, when on the second of December, 1669, some of this nation were noted at a Sac (Sauk or Saukie's) village on Green Bay, by Father Allouez. As early, at least as 1670, the French were actively engaged among the Winnebagoes trading. “We found affairs,' says one of the Jesuit missionaries, who arrived among them in September of that year, "we found affairs in a pretty bad condition, and the minds of the savages much soured against the French who were there trading; ill-treating them in deeds and words, pillaging and conveying away their merchandise in spite of them, and conducting themselves toward
them with insupportable insolence and indignities." The cause of this disorder, adds the missionary, "is that they had received bad treatment from the French, to whom they this year had come to trade, and particularly from the soldiers, from whom they had pretended to receive many wrongs and injuries.” It is thus made certain that the arms of France were carried into the territory of the Winnebagoes over two hundred years ago.
Two Jesuits who ascended the Fox river of Green Bay in 1670, at some falls about one day's journey from the head of the bay, discovered an idol that the savages honored, “never failing, in passing, to make him some sacrifice of tobacco, or arms, or paintings or other things to thank him, that by his assistance they had, in ascending, avoided the danger of the waterfalls that are in this stream, or else if they had to ascend to pray him to aid them in this perilous navigation." The devout missionaries caused the idol "to be lifted up by the strength of arm and be cast into the depths of the river, to appear no more" to the idolatrous savages. The mission of St. Francis Xavier, founded in December, 1669, by Allouez was a roving one among the tribes inhabiting the shores of Green Bay, and the interior country watered by the Fox River and its tributaries, for about two years, when its first mission house was erected at what is now Depere, Brown County, Wisconsin. This chapel was soon afterward destroyed by fire, but was rebuilt in 1676.
The Winnebago Indians by this time had not only received considerable spiritual instruction from the Jesuit fathers, but had obtained quite an insight into the mysteries of trading and trafficing with white men; for following the footsteps of the missionaries, and sometimes preceding them, were the ubiquitous French traders. It is impossible to determine precisely what territory was occupied by the Winnebagoes at this early date, farther than they lived near the head of Green Bay. A direct trade with the French upon the St Lawrence was not carried on by the Winnebagoes to any great extent until the beginning of the eighteenth century. As early as 1679 an advance party of La Salle had collected a large store of furs at the mouth of Green Bay, doubtless in a traffic with this tribe and others contiguous to them. Generally, however, the surrounding nations sold their peltries to the Ottawas, who in turn disposed of them to the French.
The commencement of the eighteenth century found the Winnebagoes friendly to and in alliance with France and in peace with the dreaded Iroquois. In 1718, the nation numbered_six hundred. They were afterward found to have moved up Fox river, locating upon Winnebago lake, which stream and lake were their ancient seat, and from which they had been driven either by fear or the prowess of more powerful tribes of the West or Southwest. Their intercourse with the French was gradually extended
and generally peaceful, though not always so, joining with them in their wars with the Iroquois, and subsequently in their conflicts with the English which finally ended in 1760.
In Shea's "Early French Voyages” there was printed a letter from Father Guignas, written May 29, 1728, at Fort Beaubarnois on Lake Pepin, on the upper Mississippi river, in which an interesting reference is made to the Winnebagoes. He says:
"The Sioux convoy left the end of Montreal Island on the 16th of the month of June, last year, at 11 A. M., and reached Michilimackinac on the 22d of the month of July. This post is two hundred and fifty leagues from Montreal, almost due west, at 45 deg. 20 min. north latitude.
"We spent the rest of the month at this post, in the hope of receiving from day to day some news from Montreal, and in the design of strengthening ourselves against the alleged extreme difficulties of getting a free passage through the Foxes. At last, seeing nothing, we set out our march the first of the month of August, and after seventy-three leagues of quite pleasant sail along the northerly side of Lake Michigan, running to the southeast, we reached Green Bay on the 8th of the same month at 5:30, P. M. This post is 44 deg. 43 min. north latitude.
"We stopped there two days, and on the 11th, in the morning, we embarked, in a very great impatience to reach the Foxes. On the third day after our departure from the bay, quite late in the afternoon, in fact somewhat in the night, the chiefs of the Puans (Winnebagoes) came out three leagues from the village to meet the French, with their peace calumets and some bear meat as a refreshment, and the next day we were received by the small nation, amid several discharges of a few guns, and with great demonstrations.
"They asked us with so good grace to do them the honor to stay some time with them, that we granted them the rest of the day from noon, and the following day. There may be in all the village, sixty to eighty men, but all the men and women of very tall stature and well made. They are on the bank of a very pretty little lake, in a most agreeable spot for its situation and the goodness of the soil, nineteen leagues from the bay and eight leagues from the Foxes."
When the English, in October, 1761, took possession of the French post at Green Bay, the Winnebagoes were found to number only one hundred and fifty warriors; their nearest village being at the lower end of Wennebago Lake. They had three towns, and perhaps more.
Their country at this period inclosed not only the lake, but all the streams flowing into it, especially Fox river, and afterward extended to the Wisconsin and Rock rivers. They readily changed the course of their trade--asking now of the commandant of the
fort for English traders to be sent among them. In the Indian outbreak under Pontiac, in 1763, they joined with the Menominees and other tribes to defend the British garrison at the head of the bay, assisting in conducting them to a place of safety. They continued their friendship to the English duriug the Revolution, by joining with them against the colonies, and were active in the Indian war of 1790-4, taking part in the attack on Fort Recovery, on the Maumee, in the present State of Ohio, in 1793. They also fought on the side of the British in the war of 1812–15, aiding in 1814 to reduce Prairie du Chien. They were then estimated at 4,500.
When, in 1816, the government of the United States sent troops to take possession of the Green Bay country, by establisha garrison there, some trouble was anticipated from the Winnebago Indians, who, up to that date, had the reputation of being a bold and warlike tribe. A deputation from the nation came down Fox river and remonstrated with the American commandant on what they considered an intrusion. They were desirous of knowing why a fort was to be established so near them. The reply was, that although the troops were armed for war, their purpose was peace.
of the Indians was an old one. "If your object is peace, you have too many men; if war, too few." However the display of a number of cannon that had not yet been mounted, satisfied the Winnebagoes that the Americans were masters of the situation, and the deputation gave the garrison no further trouble. On the 30th of June, 1816, at St. Louis, the tribe made a treaty of peace and friendship with the General Government, but they continued to lay tribute on white people who passed up Fox river. At this time a portion of the tribe was living on the Wisconsin river, away from Green Bay. In 1820, they had five villages on Winnebago Lake and fourteen on Rock river. In 1825 the claim of the Winnebagoes was an extreme one so far as territory was concerned. Its southern boundary stretched away from the source of the Rock river to within forty miles of its mouth in Illinois, where they had a village. On the west it extended to the heads of the small streams flowing into the Mississippi. To the north it reached Black river and the Upper Wisconsin, to the Chippewa Territory, but did not extend over Fox river, although they contended for the whole of Winnebago Lake.
The final removal of the Winnebagoes from Wisconsin to the westward, across the Mississippi soon followed. In 1829, a large part of the territory in southwest Wisconsin, lying between the Sugar River and the Mississippi and extending to the Wisconsin, was sold to the Government, and three years later, all the residue lying south and east of the Wisconsin and Fox rivers of Green Bay. And finally in the brief language of the treaty of November 1, 1837, (this tribe having become unsettled and wasteful). “The Winnebago Nation of Indians" ceded to the General Govern