This Day in Dayton, 11 February

There surely was quite a stir in the area in February, 1828, when the band of some 265 (Tipton’s figure) Eel River Miami Indians arrived at Richardville Reserve to negotiate a treaty. This land was still owned by the Richardville family.) On February 11 the treaty was completed at "the Wyandot village, near the Wabash," by John Tipton, Commissioner, and the Eel Rivers. By this treaty, yielding to white pressure to obtain the land, the Eel Rivers retroceded their reservation on Sugar Tree Creek (present-day Sugar Creek) near Thorntown and agreed to return north to their former home on Eel River. They received in return payments and annuities. The following description of treaty negotiations in the late 1820s is taken from the introduction to The John Tipton Papers, compiled by Glen A. Blackburn. Perhaps the scene in 1828 at Wyandott was something like this: “At the meeting place preparations were made for feeding great numbers of people; droves of cattle and hogs were purchased for butchering; traders were instructed to attend with attractive selections of goods; barrels of whisky were imported; and every precaution was taken to satisfy the appetites and desires of the Indians.” Then by placating and lecturing, they persuaded the chiefs to sign.

This 1828 treaty with the Eel Rivers required the government to provide some services (including log houses, a wagon, oxen, horses, saddles and bridles, some fencing, and two paid workers for a limited time). It also provided that Peter Langlois be paid $1000 in silver and $3000 in goods, probably in payment of a debt to him for goods they had purchased. Langlois himself ("Pierre Langly") was a witness to the treaty. Langlois had been trading with the Eel Rivers for years (Tipton Papers). It makes sense for the Eel Rivers to come to a trading post he ran to negotiate a treaty, and Wyandott was such a post. At least one other local man made money from the treaty. Samuel McGeorge received $500 for five horses, bridles, and saddles he provided, and $300.00 for erecting a log house (Tipton Papers).


Susan ClawsonComment