We frequently passed the figure of a man, drawn on a blazed pine, with horns, giving the idea of an evil spirit. The occiput of the bear, and head bones of other animals killed in the chase, are hung upon poles at the water’s side, with some ideographic signs. The antlers of the deer are conspicuous. Other marks of success in hunting are left on trees, so that those Indians who pass and are acquainted with the signs, obtain a species of information. The want of letters is thus, in a manner, supplied by signs and pictographic symbols.
Late in the afternoon we passed the inlet of the Totogun—one of the principal forks of the Namakagun. The name is indicative of its origin. Totosh is the female breast. This term is rendered geographical by exchanging sh for gun. It describes a peculiar kind of soft or dancing bog. Soon after, we broke our canoe—stopped three-fourths of an hour to mend it—reached the forks of the St. Croix directly after, passed down the main channel about nine miles, and encamped a little below Pine River. We built ten fires to keep off the mosquitoes, and put our tent and cooking-fire in the centre. It rained during the night.
The next morning (Aug. 1st) we reached the Yellow River, and found the chiefs Kabamappa, Bwoinace, and their bands awaiting my arrival.
INCIDENTS ON THE SOURCES OF THE ST. CROIX AND CHIPPEWA RIVERS.
Council with the Indians at Yellow Lake—Policy of the Treaty of Prairie du Chien of 1825—Speech of Shaiwunegunaibee—Mounds of Yellow River—Indian manners and customs—Pictography—Natural history—Nude Indians—Geology—Portage to Lac Courtorielle—Lake of the Isles—Ottawa Lake—Council—War party—Mozojeed’s speech—Tecumseh—Mozojeed’s lodge—Indian movements—Trip to the Red Cedar Fork—Ca Ta—Lake Chetac—Indian manners.
1831. COUNCIL.—I pitched my tent and erected my flag on an eminence called by the Chippewas Pe-li-co-gun-au-gun, or The Hip-Bone. Accounts represented a war party against the Sioux to be organizing at Rice Lake, on a branch of the Chippewa River, under the lead of Neenaba, a partisan leader, who had recently visited Yellow River for the purpose of enlisting volunteers. He had appealed to all the bands on the head waters of the Chippewa and St. Croix to join, by sending their young men who were ambitious of fame in this expedition. Neenaba himself was an approved warrior who panted for glory by leading an attack against their old foe, the Dacotahs. It was still possible to arrest it or break it up. I wrote to the Indian Agent at St. Peter’s. A message was dispatched by Kabamappa to Chacopee and Buffalo at Snake Rivers, with directions to forward it to Petit Corbeau, the leading chief of the River Sioux. I determined to hasten back so as to meet my appointment with the large band of Mozojeed at Lac Courtorielle, and to