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The Waupaca Chain o’ Lakes

 

INDIAN HISTORY SURVEY

 

 

The Lakes, Indian Archaeology and

History, Myths and Legends

 

 

 

By Charles Edward Brown

 

Secretary, Wisconsin Archaeology Society

 

Director, Wisconsin State Historical Society

 

Madison, Wisconsin

 

 

   

 

CHAIN  OF  LAKES,  WAUPACA,  WIS.

 

 

 

Published by

 

WAUPACA  CHAIN  O’  LAKES  ASSOCIATION

 

1931

 

E.A. Schmeltz, President

 

Thomas Hanna, Vice-President

 

J.E. Campbell, Secretary and Treasurer

 

 

 

 

 

 

(Transcriber’s Note:  This booklet is being made available to this site as of 2003 through

the courtesy of the WAUPACA  CHAIN  O’  LAKES  ASSOCIATION - Robert Kessler, Secretary)

 

 

 

 

 

NI-AQTAWA-POMI  

 

Last Menomini Indian Chief of the Chain o’ Lakes

 

 

THE WAUPACA CHAIN O’ LAKES

 

CONTENTS

 

1.       The Chain o’ Lakes – Physiography.

   2.    Place Names.

   3.    Early Maps.

4.        The Springs.

5.        The Ridges.

6.        The Menomini.

7.        Life and Industries of the Menomini.

8.        Plant Lore.

9.        Myths and Legends.

10.    The Trails.

11.    The Big Chain Lakes.

12.    The Little Chain Lakes.

13.    The Waupaca Lakes.

14.    The Survey.

THE CHAIN O’ LAKES

 

Physiography

 

            The Waupaca Chain o’ Lakes, located in the southwestern part of Waupaca County, in east central Wisconsin, is one of the most widely known groups of Wisconsin lakes. These lakes are situated about 4 miles southwest of the City of Waupaca, from which metropolis the most easterly lake of the Chain is approached by a broad concrete highway.

            These crystal and sea green lakes are located in a region once densely forested with deciduous and pine trees.  Because of their charm and beauty they have been referred to in advertising matter as “The Killarneys of America,” a not inappropriate designation.  No group of either Irish or Wisconsin lakes is fairer than these twenty-one niades of Waupaca County.

            The Chain lakes are strung out in a northeast direction their shapes and arrangement suggesting “so many flags or garments on a line, all fluttering and flapping in the summer breezes.”

            At the head of the lakes of the main or “Big Chain” is Taylor Lake, once known as Clem Lake, then following in regular order Rainbow and Sunrise, McCrossen, Round, Columbian and Long Lakes. Otter Lake, lying north of it, is attached to Taylor Lake by a stream.  Miner and Dake Lakes, twin lakes, which lie east of Columbian Lake, are connected with the Chain.  Pollys or Ottman Lake, a detached small lake, lies north of Columbian Lake.  Emmons Lake, situated a short distance southwest of Long Lake, is connected with this lake by Emmons Creek.

            In the so-called “Little Chain” there are eight pretty lakelets.  The first of these, Beasley Lake, is attached to the northwest shore of Long Lake.  Beyond it are Bass, Youngs, Orlando, Knight, Manomin (Mud), Pope and Marl lakes. The entire Chain o’ Lakes stretches out over an area 3-1/2 miles in length and a mile wide.

            Lying between the head of the Chain o’ Lakes and Waupaca are a small number of pond-lakes. Several others lie some distance north of the western lakes of the Chain.  At Rural, south of the Chain is Junction Lake.

            Dr. E.A. Birge and Chancey Juday say of the Chain o’ Lakes in their report on “The Inland Lakes of Wisconsin,” published in 1914:

            “The water flows from the northeast toward the southwest through the chain and the upper lakes are fed entirely by springs, there being no stream outlets.  The supply is barely sufficient to maintain a feeble current from Round Lake into Columbian.  Otter, Hicks (Sunrise), and Round lakes receive by far the largest amount of spring water.  Long Lake receives the waters of some springs, those of Emmons Creek, and the overflow of Beasley and Columbian lakes.

            “Six members of this chain, Otter, Beasley, and Long lakes being the exceptions, may be classed as marl lakes; marl deposits are more or less prominent in the shallow water and the bottom in the deeper water contains a large percentage of marl.  Also, the color of the water is the same as that of typical marl lakes, being a greenish blue in the shallow water and a darker green in the deep water.  The bottom deposits of Otter, Beasley, and Long lakes contain a much larger percentage of organic material and have a dark color.

            “Arbor Creek, the outlet of the entire group of lakes, has its origin at he south end of Long lake.  It is a stream of considerable size, being large enough to furnish power for a small mill.  It is a tributary of the South Fork of the Waupaca river and the latter stream is a tributary of the Wolf river.  These lakes, therefore, lie within the Michigan drainage basin.

            “The underlying rock in this lake district is Potsdam sandstone but it is covered by a rather thick layer of glacial drift.  The topography of the vicinity of the lakes is that of a pitted plain.  The pits owe their existence to the burial of blocks of ice during the glacial epoch and the subsequent melting of them.  These pits vary in size from small ones which are only a few meters in diameter to that of the largest lake.  Rising above the plain in this vicinity are a few isolated hills, some of which are 30m. (100 ft.) in height and perhaps a kilometer in length.  These hills are now well covered with drift, often carrying great boulders, and their topography suggests that they are remnants of a former upland whose surface was at or above the present level of their tops.

            “The late Wisconsin ice sheet extended about 25 km. (15 mi.) west of the lakes where the limit of its advance is marked by a terminal moraine.  It moved into this region from the northeast and its disappearance was not marked by a uniform retreat.  There are halts at certain points along the line at which smaller or recessional moraines were formed.  Such a halt was made along the east side of Rainbow and Hicks lakes, Maple Island, and the high shore along the east side of Rainbow lake.

            “The shores of all the lakes possess the usual steepness of pitted-plain basin.  Between the steep shores and the edge of the water in some of the lakes are narrow belts of grass or tamarack  swamp which serve as good illustrations of the encroachment of vegetation in lakes.  Otter lake is an excellent example of this type of shore; such conditions are shown also by Beasley, Bass and Youngs lakes, by a portion of the shore of Long lake, and by the four lakes at the head of Beasley Brook.  This abundant growth of vegetation along the shores contributes a great deal of organic material o the bottom mud, even in the deeper water.  The difference in the appearance and character of the water together with the fact that some of the lakes are still surrounded by forest, which gives them an appearance of wildness, adds very much to the beauty and attractiveness of this group of lakes.”

 

Place Names.

 

            In an address on the Indian history and remains of the Chain o’ Lakes region delivered before the Wisconsin Natural History Society at Milwaukee, in November 1900, Mr. Frank M. Benedict gave the Menomini Indian name of the Lakes as “Se-se-pe-comeow” and its significance as “sprawling water,” or “water that spreads out like an animal basking in the sun.”  This information he very likely obtained from Niyatawapomis (Ni-aqtawa-pomi), the old former chief of the Otter Lake village, whom he interviewed at Keshena.  The Potawatomi Indians of the Waupaca County villages are said to have referred to the lakes by the name of “Ba-ba-shote-et-teg-gin-bis-sen,” meaning “scattered water,” or “scattered group of lakes.”  The Chippewa also had a name for them  - “Wai-wai-ba-si-pi,” meaning “soon one after another” and referring to the manner in which one lake follows another in a chain or series.  From the nature of the several appellations we may judge that the early Indians were, like the pioneer settlers and the present summer inhabitants of the Lakes region, impressed with the interest, and perhaps beauty, of the Chain o’ Lakes.

            If not the originator of the present significant name of Chain o’ Lakes given to these lakes, and by which they are widely known, Mr. Benedict did more than anyone to advertise and to popularize it.

            The Menomini name Waupaca Mr. Benedict gives as meaning “the place of clear water.”  Henry E. Legler, in his article on Wisconsin Place Names, gives its meaning as “white sand bottom.”  Other writers interpret it as “pale water,” “white water,” or “crystal water.”  William Powell, the fur trader, states that the name means, “the dawning of the morning,” or daybreak.  He says that the French endeavored to interpret it by calling the river which bears it “To-morrow River.”  It will be noted that nearly all of the foregoing interpretations endeavor to indicate that the river was one of clear water.  One appears to compare it with the brightness of the dawn.

            John V. Satterlee, the Menomini sage, expressed the belief that the name is Wa-pa-kaw or Wa-pa-ko-ho-na-wok, “one brave young hero.”  It no doubt refers to the Indian cemetery at Marion, Waupaca County.  The local Woman’s Club erected a boulder marker over his grave in 1926.

            The Menomini names of some of the lakes of the Waupaca Chain are given elsewhere in this report.

 

Early Maps.

 

            Wisconsin maps of the years 1835 to 1850 do not show the Chain o’ Lakes.  This is singular because their presence was known to fur traders and other white men for nearly a century, and to the Indian for a much longer period of time.  The Waupaca River appears on Capt. Thomas J. Cram’s map of 1842 but the remainder of the county is a blank.  The lakes do not appear on some maps of as late as 1853 and 1854.

            I.A. Lapham’s map of the state, published at Milwaukee in 1853, locates the Chain o’ Lakes but provides no name for them.  They do not appear on his maps of 1846 to 1852, nor on Colton’s map of 1851.  They are present on the Railroad Map of Wisconsin, published by Rufus Blanchard at Chicago, 1857, but are unnamed.  They are not shown on several other maps of this year.

            On Henry Kemshall’s map, published at Milwaukee, 1857, the lakes are located but unnamed.  They appear on Farmer’s Township Map of Michigan and Wisconsin, 1857, a very detailed map.  Silas Chapman’s maps of 1854, 1856, 1860 and 1861 show the lakes, but no names for them appear.

            C.M. Foote’s Plat Book of Waupaca County, 1889, gives to Taylor, Rainbow and McCrossen Lakes the name “Chain Lakes.”  Otter and Round Lakes bear the same names which they bear today.  Long Lake is called “Big Lake,” and Miner and Dake Lakes bear the name of “Clear Lake.”  The lakes of the Little Chain are not named.

 

The Springs.

 

            Some of the old men among the Menomini, who in former days knew the Waupaca Chain o’ Lakes region, stated that one of the reasons why some of their people were pleased to camp in this country of spring-fed lakes was because of its many clear springs.  Particularly appreciated by both the natives and the pioneers were the well-known springs on the north shore of Sunrise (Hicks) Lake, others on the north and west shores of Round Lake, at Beasely Brook, on the waste shore of Long Lake, and in the vicinity of (north and west) Knight and Pope Lakes.  One of the springs the Indians believed to possess medicinal virtues.

            These Indians had some interesting beliefs and superstitions about springs.  Some are believed to be the abodes of spirit bears.  They are easily angered and sacrifices of implements, food, clothing, dogs and of other possessions were formerly made to them.  Tobacco was also cast on the surface of the water to retain the good will or to obtain the blessings of these deities.  The boiling or bubbling of a spring was considered to offer certain evidence of its being spirit inhabited.  An Indian once poked a long pole down into one of these springs and directly a great flame of fire shot upward nearly scorching the frightened offender.

            Bears were “the recipients of special reverence among the Menomini and are not killed without a ceremony and apology.  Bones of bears are scrupulously collected that they may not become food for dogs and are deposited in running water.  The skull is hung in a tree in a clean place in the woods.”  (Material Culture, 176).

            So far as known no Indian stone, bone or other implements have been recovered from any of the springs about these lakes.  This may be due to the fact that but few, if any, have ever been searched for such evidence of former Indian religious practices. Several of the “sacred” springs on the shores of Lake Poygan have yielded large numbers of bone and other implements, animal bones, etc.

            The Winnebago, former neighbors and friends of the Menomini, say that springs are doors through which animals enter the spirit world.

 

The Ridges

           

            Short distances both north and south of the Chain o’ Lakes are short ridges or hills the character of which is noted in the introductory chapter of this report.  Most of these are of an oval or elongated form.  These were formerly or are still covered with forests.  Those south of the Chain are named Fox and Cemetery Ridges, Rural Hill, Ben Lomond, and Pilot Peak.  Situated north of the lakes are Doe Hill, Seesee Foothill, and Summit Hill.  Three others are located a short distance northwest of the lakes of the “Little Chain.”

            The Menomini well knew these ridges and their hunting or scouting parties sometimes camped on some of them.  On Fox Ridge quite a number of flint arrow and spear points have been collected.  Cemetery Ridge is occupied by the farm and cemetery of the Wisconsin Veterans’ Home.  A trail from the lakes traversed or passed this ridge in its southward course to the South Branch of the Waupaca River.  This is thought to be the place where a mythical lacrosse game between the relatives of the Menomini culture here Ma-nabush and the Thunderers, or Sky People, may have once taken place.  It was a hotly contested game.

            Some hills were also believed to be sacred places, being the residences of good or evil spirits whom the old time Indians reverenced or feared.

           

 

  

MENOMINI  INDIANS

 

The Menomini.

 

            The name of this Wisconsin Indian tribe is derived from two native words, meno (mino), good, and Min, a grain or seed.  Their name for their tribe was Omano-minewak, wild rice men.  By the French they were called Folle Avoine referring to the fondness for wild rice.

            In prehistoric time these Indians migrated from their ancestral home in the St. Lawrence valley probably reaching the wild rice district in the Upper Michigan peninsula and northeastern Wisconsin before their kinsmen, the Chippewa, Potawatomi and Ottawa.  In this region they were first encountered by a white man when Jean Nicolet, a French explorer, the first to reach Wisconsin, visited them in 1634, at the mouth of the Menominee river, and was there entertained by them.  Their later territory “comprised all of the land drained by the Menominee, Wolf and Fox rivers, which all pour their waters into the Green Bay of Lake Michigan.  Their territory had an extent of about seventy leagues (210 miles) north and south, fifty by sixty (150 and 180) from east to west.

            In 1831 the Menomini ceded to the United States a large tract of land extending from the northern point of Door County southward to Milwaukee, this land being east of Green Bay, the Fox river and Lake Winnebago.  In 1836 they ceded another large tract extending along the west shore of Green Bay and the west bank of the Fox River.  In 1848 they ceded a third territory which extended from the northwest corner of their present reservation in a southwesterly direction to the Wisconsin River, just below present Stevens Point.  Here it crossed the Wisconsin and continued to the Yellow river.  It passed down this stream to the Wisconsin river and ran in a southeasterly direction to Portage.  It followed the Fox river in a northeasterly direction to Lake Poygan, then followed the Wolf river northward to the place of beginning.  Included in this cession was the region of the Waupaca lakes.

            The early neighbors of the Menomini were the Dakota (Sioux) and Chippewa, occupying the region north of them in northern Wisconsin and Michigan; the Potawatomi in Door County and along the Lake Michigan shore; the Mascouten or Prairie Potawatomi at Milwaukee, the Winnebago on the shores of Lake Winnebago, and the Fox along the Fox river.  Of these tribes the Chippewa, Potawatomi and Dakota occasionally occupied parts of the large Menomini domain, but the latter held it for two hundred years after the appearance of the first white man in Wisconsin.

            The Menomini were never a very numerous tribe.  Their number in the earliest days of their history was from 1,600 to 1,900.  In the year 1718 the number of their warriors is given as 80-100, in 1761 as 150, and in 1820 as 600.  The present number of Menomini is 1928.

            The Wild Rice People were never a very warlike tribe. They were generally on the best of terms with the French, British and Americans in Wisconsin.  Major Zebulon Pike (1810) described the Menomini men as “being straight and well made, about the middle size; their complexions generally fair for savages, their teeth good, their eyes rather large and languishing; they have a mild but independent expression of countenance that charms at first sight.”

            Major Irwin wrote of the Menomini in 1820 that in the spring they subsisted on sugar and fish, in the fall on wild rice and corn, and in the winter on fish and game.  In 1832-38 they were growing corn at all, or nearly all of their villages on the Menominee, Oconto, Fox and Wisconsin rivers.

            In 1848, previous to their moving to their present reservation, there were some twenty bands of Menomini located at Escanaba, on the Menominee, Oconto and Peshtigo rivers, on the shore of Lake Poygan, on the Wisconsin river, at Skunk Hill in Wood County, and elsewhere within their territory.

            Of these bands  the one located at he Chain o’ Lakes, under the leadership of Ni-aqtawa-pomi, were the Shakitok.

            The Powahe-kune-Tusi-niniwug (rice-gathering people) lived on the shore of Lake Poygan.  Here they had sugar camps and gathered wild rice.  Pwa-a-con-nee (Poygan) means a place for threshing wild rice.  The Wi-skos Se-peo Wini-niwuk, Wisconsin River people, lived on the banks of that stream.  From their name Wisconsin is derived.  Wi-skos or Wi-skons, means a little muskrat house.  The Noma-Kokon Se-peo Tusi-niniwug, Beaver river people, had a village near Winneconne (Wni-ka-ni, a skull).  They had other villages at Fond du Lac and Oshkosh.  On the upper waters of the Wolf river were the Muhwa-o Se-peo Winni-ni-wuk, or Wolf river people. 

            Freeman Dana Dewey mentions that Sho-nah-a-nee (Shu-nien, silver?) was the chief of the Winneconne village.

            A.J. Lawson mentions that there were a thousand Menomini Indians encamped at New London and vicinity when the first whites came to that locality.  No doubt he has greatly overestimated their number.  (3 Wi. Hist. Coll., 478).

            In early days of settlement and before groups and numbers of Menomini of all these bands and villages were always passing over the trails which lead north and south and east and west through the Chain o’ Lakes region.  Mr. John V. Satterlee states that these lakes and the region about them were always known to the members of his tribe as a good hunting ground.  They had some ponies but many traveled on foot.  They often camped about the lakes for months while engaged in fishing, trapping and hunting.

            In early settlement days the Potawatomi are also reported to have had six villages in Waupaca County, these being located near Clintonville, Symco and Big Stone.  Some of these tribesmen also knew and occasionally visited the Chain o’ Lakes region.

            In 1852 the Menomini bands removed to the reservation near Shawano provided for them by the Government, the different bands, some of them pagan and some of the Catholic, establishing themselves along its different streams.  This reservation consists of ten townships, some 360 square miles or 230,400 acres.  It is located about 35 miles northwest of Green Bay and 38 miles northeast of Waupaca.

           

 

 

 

Life and Industries of the Menomini

 

            The dress of the early Menomini was simple but interesting.  The favorite headdress of the Indian men was a broad headband consisting of a strip of otter or other fur ornamented with a few eagle or other feathers.  Roaches or crests made of dyed deer’s hair were also worn.  To these an eagle feather was attached by means of a bone or antler roach-spreader.  Shirts were of tanned deerskin, often dyed brown with butternut juice, the front ornamented with designs or figures in colored quills.  Long deerskin leggings, fringed along one edge, were tied to the waist by a thong.  Necklaces made of animal claws, shells or other materials were worn.  Moccasins were made of deerskin.  In the hot weather of summer a deerskin breechcloth, supported by a thong or strip of skin and moccasins were probably the only clothing.

            The women wore a waist, skirt, leggings and moccasins.  The waist was a tanned deerskin with a hole cut in it for the head.  It had no sleeves.  It was ornamented with quillwork.  The skirt consisted of a square piece of the same material wrapped around the body.  It was ornamented at the sides.  The skin leggings were short reaching only to the knee.  They also wore necklaces, probably made of shells, seeds, etc.

            On occasions of ceremony and mourning both men and women painted parts of their faces.

            The introduction of cloth, beads and sliver jewelry by the fur traders added greatly to the beauty of the Menomini costumes.

            The summer dwelling of these Indians was a quadrangular house with a ridged roof built of upright poles and covered with strips of elm or cedar bark.  The bark covering was held in place by poles tied across it on the outside.  The winter lodge was dome shaped affair consisting of arched poles tied at their tops with bark strips.  Horizontal poles tied to the sides added to the firmness of the structure, which was covered with cattail matting.  Both the summer and winter lodge were rain-proof.  Both had a single doorway on one side closed by a piece of deerskin, a fur hide or blanket. Cedar bark or rush matting covered the floor of the wigwam.  In the center was the fireplace, a shallow hole lined with stones.  Over this the kettle was supported on a green cross-bar supported by two crotched sticks.  The smoke from the fire escaped by a hole in the roof.  In some lodges low couches built of poles and covered with robes or blankets provided beds and seats.  Clothing, household utensils and other articles were hung from the wooden framework of the wigwam.

            The food and medicines of the Menomini are discussed in other chapters of this monograph.

            The work of the Indian women consisted of the preparation of food, the tanning of skins and making of clothing, the weaving of reed, cattail and cedar bark mats and fibre bags, the making of bark and plant fibre twine and rope, weaving of seines for fishing, making of bark dishes and other receptacles and the making of pottery vessels.  The men engaged in canoe-making (both birch bark and log canoes), making of wooden bowls, ladles and mortars, feather cases, fire-drills, traps and snares, cradle-boards, musical instruments, snowshoes, articles for games and ceremonies, pipes, and bows, arrows, clubs and spears.  They were an industrious people.  Indications are that at an earlier date the Menomini men also engaged in some copper smithing.

            Most important of the religious societies of the Menomini is the Mita-win, or Medicine Lodge.  “Admission is by purchase, often to fill a vacancy caused by death, and the initiation is the dramatization of the origin myth in which the candidate plays the leading role.  The chief feature is the pretended slaying and bringing to life of the candidate, which is the symbolic presentation of the belief that all so initiated will be reincarnated in the Hereafter.”  Other organizations are the Dreamers, the Witches’ Society, the Wa-bano Cult and the Je-sako Cult.  Among their dances are the war dance, victory dance, scalp dance, harvest dance, rain dance, begging dance, tobacco dance, Shawano dance and woman’s dance.  Their musical instruments are circular drums, water drums, tambourine drums, flutes or flageolets, whistles and gourd and other rattles.

            Among the games played by the Menomini are lacrosse, snow snake, ice arrow, shinny, rolling hoops, throwing sticks, moccasin game, jack-straws, cup-and-pin, dice, kicking game, foot racing, archery, and wrestling.  Some of these “were played for the dual purpose of honoring the gods and of curing the sick, amusement being secondary.  Such games are the perquisites of important deities, and are held only to gain their good graces.  Lacrosse is the property of the Thunderers.”

            The Menomini were a peace-loving people but when they attacked, or their country invaded, they were able to offer a stout resistance.  They assisted the French in their wars with the turbulent Fox Indians and other Wisconsin tribes in their fights with the Dakota or Sioux.  Under the leadership of the brave Charles de Langlade they participated with other Wisconsin and Michigan Indians in Braddock’s Defeat in western Pennsylvania in 1755.  When war was declared messengers were sent out over the trails to the various villages and their warriors aroused.  Before these set out on the warpath the war-bundle was unwrapped, its sacred contents displayed and a ceremony held. Attacks on the enemy were generally made before dawn.  To dispatch a foeman was to gain the right to wear an eagle feather.  Scalps were taken as trophies these being afterward stretched on a hoop.  On the return of the war party a victory or scalp dance was held.

            These Indians disposed of their dead by wrapping the body in birch bark and burying them in shallow graves.  Logs were placed on the graves to protect the bodies from wild animals.  Some bodies were placed on scaffolds or in trees.  Anciently these people also interred some of their dead in earthen mounds.  The present day pagan Menomini erect small wooden shelter houses over their graves.  In the front of these there is an opening in which food may be placed for the use of the spirit on its four-day journey to the Otherworld.  There are ceremonies at the wigwam and at the grave. The mourners blacken their faces with charcoal.  The death song is sung.  The souls of enemy warriors whom he has slain are appointed to accompany the soul of the deceased as its servants.

            Grave posts were placed at the graves.  On these were painted the totem animal (upside down) of the dead and marks indicating the war honors won by him. The dead were arrayed in their best garments.  Formerly utensils and weapons were buried with them.

 

Plant Lore

 

            The knowledge which the Menomini possess of the uses of native plants, shrubs, vines and trees for foods, medicine, dyes, perfumes, cordage, fibers and for other purposes is extensive.  Many of these plants are found in the woodlands about the Chain o’ Lakes.  The natives gathered and made use of these when residing on their shores.

            Among the plants used for food were wild rice, arrowhead, swamp milkweed, bergamot, water cress, groundnut, wild onion, wild leek, yellow water lily, marsh marigold, New Jersey tea, wild strawberry, blueberry, gooseberry, raspberry, blackberry, ground cherry, May apple, nannyberry, wild grape, elderberry, choke cherry, black cherry, hard maple (sugar), staghorn sumac (Indian lemonade), oak (acorns), hazelnut, hickory and butternut.  Those which were used as medicines were Jack-in-the-pulpit, skunk cabbage, butterfly weed, honeysuckle, fleabane daisy, sneezeweed, goldenrod, wild lettuce, wild geranium, wintergreen, pipsissewa, Solomon’s seal, bellwort, water lily, nightshade, willow herb, maidenhair fern, brake, wild rose, partridge berry, angelica, Virginia creeper, touch-me-not, pine, and witch hazel.  Dyes of various colors were obtained from sumac, alder, bloodroot, bittersweet, touch-me-not, crowfoot, butternut and sorrel.  Fiber plants were dogbane, nettle, common milkweed, cattail, bulrush, and basswood.  Native tobacco was made from sumac (leaves), bearberry (bark) and dogwood (bark).  Wood betony furnished a love charm.  There were many uses of birch bark and the barks of other trees.  Flowers, leaves, stems, roots, seeds and fruits furnished material for many children’s games and toys.  Bows and arrows were made of ash wood.  Butternut was preferred for the making of log canoes.

            “The gathering of roots and herbs for medical use is always attended by placing tobacco in the holes from which they were dug, which a song or a prayer for Earth Grandmother, whose hairs they are.”  (Material Culture 67).

 

 

 

 

Myths and Legends

 

            A Menomini myth of the origin of their tribe states that, “in the mystic past the Great Under-ground Bear and its mate came out of the earth near the mouth of the Menomini river and there assumed human guise, becoming the tribal ancestors. Later they were joined by the Thunderers, the beaver, black bear, crane, wolf, bald eagle and others,” also in human form.  From these mythical animals the members of each gens are descended.  They have come to believe that the actual animals were their fore-fathers.  (Material Culture of the Menomini, p. 46).

            “The daughter of Noko-mis, the Earth, is the mother of Ma-nabush, who is also the Fire.  The Flint grew up out of Noko-mis, and was alone.  Then Flint made a bowl and dipped it into the earth; slowly the bowlful of earth became blood, and it began to change its form.  So the blood was changed into Wabus, the Rabbit.  The Rabbit grew into human form, and in time became a man, and thus was Ma-nabush formed. Ma-nabush was angry because he was alone on the earth; and because his enemies, the ana-maq0ki-u, who dwelt beneath the earth, were constantly annoying him and trying to destroy him.”  (12 B.A.E., p. 87).

            He prepared a weapon by shaping an axe out of a piece of flint.  This he rubbed on the surface of a rock to smooth and sharpen it.  He was joined by Moquai-o, the Wolf, who became his brother.  He was drowned while hunting in crossing the ice of a lake.  Thereafter Ma-nabush built a large fire to which were guided by its light, his uncles and aunts, who were also children of Noko-mis.  Thus he was no longer alone. Ma-nabush, the culture hero of the Menomini, had many interesting adventures after that.

            Various animal and other deities came from several directions to bring Ma-nabush necessary powers to aid his uncles and their descendants.  Among these were Owa-sse, the Bear; Wabon, the Daylight; Masse-na, the Turkey; Kuku-kuu, the Great Owl; Mikek, the Otter; Keso, the Sun; the North Wind; Ina-maqki-u, the Thunderers; A-sa-nikaq-ki, the Small Eagle; Ki-tshe-Waqdose, the Eagle; Wabaq-ke, the Bald-eagle, and Maqkwa-nani-u, the Hawk.  All brought gifts which contributed to the welfare of mankind.

            The Menomini believed the earth “to be an island, floating in an illimitable ocean, separating the two halves of the universe into an upper and lower portion, regarded as the abode of the benevolent and malevolent powers, respectively.  Each portion is divided into four super-imposed tiers, inhabited by supernatural beings, the power of whom increases in ratio to their remoteness from the earth.  In the highest tier above the deity to whom all others are subordinate.  The testimony of early writers is unanimous that this being was the Sun.

            “Beneath the supreme being, in descending order, some say clustered about a cylindrical opening in the heavens, are three tiers of bird-like deities.  First, in the empyrean, come the Thunderbirds, gods of war.  Associated with these, in some manner not apparent, is the Morning Star.  Next comes the realm of the Golden or War Eagles, and the White Swan; and last, in the stratum which touches the earth, birds of all species, headed by the Bald Eagles and various hawks, kites, and swallows.  All of these birds, regardless of stratum, are servants and messengers of the Great Spirit, any existing species named being thought to be earthly representatives of the Thunderers.

            “Beneath the earth, there is, in the lowest tier, the Great White Bear with a long copper tail, who, in addition to being the chief and patron of all earthly bears and the traditional ancestor of the Menomini tribe, is the principal power for evil.  He has, as a servant, a mythical hairless bear.  Next in ascending order, is the great Underground panther, who figures extensively in the demonology of the Central Algonkian and Southern Siouan tribes.  He is represented on earth by the panther and the lynx.  Next is the White Deer.  Last of all, close to the earth, and often visible to its inhabitants, is the Horned Hairy Serpent, so generally found in North American mythology.

            “The earth itself is peopled by a myriad of fantastic hobgoblins.  Cannibal giants dwell in the icy region of the north; a malevolent living skeleton, with death dealing eves, haunts the forests after night fall.  Similar to him, but less terrible, is a mysterious person bearing a sacred bundle upon his back, who, like the Wandering Jew, is doomed to travel ceaselessly in expiation of some forgotten sin.  A race of pygmies inhabits remote rocky fastnesses.  A well-disposed elf smites people on the head with a soft war club, causing sleep.  Flying heads and skulls, of varying intentions toward the race of men, exist; and there is a mysterious man who follows and molests belated travelers.

            “Rocks, ponds, and hills have their fancied denizens.  All species of animals are ruled by supernatural chiefs, mostly dwelling underground, and these, with the Powers of the Underworld, show themselves on earth from time to time.  In swamp-holes, lakes, and rivers, under waterfalls, and in lonely hills may be found stray horned snakes, bears, panthers, and in modern times, dogs, hogs and horses.

            “Wringing their living from the reluctant earth filled with such marvelous and often dangerous beings, menaced by the imaginary forces of the Underworld, what wonder that the earliest traceable religious observances among the Menomini and their neighbors are those of propitiation and supplication of the Evil Forces!” (Material Culture of the Menomini, 29-33).

 

Oh-say-ge Invasion

 

            The following interesting tradition of the Chain o’ Lakes Country was related by old John Tomau (Wa-sa-yoh) descendant of a line of Menomini chiefs, who died at Keshena on January 17, 1931.  Long, long ago when the Menomini or a band of the tribe were peacefully occupying the Chain o’ Lakes Country at Wapa-kaw a party of Oh-say-ges (Osage) came north from their country, near the present location of Milwaukee, on a hunting expedition.  The appearance of these stranger hunters in this Menomini hunting ground led to a quarrel and a fight.  The Menomini, assisted by the power of their war bundles, and by the Thunderers, who came to aid them, worsted and drove away the intruders.

            Some years later a stronger party of Oh-say-ges entered the same region and another battle took place.  The results of this conflict were that the Menomini met defeat and left the region the Oh-say-ge warriors holding it for several years.  Then came Black Hawk and a band (of Foxes) from the Mississippi river region to take possession of this good hunting country.  Then the Menomini mustered their own warriors, and with the aid of friendly neighboring tribes, attacked and drove both of them away, and thus regained possession of one of their homeland areas.

            This tradition is interesting though there may be some doubt as to its historic reliability.  The Osage were an important Siouan people related to the Omaha, Ponca, Kansa and Quapaw. Marquette’s map of 1673 locates them “apparently on the Osage river,” in Missouri.  In 1714 they assisted the French in defeating the Fox Indians at Detroit.  They were enemies of the Illinois.  In the years 1721 to 1756 parties of Osage occasionally appeared at the villages at Kaskaskia and Cahokia.  They may have wandered much farther north.  The Menomini are reported to have conducted a raid against the Osage.

 

Corn

 

            An old Indian had some corn which he kept carefully hidden away from everyone in a corner of his lodge. That was before the Indian people knew anything of corn or of its great food value.  One day, while he was away on a hunting trip, his nephew, who was very curious to learn what this package might contain, took it from its hiding place.  Opening it he threw some of the kernels on the embers of the wigwam fire. When heated these exploded one after another with a loud noise and fell on the wigwam floor.  His uncle, who was returning, heard the noise. When he saw what had happened he was very angry. After beating the boy he threw him out of the smoke-hole in the wigwam roof.  The boy lay on the ground.  His uncle, who was a powerful medicine man, caused it to snow and storm.  It covered the boy who slept beneath the white mantle for ten days.  Then he woke up, entered the lodge and killed his uncle.  He inherited all of his uncle’s possessions.  Then he gave to all mankind for their use the previous corn.

 

Tobacco

 

            The Menomini claim never to have cultivated the native tobacco plant.  Their substitutes for tobacco were the bark of the red willow and dried sumac leaves.  This was their ki-nik-inik.  According to one of their myths tobacco was procured for the Indian people by Ma-nabus.  He instructed them to catch “great numbers of grasshoppers and cause them to spit out the tobacco they were chewing.”  This was a liquid but they kept it until it hardened.

 

The Water Monster

 

            Ma-sheno-mak was a water monster with the form of a giant fish who overturned canoes, caught unwary swimmers and fishermen and dragged his victims to the bottom of a lake or stream and there devoured them.  He was responsible for the disappearance of many Indians.  Ma-nabush was at last appealed to by his people and he determined to destroy the monster, if possible.  Locating his lair he allowed himself to be swallowed.

            In the body of the huge fish he found his brothers the Bear, the Deer, the Porcupine, the Raven and the Pine Squirrel.  All had been made captive and swallowed like himself.  Ma-nabush had his singing sticks with him and he began to sing his war song and to dance.  His brothers joined in the dance.  As they danced round and round in his body the monster began to reel.  As Ma-nabush passed his heart he thrust his knife into it once and then three times. Now the big fish began to quake and to reel more and more violently.  Ma-nabush now said, “Ma-Sheno-mak take me to my wigwam.”  Then all became unconscious.  When Ma-nabush awoke the monster was dead.  He cut a big hole in his side and through this he and his brothers escaped to their wigwams.

            Indians say that in the old days a favorite luring place of this gigantic fish was in McCrossen Lake. This water bore a bad reputation because when a wind was blowing from the east or the west through its entrance channels its negotiation by canoe was dangerous.  This some white canoeists also know.  Ma-sheno-mak was always on hand to seize the unfortunate.

 

The Wild Man of the Woods

           

            Once, years ago, when a party of Indians were camping near one of the springs at the Emmons peninsula at Long Lake a boy left his father’s wigwam and went into the woods.  He had with him a bow and arrow as he wished to try his luck at killing some small animals.  He wandered in the direction of the tamarack swamps.  In the depths of the swamp he soon became lost.  Night came on and when he did not return his parents were greatly worried.  They feared that Tshipe, the wild man or ghost of the woods had carried him away.  Search for him failed to find the boy.  They called his name but he did not hear them.  In the morning some hunters found him deep in the forest and far from camp.  He was lying behind a big rock, and frightened almost to death. All through the night he had wandered about the swamp and forest, often falling over logs and brush.  He heard the cries of the Wild One, always following his trail.  At last exhausted from his fear and exertions, he found and sought the shelter of the big stone.  He was pleased when the hunters guided him to his father’s rush covered wigwam, which he had never expected to see again.

 

The Trails

 

            Mr. Benedict has located on his very informative map of the Chain o’ Lakes region, published in 1896, the several important overland Indian trails which passed through it.

            One of these, the Wisconsin River to Lake Poygan trail, a travelway which many thousands of moccasin-clad feet have passed over in the course of several centuries, his map shows to have come from the Waupaca River about 2-3/4 miles northwest of the Lakes.  From the Waupaca River this trail to the Menomini Indian villages on the shores of Lake Poygan in Winnebago County pursued a southeasterly curse to the southern shore of Lake Ottman (Pollys Lake).  On its way it passed the eastern ends of Big Rock Ridge and Knight Hill and the eastern end of Amy Lake.

            From the south shore of Lake Ottman its course was eastward, between this lake and the north shore of Columbian Lake. At the northeastern angle of the latter it turned southward running between this lake and Limekiln Lake, crossing the water connection between these lakes at the well-known Indian Crossing. From this ford it continued southward east of the eastern shore of Columbian Lake to the western end of Dake Lake.  From this place it ran in a southeasterly direction past the western end of Rural Hill and through the location of the present village of Rural its course paralleling Arbor Creek.  Beyond the village, its direction unchanged, it forded the Creek a short distance east of the outlet of Junction Lake, its direction being thereafter toward Lake Poygan.

            A trail from Portage on the Wisconsin River to Lake Shawano near the boundary of the present Menomini Indian Reservation entered the Chain o’ Lakes region about three-fourths of a mile west of Emmons Lake. From this place it followed a general northeasterly direction crossing Big Spring Brook and Badger Brook and the north shore of Youngs Lake, and uniting with the Wisconsin River-Lake Poygan trail just west of Lake Ottman.  This trail it followed to the south side of the Indian Crossing. Here it turned eastward passing the north shore of Miner Lake and the south shore of McCrossen Lake.  From here it continued eastward to the Chain o’ Lakes to Waupaca highway.  The course of this modern concrete highway follows rather closely the course of this old trail to the location of the present city of Waupaca.

            A Wisconsin and Wolf River trail via Waupaca Falls, branches from the Wisconsin River-Lake Poygan trail a short distance south of the Waupaca River, northwest of the Lakes.  In its eastward course it passed the northern shores of Brundage and Silver Lakes, then continued on toward Otter Lake.  Northeast of this lake it followed rather closely the highway running eastward to Waupaca.

            At various places along the courses of these three Indian travelways through the Chain o’ Lakes region are places where the aborigines once had villages or camped for short periods during both prehistoric and early historic time.

            The State Land Office maps of the Chain o’ Lakes region show a trail which turned southward from the Shawano-Portage trail, already described, at about opposite the Wisconsin Veterans Home property (about midway between the centers of Sections 34 and 35 of Farmington Township) and continued southward through Sections 3 and 2 of Dayton Township to the South Fork of the Waupaca River, then continuing on in a southeasterly direction. In its southward course this trail must have passed over or around the western end of Cemetery Ridge of the Home grounds.  This map does not show the Shawano to Portage trail as continuing westward between McCrossen and Miner Lakes to the Indian Crossing.

            The State Land Office map shows two trails which left the Wisconsin to Wolf River trail at the northeastern angle of Sunrise (former Hicks) Lake.  The southerly of these trails ran westward through Sections 27 and 28 of Farmington Township and to near the center of Section 32, about one-half mile north of the “Little Chain” lakes. The northern of these two trails ran northwest for a sort distance and then turned westward through Sections 27, 28 and 29, and westward from the latter locality.  It passed just south of Silver Lake.  For a distance of nearly two miles these two trails were not more than a quarter mile apart.

            The State Land Office map does not show the trail leading from the Waupaca River to the south shore of Lake Ottman (Pollys Lake), or the trail leading from the same place in a southeasterly direction to northeast of the head of Otter Lake, both of which appear on the Benedict map.

            In addition to these trails there were minor trails or paths which followed the shores of the lakes of the “Big Chain” connecting the camp sites on their shores with each other.  Short lengths of some of these trails can still be seen in several woodlands about the lake.  One is one the E.E. Browne property (Greenwood Forest) on the shores of McCrossen and Round lakes.

            The Menomini Indians made constant use of numerous trails which crossed their extensive domain in every direction.  A trail used for ordinary travel between camping grounds or villages was called “Anan-Me-he-con.”  “Pa-pay-Me-he-con” was the name given to a trail used by hunters or hunting expeditions.  A party of men and women traveling from one camp ground to another would bear packs on their backs, the women transporting their babies on a cradle-board (tike-nagun) suspended from their shoulders.  The men carried their bows or guns, lances, a fire-steel, and their blankets and robes.  The provisions carried consisted of ground corn mixed with deer tallow and seasoned with maple sugar or wild honey.  The rate of progress was about six miles a day.  Camps were always made near springs.  Thus fresh water was readily obtained when wanted.  Wild animals came to the springs and could be killed and an addition thus made to the food supply.  Boiling springs were avoided as they were believed to be the abode of malevolent beings or animals.  When ponies came into use trail travel was easier and greater progress could be made.  When night travel was thought necessary torches made of tightly rolled sections of birch bark were carried.

            A war party on a trail was preceded by scouts (Wau-pon-no-wock).  Among these were seers or prophets. These possessed small wooden images which warned them of approaching dangers.  A partisan carrying the war bundle, which contained sacred charms and amulets designed to bring success to the party, marched ahead of the warriors.

            “While traveling at night Indians sometimes see, meet, or are followed by ghosts.  The spirits may attempt to force the Indians to accompany them as they roam about, but this can be prevented by tearing off a piece of rag, or even one’s clothes, burning it to ashes and rubbing it on the forehead.  The smell of the ashes is not obnoxious to the spirits, but makes them think any one with this odor is one of themselves, and they accordingly leave him alone.”

            “A system of blazing forest trails was once in vogue among the Menomini, but has become almost extinct.  I have seen them break over young saplings and bushes, inkling the fallen tops in the direction the party was taking for the benefit of anyone coming behind.  The condition of the leaves – fresh, wilted or dried – helps mark the elapse of time as well.” (material Culture of the Menomini, 59, 209).

            Old residents of Tustin, on the north shore of Lake Poygan, remember the coming of groups of Menomini Indians over the old trail from the Waupaca lakes to the wild rice fields and sugar bushes on the shores of that lake.

 

 

RAINBOW  LAKE

 

 

THE  BIG  CHAIN  LAKES

 

Taylor Lake

 

            Taylor Lake is the first, the most easterly lake of the Chain o’ Lakes. It is the fifth of these lakes in size, with a water area of about 50 acres.  Although not the largest of the lakes it is the most interesting both archeologically and historically.  Indian remains, both prehistoric and recent occupy nearly every foot of its shores.  The important Indian trail from Shawano Lake to Portage on the Wisconsin River passed its southern and eastern shores.

            Mr. Benedict’s map of the year 1896 names this lake Clem Lake, the name of Taylor Lake being given to another smaller lake located about a mile east of it and les than a half mile southeast of the Waupaca highway.  On the south shore of Taylor Lake evidences of former Indian occupation are at first met with at Glenwood, a lake shore subdivision extending eastward from the eastern boundary of the Wisconsin Veterans’ Home grounds to the Edmund’s boat livery.  Summer cottages occupy this entire stretch for a distance of several blocks. This flat sandy land, elevated but a few feet above the waters of the lake, was once an Indian camp ground, probably only an extension of the village site located on the Home grounds.  Telltale fireplace stones, flint and quartz rejectage, clam shell fragments, fragmentary animal bones and other Indian camp refuse may still be seen in many places on cottage lots and elsewhere in this district.

            Circular pits, probably once in use for the storage of food, occur in a woodland on the south side of the east and west street.  Here also is a remnant of a small, low round mound.  Mr. Edmunds, Sr., filled in several other Indian pits near his boat livery when he platted the surrounding land as “Mound Park.”

            Other pits occur in a woodland pasture lying on the south side of the Waupaca highway, opposite Glenwood.  Several of these we excavated.  They were found to be somewhat conical in shape, 4-1/2 to 5 feet deep, and showed indications of having been lined with bark.  They were about 3-1/2 feet in diameter at the surface of the ground and were filled with leaf mold. A few charred acorns were at the bottom of one.

            A small marshy tract at the boat livery, now partly filled in, separates the Glenwood site from a similar Indian site on the Taylor farm property east of it on the eastern shore of Taylor Lake.  This was probably the most extensive and richest Indian village site in the Chain o’ Lakes region.  In the course of years all of its interesting features have been obliterated in the cultivation of the land, the construction of the Waupaca highway, and in other ways.  Indications of this former Indian metropolis may, however, still be seen in the fields on the east shore of Taylor Lake.  Fireplace stones and flint chips and fragments are scattered over them.  Mr. Benedict informed the writer in 1903 that years ago the sites of the former wigwams, marked by fireplace stones, burned earth, charcoal and ashes, and the workshops of the aborigines by nearby areas over which the flint nodules, chips and spalls of the arrowmaker, and the stone refuse of the axemaker, were to be seen in these fields.  Broken and burned fragments of animal bones, partly decomposed clam shells, and fragments of pottery vessels indicated where the garbage dumps of the village had been.  This evidence the plow and harrow have long ago scattered and otherwise disposed of.

            Members of the Taylor family, Mr. Benedict, and others have in past years collected many Indian implements from this site.  Only a partial list of these artifacts can be given.  It includes grooved stone axes, celts, hammer stones, clubheads, balls, notched sinkers, grinding stones, smoothers, anvil stones, mullers, hoes and scrapers.  Many hundreds of arrow and spearpoints, scrapers, perforators, knives and blanks made of flint of a variety of kinds and colors of quartz, quartzite, rhyolite, and chalcedony have been found.  Other stone objects collected were pendants, gorgets, beads, a discoidal and pipes of several forms.  Articles made of native copper were not common, those found here including several spearpoints, a knife, awls, beads and a pendant.  A few shell and bone implements and ornaments were recovered.  No entire pottery vessel was obtained but pottery fragments were common.

            In Mr. Austin Taylor’s small collection, made in recent years, there were nearly 150 flint, quartz, and quartzite arrow and spearpoints, scrapers and perforators, and in his son, Mr. Floyd Taylor’s collection, about 25 specimens of the same kind and a leaf shaped copper knife or blade.

            Mr. Carl Brunn of Waupaca recently possessed a hoe blade made of grayish-white flint from this site.  This was 5-1/4 inches long and its blade 3 inches wide.  Both surfaces of this implement were polished probably through use.  Mr. John J. Knudsen has a string of the rather large porcelain beads obtained by the Indians from white traders and called “pony beads.”

            The cut banks of the highway in front of the Burgoyne cottage, at the southern extremity of this village site, yielded chips and flakes of white, gray and pink flint, clam shell valves and pieces of reddish brown rock-tempered, cord-marked pottery.  On the opposite (south side) of the highway this site extends into a cultivated camp refuse similar to that on the Taylor farm. The potsherds collected are similar to those obtained near the Burgoyne cottage.

 

The Mounds

 

            On and near the east shore of Taylor Lake there were a large number of Indian mounds, 45 in all, these being on the Taylor and former Benedict and Lee properties, most of them on or near the village site, described.  These earthworks Mr. Benedict locates on his map.  He briefly describes them in an article printed in “A Standard History of Waupaca County,” published by the Lewis Publishing Company, Chicago, in 1917.

            “Here on the level tract of land comprising the farms of Mort Taylor, Hans Erickson and F.M. Benedict, lying at the head of the celebrated Chain of Lakes, we find indications of a once populous city.  There are altar mounds, mounds for cremation, burial mounds, where dead were almost hermetically sealed in a small mound made of cement made of marl and sand before the earth was piled above all, and which have done their work of preservation so well that an entire skeleton was disinterred from one, mounds and pits that formed the foundation of dwellings; and monuments of earth of various forms erected, probably, to the memory of some persons or events of importance.

            “One of these lies with head and arms in Mound Grove near Mr. D. Taylor’s house, the body extended E.N.E. for sixty rods.  Still others, round or oval form, have head, tail, and four arms or legs.  There is a series of oblong form; here, a row of pits.”

            In a paper read by him at a meeting of the Wisconsin Natural History Society, at Milwaukee, on November 10, 1900, Mr. Benedict said:

            “There are in the vicinity seven oblong mounds, the largest being forty feet in length.  Others are 16 and 20 feet long. Their direction is east northeast and west southwest.  They extend in a more or less continuous line from the north bank of a marsh lying to the east of a bluff upon which were the mounds with the enthroned burials.  This marsh of a few acres connects with a chain of lakes, and no doubt was itself a lake when the mounds were built.

            “At the east end of a long mound was unearthed the skeleton of a woman.  The burial was in a fold position.  The teeth, except those in front, were gone, the jaw, perfectly smooth where the molars had been.  The most interesting mound was a “man” mound.  It was 400 feet in length, 16 feet in general width, and 6 feet in height.  The arms had a spread of 48 feet.  This mound had been partly reduced by cultivation.  Its direction was east northeast heading west southwest  parallel with the old trail, now Home street or highway.  This mound connected by its length the mounds on the bluff and marsh with those along the southeast bank of Clem or Taylor Lake.” (Milwaukee Sentinel, November 11, 1900).

            Another mound he described as stratified, or constructed of several layers of earth.  Ashy layers were among these.  In another mound a “crematory altar” was found.  This probably was a rude heap of stones showing evidence of fire and surrounded by charcoal and ashes.  Such “altars” in mounds are evidence of a fire (probably sacrificial) ceremony which took place at the time when a burial was made, and not of a human cremation.

            These Taylor Lake mounds were at short distances from each other, and, for convenience of description, may be considered as three distinct mound groups.  Mr. Benedict provided the names for these – “Mound Grove Group,” “Highway Group” and “Xerxes Hill Group.”  The Mounds Grove group, originally consisting of fifteen mounds, followed the curve of the Taylor Lake bank on the Taylor property, known as Mound Groves. Of this once fine group of prehistoric Indian monuments seven mounds remain.  The group consisted of eleven round and oval mounds and four linear mounds. The round mounds were from 20 to 40 feet in diameter.  The highest were about 7 feet high. The linear mounds were 25, 36, 90 and 96 feet in length and from 14 to 30 feet in width.  The catfish effigy on this property is considered to be a member of the Highway group rather than of this group.

            One of the mounds in the Mound Grove group Mr. Benedict described as having contained a “cyst burial.”  The skeleton was seated on the original surface of the ground, facing the lake.  It was surrounded by a “cement” composed of marl or carbonate of lime from the bed of the lake, mixed with sand.  Over this interment was erected a round mound 7 feet high at the time of its excavation, in 1881.  On its top stood a gnarled black oak or pin oak.  A few broken flint points were within the outer mound.

            The Highway group, located a short distance east of the Mound Grove group, consisted of 24 mounds.  Of this number 13 were round mounds, 8 were linear and 3 turtle effigies.  Of these only one of the latter, a catfish type effigy, remains.  These mounds stretched along the highway for a considerable distance, some being on either side of the road or partly in it.  Most of these mounds were destroyed when the Waupaca Electric Railway line to the Lakes was constructed.

            These turtle effigies had a body provided with a more or less distinct head, four projections (two on either side of the body) to represent legs, and a long or short tapering tail.  They occur in various mound regions in southern Wisconsin, being once particularly common in the Rock River valley.   As a matter of fact only two mounds in the Highway group were of this type, the other effigy being a catfish type effigy.  This catfish effigy has a horn on either side of its head. It has no limbs.  It has a long tapering tail (widest where it joins the body and tapering to a point).  This mound was 250 feet long, the distance between the points of its long curved horns was 50 feet, and the width of its body just back of its horns was 29 feet.  The lengths of the curved horns are 15 and 18 feet.  A part (about half) of the tail of this effigy has been destroyed in the adjoining cultivated field.

            This mound, located within a few feet of the edge of the highway, was marked with a bronze tablet mounted on a native boulder, by the Monday Night Club of Waupaca, during the Home Coming, in August 1913.  Dr. Reuben Gold Thwaites, secretary of the State Historical Society, delivered the unveiling address.

            Located on the top of a hill, a short distance south of the Waupaca highway and of the Highway mound group was the group of 6 effigy mounds which Mr. Benedict named the Xerxes Hill group.  Of these mounds 3 were animal shaped mounds representing quadrupeds and 3 were of the turtle form.  This knoll has long been in operation as a gravel pit and every vestige of the mounds has been long destroyed.  It is a great pity that prehistoric works of such significance and public interest could not have been spared.  Were they present today they might be set aside in a county preserve.  They would be visited, no doubt, by hundreds of visitor to the Waupaca lakes.

            Mr. Benedict stated that these turtle and quadruped effigies contained “enthroned” burials.  “A step was cut in the brow of the bank and the burial seated facing the west. A small mound was erected over the body and an “altar fire” burned on the mound.  A large turtle mound was built over this structure.  The earth employed was different from the surrounding earth and must have been brought from a distance.”  (Paper published in the Milwaukee Sentinel, November 11, 1900).

            No plat of this mound group appears to have been made.  The location was a prominent one, overlooking the ancient Chain o’ Lakes trail.  The effigies were deities.  The turtle played a not unimportant part in the Menomini mythology. Turtle figures formerly appeared on grave posts, on woven bags, on bark receptacles and on other Indian articles.  These earthen shrines were probably believed to provide protection to the inhabitants of the nearby village against the Evil Ones.

            We excavated one of the mounds located by the side of the Waupaca highway, at a distance of about 32 feet west of the Burgoyne cottage.  The Messrs. John Knudsen, Floyd Taylor and Clare Taylor assisted in the work of exploration.

            This mound was 34 feet in diameter and 5 feet high.  It was constructed of sandy surface soil so compacted as to make its digging quite hard.  At a distance of 18 1-3 feet from its western edge, at the base of the mound, a small mound of blackened sandy soil was encountered.  This mound was 36 inches in diameter and about 6 inches in depth at its middle. This proved to be a firebed.  In the burned and blackened compacted sand composing it were ashes and charcoal and among these many burned fragments of human bones, small fragments of a cord-marked pottery vessel (also showing the effects of fire), and a single rudely fashioned notched arrowpoint made of white flint.  Pieces of a skull were with the bones.

            It was evident that we had encountered a cremated burial, such as have been found by Mr. Benedict and others in past years in excavating other mounds in this vicinity.  The particular interest of this example of aboriginal cremation is the fact that this was evidently a cremation of a bundle re-burial bone burial rather than of an incineration of a body in the flesh.

            We learned that in the removal in recent years of two conical mounds located a few feet west of our mound the bones of seven burials were found at the base of one.  The other mound contained no burials.

            On the north shore of Taylor Lake on the Wrolstead property, once known as the “Camp Ground,” there is a group of six round and oval mounds.  Four of these mounds extend in an irregular east and west line.  These are in the rear of a group of cottages, being 60 or more feet back from the lake bank.

            The mound at the western end of the line, a round mound, is 17 feet in diameter.  About 60 feet east of it is an oval mound with diameters of 30 and 17 feet.  Nine feet beyond this is another oval mound with diameters of 32 and 16 feet, and 8 feet east of this a third oval mound with diameters of 30 by 18 feet.  About 60 feet southeast of this mound there is a small round mound 12 feet in diameter.  None of these mounds are very prominent.  They are from 2 to 3-1/2 feet high.  An oak tree about 2 feet in diameter is growing on the middle of the round mound at the western end of the line of mounds. Pine trees of good size are on the oval mounds.  About two hundred feet east of the oval mound, at the east end of the line of mounds, a remnant of a badly mutilated round or oval mound is found by the side of a garage.

            These mounds are located on an Indian camp site.  The finding of flint and quartz chips and flakes, of fireplace stones, and several pieces of ornamented pottery fragments, in the road and in bare spots among the cottages clearly indicate this.  A few flint points have been found.  There are also several circular pits in the pine grove in their rear.  Mr. Benedict stated that there were in this vicinity “two pits five feet deep and sixteen to twenty feet across.  They may have been used for house foundations.”  These pits were in 1903 15 feet in diameter and 3 feet deep.

            This resort is approached by a road along the shore of Taylor Lake.  On its east side is the lake swamp with a variety of trees, large ferns and other marshland growth.  Ice ramparts border the road.  The eastern boundary of the resort is the outlet of Otter Lake.

 

Lake Nymphaea

 

            In the rear of the Taylor farm buildings a tract of low, swampy land with a growth of young pine and other trees stretches northward to the shores of a pond to which Mr. Benedict gave the name of Lake Nymphaea.  In a gravel pit on his own farm, near the shore of this “lake,” which he excavated in 1899, Mr. Benedict found a chipped flint celt and a number of fragments of a pottery vessel.  No burial was found near these.  This pit was on the edge of a marsh later partly filled in.  Lake Nymphaea drains into a bay on the north shore of Taylor Lake and to which Mr. Benedict has given the name of “Calla Bay” on his map.  A few flint implements have been found in the fields near Lake Nymphaea.

 

Otter Lake

 

            This is a long, narrow lake lying in a northeast and southwest direction, its southern extremity being connected by a stream with the north shore of Taylor Lake. Its water area is only 14 acres and its greatest depth is 40 feet.

            Its Menomini name is mikek (otter).  This animal was venerated by the Indians of this tribe because of his supposed supernatural powers.  According to one of their myths the mink, otter and muskrat played prominent parts in rescuing the earth from the depths of the sea during a great flood.  On ceremonial and other occasions the most valued headdresses worn by the men are fillets or bands of otter fur.  These are ornamented with hawk feathers.  The otter has an important connection with the rites of the Medicine Lodge.

            Otter Lake, more or less completely surrounded by woodlands and marshes, has always been a favorite lake for fishermen and hunters.  It was a favorite lake of the Indians, who, in pioneer days and before, erected their wigwams about its shores.  On the north shore of the lake there is a marshy area 40 or more feet in width.  About the same distance to the north of the lake is a sandy cultivated field of the Affeldt farm, this being elevated at least 30 feet above the marshland.  Here the hearthstones and other debris of a former camp site are scattered about.

            A narrow strip of woodland separates this site from the richer Indian village site located east of it in the cultivated fields of the former F.M. Benedict farm and to which he gave the name of “Aurenymphae,” and which appears on his map.  In a description of this village site he says:

            “Near the clear springs of Otter Lake seems to have been the residence center.  Here the earth is full of pottery, variously ornamented.  Sixty different varieties have been preserved from this locality, while all around were implements of flint, polished stone and copper.”  (Standard History of Waupaca County).

            He himself collected from this former Indian camp ground numerous flint, quartz and quartzite arrow and spearpoints, knives, scrapers, perforators and blanks, also axes and celts, hand hammers and other of the heavier types of stone implements, bone awls, and a large number of ornamented potsherds.  Some iron axes, spearpoints, harpoon points, awls and glass beads and other materials obtained by the natives from white traders or storekeepers were also recovered.

            A recent visit to this site found scattered fireplace stones still very numerous here.  The greatest concentration of these was on a small point of land adjoining a swampy kettle hole on the northern edge of the site.  Some of these burned angular stones were as large as a human head.  Although this site has been greatly disturbed by cultivation, chips and fragments of flint and quartz may still be collected.  The flint is of gray and pink colors.  We obtained here a barbed white flint point, a broken flint blank and a hammerstone.  Mr. Carl Brunn formerly had a collection of flint points, scrapers and drills collected here.  Some of the points were made of light brown quartzite.

            Mr. Benedict reported the presence on this site of eight refuse heaps, these being located along its eastern and northern edges.  In his address given to the members of the Wisconsin Natural History Society at Milwaukee, in November 1900, he said of these:

            “This refuse was in some cases of sufficient amount to slightly raise the surface.  The materials composing these heaps consisted of bones, ash and charcoal.  Mingled with these were potsherds and fire-cracked stones.”

            Doubtless these were pits or refuse dumps filled to overflowing with the camp kitchen refuse of the village.  Scattered tracers of these (bits of unio shell and bone fragments) remain.

            He also stated that:

            “At two points on this village site were common grave burials. In one was found a “marble” of quartzite, a few flint arrowpoints, and a bone knife 8 inches long and ¾ of an inch wide.  The other graves also contained “ordinary” burials.  The right parietal plate of one skull was broken, as if by a club or stone.  Its owner had evidently survived this blow as bony matter had filled and knit and bulged around the break.”

            This village had a planting ground or grounds, as one might expect.  Mr. Benedict said:

            “Corn hills were located on the plain in the southwest quarter of Section 36.  These were on the east side of Otter Lake near the village site.  The hills were broad and flat.  On this planting ground stand giant oaks 150 years old.  The previous forest was of Norway pines.”

            Some of these garden beds remain.  They are in a pasture field on the edge of a cultivated field.  Three beds are here, the others having been destroyed in the farm land.  Their general direction is north and south.  The largest of these beds is 125 feet in length.  All are from 3-1/2 to 4 feet in width and from 6 to 8 inches high.  The paths between them are from 2 to 2-1/2 feet wide.

            At a distance of about 350 feet west of this planting ground, on the edge of the Otter Lake marsh, there is a wigwam site on a small point of land recently under cultivation. Here were found white quartz chips, spalls and broken nodules where some early Indian had engaged in arrow making while encamped here.  White quartz was a favorite material of the Menomini for arrow making.  In the forest which separates this site from the planting ground there are some large pine trees, survivors of the original pine forest which stood here in Indian days.

            We possess no information concerning the identity of the earliest inhabitants of the Otter Lake village.  The character of their pottery and of some of the implements which they left behind indicates that they were Algonquins, like the Menomini. They may have been Chippewa Indians, but it is more likely that they were members of some early Menomini band.

            There was a Menomini Indian village here when the first white settlers came to the Waupaca region, in 1849.  It had been there, according to Indian information, for years, or for many years before.

            Ni-aqtawa-pomi (Nyawopomy or Niyatawopomis) was the head chief of this Otter Lake village.  Mr. Benedict obtained this information from him at Kenshena, on the Menomini Reservation, where he died in 1898.  Dr. W.J. Hoffman says that he was in 1896 the second chief, or war chief, of the Menomini tribe, Niopet Oshkosh being the head chief.  He was, with Niopet and Chickeny (Ma-tshi-kineu), a member of the Indian court.  He describes him as “a man of steady habits and influence, and one in whom the tribe had every confidence.”  He was then also the acting leader of Sha-kitosks band, one of eleven divisions or bands of the tribe.  (14 Ann. Rep. Bu. Am. Ethno.)  A portrait of him appears in this report.  (p. 50 [of original book])  When a resident of the Chain o’ Lakes region Ni-aptawa-pomi was the chief, or had jurisdiction over the Menomini who camped at the Falls of the Waupaca in present Waupaca.  The older Menomini speak of him as a leader of distinction.

            The number of Indian inhabitants of the Otter Lake village, in the late forties, varied in different years from a few families to a hundred or more people.  Other members o this Waupaca band camped in other places about the lakes, returning to this site from time to time.

            John V. Satterlee interprets Ni-aqtawa-pomi’s name as meaning, “a brave man, a hero.”

 

Durant Place

 

            An early Indian camp site was located on the Ed. Durant farm on the north shore road a short distance northeast of the Ayrenymphae site near Otter Lake.  The owner of this farm has collected numbers of flint arrowpoints and several stone celts from the field son both sides of the highway. Those on the south side of the highway border on a marshy area which probably once provided good muskrat trapping.  Fireplace stones are scattered over the fields.  The old northshore trail to Waupaca passed over these lands.

 

Rainbow Lake

 

            On the west shore of this largest of the Chain o’ Lakes from the Caws cottage southward to Hill Crest cottage there is a forest of young oak and other trees.  The lake banks are high rising 25 feet above the water in some places.  Near the Caws cottage a few flint points have been found and a few fireplace stones occur in the nearby fields.  No doubt other indications of former Indian occupation will be found when the woodland soil is disturbed. At Point Comfort and Oak Park, the most southern points on the west shore of this lake, are a number of pretty summer homes.  The southern bay of Rainbow Lake Mr. Benedict designated on his map as Nessling Lake.

            At Grand View, a large summer resort hotel property on the south shore the traces of a former Indian camp ground are almost totally obliterated by the presence of the hotel buildings.  However, a few hearthstones and flint, quartz and quartzite rejectage may still be seen in gardens, paths and other places free of sod.  This location is a prominent bluff, the top being elevated at least 35 feet above the water. Along the shore and bank are a cluster of tall pines that add to the present attractiveness of this locality.  Three Pines Point extends into the lake at the western limits of this property.

            The extensive and beautiful grounds of the Wisconsin Veterans’ Home occupy the southeast shore of Rainbow Lake and a portion of the south shore of Taylor Lake.  On these grounds Mr. Benedict and other archeologists found indications of a former Indian village site. Where the Home buildings and cottages now stand and elsewhere on these grounds collectors of Indian implements have in past years picked up stone axes, handhammers, slate ornaments, copper points, and flint implements.  Some of these were in the Benedict collection.  Dr. E.J.W. Notz found a notched pebble sinker during a visit some years ago.  Not all traces of this Indian occupation have vanished.  We found in several bare spots on the lake bank, about half a city block east of the water tank, a handful of flint chips, several potsherds and hearthstones.  Doubtless similar rejectage is here hidden beneath the grass roots.  At this place the lake banks are from 20 to 25 feet above the water.

            Where the ice house now stands on a point Mr. Benedict found Indian refuse heaps consisting of animal bones, clam shells and other refuse mixed with earth.  Potsherds and broken implements were also in these.  He kept no record of the dimensions of these kitchen middens.  He gave the name “Lake George” to the part of the lake into which this point extends.

            This locality was a favorite stopping place of the Menomini when they passed over the Waupaca trail.  A small group of these people years ago camped in a wooded ravine at the western limits of the Home grounds.  The new hospital fronts on this ravine, which has recently been filled in.  One of their dead was buried here the grave being protected by stones and brush.  These people were engaged in hunting and trapping.  For their wigwams the ravine was a sheltered spot.

            Mr. Benedict located Indian round mounds on the Home grounds.  These were just north of the highway.  One was thirty or more feet in diameter and a few feet high.  Every trace of it has disappeared. Faint indications of three other mounds were in the same field.  These had also been round in form.  The Menomini speak of the rainbow (we-iwi-ke-koq-se-miq-egan) as the “old woman’s path.”  Its bright and beautiful colors Indian women may employ in their quillwork and beadwork, but the symbol itself “is a too sacred one for ordinary use.”  The old woman is Mother Earth, Koko-ma-shinna.  The gold and red leaves which fall from the trees in the autumn are her blanket.

 

Maple or Government Island

 

            This large island lies partly in Taylor and partly in Rainbow Lake, at the union of these two attractive bodies of water.  It also once bore the name of Hearn Island, this name being that of a former owner.  The Menomini called it Sho-poma, sugar.  It is at the present time a wild life preserve belonging to the Wisconsin Veteran’s Home.  It is a somewhat fishhook shaped island, its length being over a quarter of a mile and its greatest width (map scale) some 500 feet.  The area of Maple Island is 13.2 acres.

            The eastern end of this island is low rising only a foot or more at its extremity above the water of Taylor Lake.  The bay which separates this end from the mainland on the Home grounds is not more than 500 feet across.  The western end of the island is high and is clothed with a fine forest of maple, tall pine, paper birch and other trees.  On the eastern end of the island there is a cottage surrounded by an open grove of tall pine and other trees.  About 200 feet northwest of this building the land is low and swampy.  About 150 feet beyond this, on the north side of the woodland path, there is a large, weathered red granite boulder, its base seemingly deeply imbedded in the soil.  At this point the land rises gradually forming a low ridge or backbone with a marsh area on its southern side.  Beyond the ridge rises to higher ground where is a grove of maple trees.  On this high ground, on the crest of the island, there is another large boulder.  Other huge stones are at the north end of the island and on the edge of a deep ravine on its south slopes.

            At several places on the backbone of the island and on its top are clusters of three or more circular pits now filled with leaf mold and forest debris.  Some of these were excavated but this digging gave no information of their nature.  It is probable that they are Indian storage pits.  At one place at the base of the ridge, on its southern side, near the base of a boulder a cluster of burned stones from a former fireplace were unearthed.

            Maple sugar has been made by white men on this island in recent years.  Their furnace for boiling the sap and numbers of tin cans for gathering it are there.  Menomini information indicates that some of their people, when located in this region, also collected sap and made maple sugar on this island.  Old scars on the trunks of some trees may be theirs. These people formerly made sugar in the latter part of February and in March.  The Indian families then repaired to the “sugar bushes.”  Here the men were soon engaged in preparing sap spiles and in cutting firewood, and the women in washing and repairing the birchbark pans.  One man could tap many trees in a day.  A cut was made in the tree trunk with an axe into which a chip of wood was wedged, the dripping sap being caught in a bark pan placed on the ground beneath.  The sap was collected in bark buckets and poured into kettles to be boiled.  When the syrup began to granulate it was poured into bark makaks.  Over these receptacles a cover was sewed until the sugar was required for use.  Sugar was also made into small cakes (bakwa-tene-kau) for children.  The Menomini also formerly made maple sugar in other localities in the Chain o’ Lakes region.

            The view of Maple Island from Rainbow Lake is most impressive.  The high, sloping, timbered shore presenting a solid wall of green, with some giant pines towering high above.  The vegetation of the island is very interesting.  The wild grape, huckleberry, bearberry, snowberry, sumac, and many other plants which grow on its shores, slopes and crest, were all very useful to the former native inhabitants of the locality.

 

Sunrise Lake

 

            Sunrise Lake is the name now given to the northern part of Rainbow Lake and to which Mr. Benedict on his map in 1896 gave the name Hicks Lake.

            Occupying a high, wooded peninsula-shaped tract of land at the southeastern angle of this lake and also washed by the clear waters of Rainbow, Taylor and Otter lakes is Loyola Villa, a summer home of priests of the Jesuit order.  The Indians formerly camped here, as they did on the adjoining shores of Otter Lake, but no surface evidence of this was found on these beautiful grounds whose buildings are in a grove of tall white and Norway pine trees.

            At the northeastern angle of Sunrise Lake was formerly located Dr. G.D. Calkin’s resort, Shealtiel Spring.  This quite famous spring covered by a pavilion, is on the lake shore at he base of a 6 foot bank. In its rear is a forest of oak trees.  Beyond it, on the north shore of the lake, in Lake View Park, are the J.E. Campbell and other summer homes.  All along this once well wooded shore the Indians at different times camped in small or considerable numbers.  The spring were no doubt an attraction.  Two trails from the west united near this place.

            In the fields, now cultivated, of the Dr. Layton farm, in the rear of the Lake View cottages, Mr. Benedict found a group of three mounds.  These are still faintly indicated in the field in the rear of the Colby cottage.  They are about 150 feet north of the lake shore. These mounds were of small dimensions. One was evidently oval and the other two circular in form.  They were arranged in an east and west line being about 30 to 36 feet apart.  These mounds might readily be and should be restored.

            At the northwest corner of Sunrise Lake, at Calkins Landing, there was another good spring. It is walled in with a wooden spring house.  A giant Norway pine stands on the lake shore about 20 feet north

 

 

INDIAN TURTLE EFFIGY MOUND

 

of it.  It leans over the water and is a conspicuous landmark.  Several hundred feet south of the spring there is another large pine.  This Highland Park (west shore of the lake), land now occupied by summer homes, the Indians also camped upon.  Quite a few flint and other implements have been found in farm fields in the rear of the cottages.

            At the southwestern angle of the lake, opposite the Crow’s Nest property of Mr. G. Griffith Williams, there is a small bay (Osus, muskrat).  A creek or drain flowing from a small pond lying a short distance to the west enters Muskrat Bay.  On the Dalzell place (Tarry Inn) on the north side of this bay an Indian site is indicated in a small garden spot on the hillside slope.  Here were found hearthstones, quartz and gray flint chips and flakes, a notched arrowpoint, the point of a broken perforator and a small hammerstone.  This site very probably extends to the land on the opposite side of the creek and bay, where there was once a good spring.

            The Menomini name for sunrise or dawn is Wa-pan (Wau-bun).  Ma-nabus, the culture hero, is derived from the Great Spirit (Sun), who created his Grandmother Earth.  With Ma-nabus came the Indian Dawn.

 

Onaway Island

 

            This interesting island in Sunrise Lake is named Juniper Island on both the Benedict and the State hydrographic maps.  Its southern end is broadly rounded and its northern extremity produced in a long sharp point.  Its lake banks are high and its top level.  Canoe birch and other trees grow on its banks.  At its northern end there is a grove of white pine and birch trees.  This island is in use as a Boy Scout camp ground, the buildings extending along its eastern margin.  It is an ideal location for a boy’s summer camp.

            This island the early Indians also occupied as a camp ground.  We had no difficulty in finding ample evidence of this.  In bare spots on the parade and recreation ground white quartz chips and fragments, flint chips and spalls of white, gray and pink colors, a single potsherd, a crude flint pecking hammer and a number of burned angular stones from an aboriginal fireplace were found on and beneath the soil surface.  No doubt others are hidden beneath the sod.  Flint chips also occurred in several places on the lake banks, where they have washed out of the soil.  Several flint arrowpoints have been found on this island.

            The Menomini ceased camping on Onaway Island because a number of their people became sick and they had some other misfortunes.  This may have been due to the presence of Evil Ones.  They have the power to transform themselves into balls of fire or animals. The early Indians were very superstitious.

            Crescent or Club Island lies in Rainbow Lake between Onaway and Maple Islands.  Although of small size this crescent shaped island is not unattractive.  It is about 80 feet wide at its widest part, the low ridge forming its backbone being about 100 feet in length.  A cottage is located at its eastern end. No evidence of former Indian occupation was found on this islet.  The area of Onaway Island is about 5 acres, and of Crescent Island a third of an acre.

 

McCrossen Lake

 

            This hammock shaped lake lies between the two larger lakes, Rainbow and Round.  The state record gives its area as 34 acres and its greatest depth as 70 feet.

            On the north shore of this lake is the beautiful summer home (Strongwood Cabin) of H. Cushman; also the forest preserve (Greenwood Forest) of Congressman and Mrs. Edward E. Browne.  This is recognized as one of the native beauty spots of the Chain o’ Lakes.  The lake shores are high with tall pine trees standing at intervals along the lake bank. Greenwood Forest is a fine stand of mixed woods in which the native plants, shrubs and trees are being carefully protected by their owner.

            Through this forest, from oak Park at the northeast angle of McCrossen Lake, there ran a lake shore trail which in front of the Browne cottage (which faces on Round Lake) followed rather closely along the Round Lake shore in its now northward course.  Here a remnant of this old Indian path may still be seen.  On the high point above it, about the Browne cottage is a fine stand of Norway pines.

            Scattered through the length of Greenwood Forest are a number of circular depressions, very likely former provision caches.  One was excavated and found to be empty, as might be expected.  Years ago an Indian hunting party engaged in hunting deer camped for a time on this shore of the lake.  On the northern edge of the forest there is a swampy depression with young fir trees and some cranberry vines, a fine refuge for wild birds and small animals.

            At the western end of McCrossen Lake (the entrance into its waters from Round Lake) there is a rather narrow channel formed by the near meeting of two points of land, one projecting from the Greenwood shore and the other from the Fern Terrace shore on the south bank of the lake.  These are West Point and Fern Terrace Point.  There is a similar narrows channel also at the eastern end of McCrossen Lake. The two points which here approach each other are Center or Cousins Point on the north shore and Shady Cove Point on the south shore.

            In passing through these channels in dugout or bark canoes in former times it was the custom of the natives to strew tobacco on the water to appease the Underneath Ones, of whom they had a superstitious dread.  McCrossen Lake was thought to be a lurking place of the great fish monster, Ma-shenomak, who was believed to have destroyed the “first people.”  Because of these narrows at it’s either end this lake has the descriptive name of So-pe-che-mad-con-to-a-pay-sa-wick, or “channels at each end of the lake.”

            The south shore of McCrossen Lake is occupied by many cottage summer homes.  Here is also (on the southwest shore) The Pines Inn, a summer resort hotel.  By the side of a dirt road near The Inn and cottages of McCrossen Park, at the southwestern angle of the lake, is a low and not conspicuous mound.  This mound is only about 12 feet in diameter and not over a foot high. It has growing upon it a quite large Norway pine.  In the cultivated field near this mound scattered flint chips and spalls, quartz chips and hearthstones tell of the presence of an Indian camp site.

 

Round Lake

 

            Remains of former Indian camp and village sites occur in a number of places on the shores of this third largest of the fair lakes of the Waupaca Chain.

            The first of these sites is located on the northeast shore. In this locality traces of a former camp site were found in a cultivated field a short distance east of the well-known summer resort hotel, Locksley Hall.  Scattered fireplace stones, and flint rejectage mark this site.  The land being under crops it could not be carefully examined.  Mr. Benedict possessed a stone celt or hatchet, a flint knife and several flint arrowpoints and scrapers from this locality.  Arrowpoints have also been found here and at other places on the east shore of Round Lake by other collectors of Indian implements.  Beyond this camp site there is a small tamarack swamp.  The lake shore trail from Greenwood at the southeast angle of the lake ran to this locality.

            The Menomini Indians are reported to have formerly camped on the north shore of Round Lake between the locations known as Smiths Landing and Phenes landing. There was a good spring here and the hunting in this region was very good.  Less than a quarter mile to the north of the lake shore in the long ridge known as Sunset Hill.  North of this hill, according to an early map, ran one of the east and west Indian trails.

            On the west shore of the lake at Pleasant Park there are scattered remains of another Indian camp site. Here the lake banks are high, the slopes being clothed with tall trees and saplings.  At this place, on land recently under cultivation as a garden or gardens, but weed-grown at the time of our survey, scattered stones from an Indian fireplace or from several former hearths, were quite numerous.  In a cottage garden situated on a point several hundred feet north of this place additional hearthstones and fragments of a small earthenware vessel were found.  This vessel was constructed of a reddish clay its surface being unornamented.  A stone ball about 2-1/2 inches in diameter was also recovered.  Flint and quartz chips scattered through this garden indicated that an Indian arrowmaker had once plied his craft here.  North of this place the land is lower.  This region is named on some maps as Miniwasica Park.

            Another camp site is indicated on the lands of the M.E. Barton (former J.F. Dake) farm.  The now cultivated fields are quite level.  They were in poor condition for examination and only a few hearthstones and flint chips were seen.  On this site Dr. E.J.W. Notz of Milwaukee found some years ago a heap of sherds of broken pottery vessels. These were thought to indicate the location here of a kiln of some early Indian potter.  Evidence of aboriginal flint working was then abundant.  Russell Polly reports the finding of flint arrowpoints here.  This was once a good collecting ground.  There is a spring near the northern end of this site. At the southern edge of this site there are huge depressions once occupied by a tamarack swamp.  The western of these kettle holes had a connection with Ottman (Pollys) lake lying across the highway to the west.

            A plot of Indian garden beds is located in a woodland on the west shore of Round Lake.  These are situated east of where the highway turns westward past the southern shore of Lake Ottman.  A large boulder standing by the roadside marks the location of these very interesting remains of aboriginal man. These beds, fifteen in number, extend over an area about 90 feet wide and 150 feet long.  The beds are from 3 to 4 feet wide and the paths separating them from 1-1/2 to 2 feet in width.  Their general direction is north and south. The highest beds are less than a foot in height.  This is no recent Indian garden, large trees and stumps are on and among the beds.  The present Menomini have no information about them although it is very likely that they were erected and cultivated by their ancestors. Since these are the only remains of consequence of this character remaining in the Chain o’ Lakes region its summer inhabitants should set on foot a movement to secure their permanent preservation.  They contribute very much to the interest of the lakes country and are certain to be visited by increasingly large numbers of resorters and their friends.

            Beyond the northern end of this old aboriginal planting ground there is a deep depression with a stand of tamarack, birch and other trees, brush and some cranberry vines.  To the south a road cuts through the woodland.  South of this are cottages on the shore of Limekiln Lake, a southwestern lobe of Round Lake.

            On the south shore of Round Lake, at the entrance to McCrossen Lake, there is a very attractive point known as Fern Terrace (former J.P. Mallette place).  The lake banks are thirty or more feet high and are fringed with pine and birch trees.  This point was at some time also an Indian camp site, traces of which, flint and quartzite chips and a few hearthstones, were noted here in bare places about the buildings.  In former years such evidence was more abundant.  Some flint implements were found here.  We were shown a pebble hammerstone picked up on the point.

            A rather deep ravine is on the west side of Fern Terrace.  Beyond this, occupying the south shore of Limekiln Lake, is Oakwood, a fine oak forest now platted and being occupied by summer cottages.

            The water area of Round Lake is given as 108 acres, its greatest depth as about 67 feet.

            Mr. Benedict obtained the Menomini name Wa-tane-ken, “it is round,” for this lake, probably from Ni-aqtawa-pomi, the Waupaca chief elsewhere referred to. A legend connects it with the beaver and the bear women, who, in the mystic past, once quarreled over the possession of an Indian husband.

 

Columbian Lake

 

            Columbian Lake is the fifth largest lake of the Chain with a water area of 86 acres.  Its greatest depth is about 67 feet.  Four attractive large points indent its rather irregular outline.  To some of the Menomini it appears to have been known as Me-he-con-as-kay, the name referring to the trail at the Indian Crossing, or only as Me-he-con (trail).

            There was an Indian camp site on the north shore of this lake of which some traces consisting of hearthstones, quartz chips and fragments and clam shell fragments were found in places favorable for examination.  Most of the fields where such evidence might be found were overgrown with tall grass and weeds.  Dr. E.J.W. Notz of Milwaukee, who visited this locality in 1920, found evidence of Indian occupation in nearly every field and unoccupied spot.  Mr. W.E. Carpenter stated, in August 1903, that a cache or hoard of six flint blanks of good size had recently been found on the north shore of Columbian Lake in digging the foundation for a cottage.  These were in a heap when recovered.

            Mr. Benedict located a single round mound on the north shore, just west of the northeastern shore of the lake.  No trace of it could be found.  The old Indian trail from the Waupaca River passed the north shore of Columbian Lake on its way to the Indian Crossing.  The lake shore of the lake bears the name of Columbian Park and is well occupied by cottages.  The top of the lake bank is in places from 25 to 30 feet above the water.

            A concrete bridge now spans the water connection between Limekiln Lake (the southwestern lobe of Round Lake) and Columbian Lake, where was once the Indian trail crossing or ford of this stream.

            When this ford was still in use in the early days of white settlement the redmen waded through the shallow water or crossed by means of a log “bridge” reported to have been here.  John V. Satterlee states that it was a former custom of his people, the Menomini, before crossing at a ford like this to make a tobacco offering to the spirits of the water.  A feast might also be given to the monster Underworld Bears to appease them.  Then anyone could pass through the water without fear of harm or disaster.

            At the Indian Crossing groups of Indians passing north or south over the trail occasionally camped.  One of these sites is on the bank of Limekiln Lake north of the Crossing, where flint and quartzite flakes and several arrowpoints have been found in recent excavating of the sandy lake bank, and elsewhere.  This site also extended over on to the Casino grounds on the opposite (Columbian Lake) side of the road, where more flint refuse and burned stones were disturbed.  They camped also on the bank s of both lakes on the southern side of the Crossing.  On the west side of the highway, on elevated land of the Indian Crossing Resort, overlooking the creek several pits were found.  One of these was 4 feet in diameter and of about the same depth.  This probable Indian storage pit was filled with leaf mold.  Quartz chips were found nearby and a pebble pecking hammer imbedded in the roadside bank.

            At the forks of the highway leading form the Crossing a cluster of five or more similar circular pits were found.  Several of these were excavated.  They were empty.  No traces of a bark or other lining were found.  A small flint arrowpoint was found at the edge of the highway where it had probably washed or worked out of the sandy surface.  This location is in the subdivision known as Oakwood.

            We were unable to find any traces of early aboriginal occupation at Perch Point or Forest Park on the eastern shore, or on the Camp Cleghorn property on the south shore of Columbian lake.  On both of these shores Indians are reported to have ones camped.

            On the west shore of Columbian lake a group of threshing or storage pits were found near the end of the long point opposite the entrance into Long Lake.

 

Ottman Lake

 

            This small pestle-shaped lake located north of Columbian Lake, named on the state maps for a former owner of the land about it, is now often called Pollys Lake, after its present occupant.  Although of small size this spring-fed lake, by the side of the Wolf River-Lake Poygan trail, was a favorite camp ground of the early and later Indians.  Muskrats were quite abundant there and these were both hunted and trapped.  Its native name, O-sans-kah-con-nay, refers to this former abundance of rats.  Hard hunted though they once were some of these industrious small animals still linger about its shores.

            This lake appears to have been completely surrounded by Indian camp sites.  More Indian stone and other implements have been collected from these cultivated fields in the course of years than from most other lakes of the Waupaca Chain.  Once surrounded by woodlands the lands about Lake Ottman are now in cultivation or in use for pasturage. A spring contributes its clear waters to the lake at its northern end.

            On the north and east shores of this lake evidences of former aboriginal life have been the most plentiful.  During the past thirty or more years hundreds of flint and heavier stone implements and a number of copper pieces have been collected from the gravelly and other fields on this shore which sowed every other indication of having been a busy and long-occupied village site.  On the east shore this land is a series of knolls their tops elevated high above the lake with rather steep slopes to the water’s edge.  The soil is sandy and gravelly.  The occupants of this site had ample material at hand for the fashioning of hammers, hatchets, knives and arrowpoints.  The stones from their wigwam fireplaces and other fires are scattered over the surface in numbers of places.  We found flint and quartzite chips and in one spot the sherds of several broken earthernware vessels.

            Mr. Ottman, the former owner of the land, once found here an entire small pottery vessel.  Before Mr. Benedict and the writer could get it it had been demolished by two boys by shooting at it with a small rifle.

            Scattered hearthstones and flint refuse are also found on the south shore of Lake Ottman where many flint points have also been collected.  A piece of float copper was obtained from a small gravel pit located here.

            Mr. Benedict located a group of three round mounds here.  One was not far from the shore of the lake and two others a short distance south of it, south of the location of the old Indian trail. About ten years ago Mr. Polly plowed up one of these mounds.  Pieces of a broken pottery vessel and a stone celt were found with the bones of the burial or burials which the mound contained.  Mr. Will Ottman excavated one in 1901, finding potsherds and flint points.  Dr. E.J.W. Notz of Milwaukee found one of the other mounds still in existence in 1920.  It has been under cultivation for a number of years and was at this time 3 feet high and 31x32 feet in diameter.  At this time he also located in this vicinity a group of 16 to 18 shallow pits, probably wild rice threshing pits.

            Another camp site is indicated in a cultivated field on the west shore of this lake.  Hearthstones were very numerous at its northern edge. Quantities of white quartz and grayish white flint chips were strewed about.  Mr. Benedict stated in 1903 that when these fields were first plowed heaps of flint chips were disturbed here, the locations of former flint workshops.  On our first visit to this camp site we picked up a fine small hammerstone (a mere toy implement), a flint awl or perforator and several broken flint arrowpoints.  Also a lump of burned clay.

            Other fields on the west shore of the lake, north of this site, were in use as pastures.  Hearthstones were found imbedded in the sod in several places.

            If either Mr. Benedict or Mr. W.W. Radley of Rural, both of whom were experienced collectors and possessed many specimens from the sites on the shores of Lake Ottman, were living, the complete story of its Indian occupation and native industries might be told.  Dr. Notz in 1920 reported the unearthing by a plow on the south shore of the lake of a cache or deposit of 13 flint knives, three of which he obtained.  He also obtained a steatite monitor pipe with a flat base, a mica schist one-hole gorget, a grooved stone axe, arrowponts and pottery fragments.  Russell Polly has a cache of 15 small leaf-shaped flint blanks found on the camp site on the west shore of the lake.  These are from 1-3/4 to 2-1/4 inches in length.  Of interest in his small collection were a broken red sandstone gorget and a fragmentary slate gorget.  His collection illustrates the variety of material, flint, hornstone, quartz, quartzite and rhyolite, which was in use in the manufacture of arrow and spear points, scrapers, knives and perforators on these Lake Ottman camp sites.  The flint was of white, clouded white, gray, pink, black and blue colors.

            Dr. Notz reported a trail which lead from the north shore of Ottman Lake to a point about one-half mile north of Round Lake.  A section of this trail could still be seen in 1920.

 

Long Lake

 

            This is the second largest of the lakes of the Chain o’ Lakes and is located at the western end of the “Big Chain.”  Its length (north and south) is seven-eighths of a mile, and its greatest width, at its northern end, three-eighths of a mile.  Its water area is recorded as 110 acres and its greatest depth as nearly 78 feet.  Long Lake is a fine body of water.  Its eastern shores are occupied by a large number of cottages, the locality named on maps as Ben Hewdo, occupying a large bend at about the middle of this shore.  On its western shore is a large forest. There is also a quite extensive tamarack swamp.  Emmons Creek empties into the lake at about the middle of this shore.  Arbor Creek (Crystal River) flows form the lake on its southeast shore.

            A grooved stone axe and several flint arrowpoints have been found by summer residents of the north shore of this lake.  Probably the camp site found on the northeast shore of Beasley Lake extended on to this shore of Long Lake.  Scattered flint implements have also been found in the improving of some of the cottage properties on the northeast shore of the lake and also at Ben Hewdo.

            The principal Indian site on the shore of Long Lake appears to have been north and south of the Arbor Creek outlet.  This locality Mr. Benedict named as Camp Harrison.  In the cultivated lands north of the creek many flint points, and some hammerstones, pecking hammers, stone scrapers, celts and other Indian implements have been found.  This site was in pioneer days a known Menomini camp ground.

            A former camp site is indicated in a garden north of the highway at the southern end of the lake.  In this sandy field were scattered hearthstones, numerous flint chips of a former workshop site, and animal bones and small pieces of unio shell.  This site extends into a farm field adjoining the garden on the east.

            The former location of another camp site was on the northwest shore of Long Lake.  Here in some fields formerly under cultivation, largely overgrown with weeds during our investigations, flint and quartzite chips, a fractured flint nodule, a triangular arrowpoint and hearthstones were found.  Had this field been in better shape for examination a larger amount of evidence of its former Indian occupation might have been obtained.

            About the Minnow Spring, near the head of a small bay on the west shore of this lake, was a former favorite camp ground of parties of Menomini Indians.

            A Menomini name for Long Lake was Sewa-non-nipe-se (wild grape lake) and was probably given to it because of the vines once occurring in its woodlands.

 

Emmons Lake

 

            This is a small lake less than a quarter of a mile in length and of a dumbbell shape, being constricted near its middle.  A brook flowing from its southern extremity empties into Emmons Creek with flows in a northeasterly direction and discharges its waters into Long Lake at about the middle of its western shore.  Mr. W.D. Emmons, the pioneer settler after whom this lake was named, built his home here in 1852.  At that time there were Indian rush and bark covered wigwams on the shores of the lake and also along the banks of Emmons Creek.  Parties or family groups of Menomini camped here at different times from the year 1852 until 1865 or later.  They were not unfriendly and the settlers received no harm from them. During the state-wide Indian scare of 1862 Mr. and Mrs. Emmons hid in a corn field near their home.

            The region about the lake was quite heavily forested and a good hunting ground.  Small herds of deer were common and bears were occasionally seen.  Smaller animals were numerous here.  There was a passenger pigeon roost on what was later the Richardson farm, about a mile south of the Emmons home-stead. Muskrats were very common about the lake and in the creek bottoms.  Fish were abundant in the lake, this being no doubt a spawning ground.  Mr. John H. Olson, who resides on the east shore of the upper half of the lake, states that he has seen fish so abundant in its waters that they crowded each other and some were almost out of the water.  In early days the Indians speared the fish, both cooking and smoking them over a fire.  Following the Menomini method of smoking was probably done on a grille made of sticks and supported on crotched sticks over a fireplace or fire.

            An Indian name sometimes given Emmons Lake was Ko-wah-chee-swon, being the name for the shinny game, a sacred game played by Indian women.  It was played twice a year in veneration of the four “East Sky Sisters” and was accompanied by ceremonies and feasts.  In playing it stick wands and a buckskin double ball are used.  It has been suggested that the shape of the lake bears a resemblance tone of these double balls.  The two parts of Emmons Lake are today sometimes referred to as Millers and Olsons lakes.

            Our archeological investigations locate an Indian site on both shores of this lake. On the west shore hearthstones and quartz chips, spalls and fragments of broken quartz pebbles are scattered over small areas in a level sandy field on the west side of the road.  This field is the property of Mr. John H. Olson, who resides on the lake bank.  The site also extends into a narrow pasture field on the east side of the road south of the Olson barn.  The owner states that in past years numerous flint implements and some stone celts and grooved axes have been found on this site.  Mr. W.W. Radley of Rural collected some of these.  Mr. Benedict also possessed stone implements and ornaments from this site.  We found a small quartzite flake scraper, and broken flint points.

            In the field west of the road Mr. Benedict found a group of four round mounds, which appear on his map.  One of these remains by the side of the east and west road, opposite the southwest corner of this field.  This mound is 28 feet in diameter and about 2 feet high.  It is so low as scarcely to be noticed by anyone driving down this road.

            On the east shore of Emmons Lake there are scattered indications of former wigwam sites in the fields, the entire shoreline on this side of the lake being under cultivation.  Here are fire-cracked stones and near them flint and quartzite chips and spalls.  A stemmed flint arrowpoint and a broken perforator were found.  A rivulet enters the lake from a swamp at about its middle on this shore. This swamp borders the eastern edge of this site.

            At the northern end of the lake, in a sandy field, several former wigwam sites are indicated by the presence of clusters of burned stones.  One of these hearths was quite intact boulders being employed to line a shallow basin-shaped depression about 2 feet in diameter.  Two of these former wigwam sites were on a gentle slope, within about 60 feet of each other.  They were within about 75 feet of the lake bank.  Near the western side of those two sites Mr. John J. Knudsen found a discoidal hammerstone, about 5 inches in diameter and weighing about a pound, and a triangular quartzite blade.  A third wigwam site was found about 150 feet beyond the last.  Near all of these sites were found flint chips and fragments of several colors.  On this bank of the lake there is a stony spring which Mr. Benedict has also mapped.  A screen of aspen trees stands on this shore of the lake.

 

Emmons Creek

 

            Indications of early Indian occupation are found in the fields about the former Emmons home, on the banks of Emmons Creek, a short distance southeast of the foot of Emmons Lake.  In the rear of the house Mr. Benedict locates a spring which was no doubt responsible for the camp sites near it.  In a garden spot near it flint and quartz rejectage was fairly abundant.  Here an arrow-maker once worked.  Mr. Vint. Emmons states that in 1898 an Indian earthenware vessel of medium size was plowed up in the field on the south bank of the creek not far from the house.  On this bank of the creek there are also indications of former Indian habitations in the level cultivated fields.  Broken deer and other animal bones were among these.  A copper awl was also found here.

            Mr. Benedict located two round mounds on the highway east of Emmons Creek.  One of these was on the south side of the highway, a short distance east of the Emmons house.  The other was on the north side, a short distance beyond the other.  The first of these Mr. Emmons’ father excavated.  It contained a cremated burial or burials, the burned human bones being mixed with a quantity of charcoal and ashes.

            Messrs. Benedict and Radley both had implements found on these Emmons Creek sites. Mr. Vint. Emmons also has specimens collected here.

            The banks of Emmons Creek were a favorite camp ground of small family or other groups of Menomini in settlement days and later.  Emmons Creek is a clear stream with brush and tree-lined banks.  There is much swampy land with alder brush.  In favorable places along the creek they erected their rush and bark coved wigwams.  Sometimes these habitations were of a more temporary nature, being merely a shelter of poles leaned together in a conical form and tied at their tops.  These are covered with blankets, canvas or brush.  Such wigwams and shelters might be scattered over the entire distance of nearly a half mile from near Emmons Lake to Long Lake.  Particularly favored for camping was a tract of land located between the creek and the west shore of Long Lake.  This is designated on the Benedict map as the “Emmons Peninsula,” and on some more recent maps as She-she-pe-comeo Park.  In this vicinity are several fine springs.  To the north of the mouth of the creek are a fine oak forest and a tamarack swamp.  A trail followed up the creek banks to the lake.

 

 

Miner Lake

 

            This is a lake of quite irregular shore lines, there being four quite large bays on its northern, southern and eastern shores.  It has an area of 39 acres, the greatest depth of its water being about 47 feet.  On its east shore are a row of cottages with level sandy and gravelly cultivated fields beyond these.  A former camp site is indicated in these fields of the Bradley farm by the presence of scattered burned and cracked stones from one or several Indian fireplace.  No flint chips were found near these and the camp may have been a fairly recent one.  There are faint indications of what may have been a small area of Indian garden beds in the grass plot in the rear of one of the cottages. We were unable to learn of the finding of any Indian implements along this shore of the lake.  South of the cultivated fields there is a woodland.

            There was also an Indian camp site on the north shore of Miner Lake.  The first indications of such occupation were found at the base of White Eagle Point, a long narrow point extending into the lake. Here in the sandy road we recovered a pebble hammerstone, several hearthstones and white quartz chips and flakes.  Doubtless other Indian refuse would be found here if the sod were removed.  This pretty point has a fine grove of Norway pines.  The top of the lake bank is in places from 5 to 6 feet above the water.

            Beyond his point, from La Belle cottage to Four Pines cottage, evidences of former Indian occupation were found almost everywhere on both sides of the road, wherever there were gardens or bare spots in the turf where it had been removed.  Fireplace stones and chips of quartz and chips and spalls of white and gray flint were found in these places.  Here the arrowsmith had once been quite busy.  Flint nodules from which a few flakes or pieces had been struck, probably with a pebble hammer were also found here.  Much of the vacant land here and beyond this place is covered with tall grass and brush making a search for further evidence of Indian occupation impossible at this time.  There is a fringe of tall pine and oak trees along the lake bank. This locality was in early days of white settlement quite heavily forested.

 

Dake Lake

 

            On the shores of Dake Lake, the twin of Miner Lake, indications of a former camp site were found on the property of Mrs. E.R. Jennings on the east shore.  These remains of former Indian residence were most abundant at the eastern edge of a level pasture field, once cultivated.  This place was opposite the entrance from Miner Lake into this lake. Here, although this pasture was not in a condition particularly favorable for investigation, were found numerous hearthstones in several spots, a few fragments of decomposed clam shell valves, a few flint and a considerable number of quartzite chips and fragments.  Digging near one of the clusters of hearthstones revealed a shallow basin-shaped depression, a fireplace, filled with ashes, burned earth and charcoal.  It was about 2 feet in diameter and not over 8 inches deep.  The burned stones had been used to lien this hearth.  Implements found in this field were a small stone ball, a small sand-stone grooved arrowshaft grinder and three flint arrowpoints.

            The disposal of the hearthstones, one cluster near the Miner Lake entrance and the other about 100 feet east of it, appear to indicate the former location of at least two wigwams on this site. How many more such sites may be hidden beneath the sod of the adjoining Miner Lake woodland we do not know. Some flint implements have been picked up in this field by collectors.

            The lake banks along the edge of this campsite are from 6 to 10 feet high and are fringed with oak, pine and other young trees.  About 75 feet of water separates the east and west shores of Dake Lake at its connection with Miner Lake.

            On the east this camp site is bordered by a small tamarack swamp.  This formerly extended southward toward the Jennings residence, its location being still marked by a depression.  East of the Jennings house, and extending toward the lake shore, there is an area of low land at present occupied by a grove of oak trees.  A few tall pine trees stand on the lake bank.  Thus the camp site was located on land at one time more or less of an island.  On the lake shore, near the Jennings house, there formerly was a good spring.

            The water area of Dake Lake is given as 37 acres and the greatest depth of its water as 28-1/2 feet.  It is one of the shallowest of the Big Chain lakes.

            A few Menomini Indians are reported to have at one time camped in the woodlands on the north and west shores of Dake Lake.  On the north shore, on the edge of a woodland road, a single stemmed flint arrowpoint was found.

            A small circular pond lies a short distance southwest of the southwest shore of Dake Lake. The fields on its north and east shores are sandy.  Scattered hearthstones in these fields and chips and fragments indicate a former camp site.

            The Indians recognized Miner and Dake lakes as twin lakes (Moh-tas-sa-wick).  Twins of any kind are considered lucky.  Long ago the First Twins were born, lived for a while and then died.  After many years they chose to return and were born again.

 

 

THE  LITTLE  CHAIN  LAKES

 

Beasley Lake

 

            There are nine lakelets in the so-called “Little Chain” at the western end of the Chain o’ Lakes the smallest of these wildwood lakes being Bass or Black Bass, and Youngs lakes.  When shown a map of these lakes John Tomau, the old Menomini Indian savant, remarked that they reminded him of an Indian woman’s string of beads which had become unfastened and the beads in danger of becoming scattered and lost.

            Beasley Lake, the first of these small lakes, is joined to Long Lake at its northwestern angle, being really only a lobe of that large lake.  A small wooded island, Wildwood Island, lies in the channel connecting the two lakes.  Beasley Lake, somewhat oval in shape, has an area of 13-1/2 acres, the greatest depth of its water being 51 feet.  Attached to its northwestern shore is Bass Lake, and connected with this lake by a small stream is Youngs Lake.

            The site of a former Indian camp ground is on the northeast shore of Beasley Lake.  Here there is a small sand pit, its edge being about 30 feet south of the highway.  This pit has been cut into the lake bank which here overlooks a narrow, grass-grown lake shore flat occupied at this time by a single cottage and a planting of young pine trees.  Along the upper edge of this former sand pit, beneath the grass roots, numbers of Indian hearthstones, white quartz chips and fragments, a small round pebble hammerstone and a number of sherds of a small pottery vessel were found. These potsherds were of a reddish brown clay and were tempered with crushed stone.  The digging of a few test pits appeared to indicate that this former campsite extended into the pasture field on the north side of the highway, and which is on the east side of Bass Lake.  North of this part of the camp site there is a deep depression once a tamarack swamp.

            Indications of a former Indian camp site also occur on the northwest shore of Beasley Lake, along the north bank of Beasley Brook, north of the highway.  The improvement of the road has caused the finding of a few flint arrowpoints here.

           

Bass Lake

 

            In the summer of 1903, when we first visited this locality with Mr. Benedict, we found on the west shore of this small round lake, at a distance of about 18 rods north of Beasley Brook, a small round or conical mound.  This earthwork was on top of the bank, about 40 feet above and 150 feet from the lake shore.  This mound we had no means of excavating at that time. Mr. Benedict may have done so later, as he then intended, but no record of the results are available.

            A camp site is indicated in a field in the rear of the former mound location.  Here we found the usual flint chips and fragments, fireplace stones, bone fragments, bits of clam shell, and potsherds.  The late Mr. W.W. Radley of Rural had in his collection from this site a stone celt, postherds, and flint arrowpoints and scrapers.  Other collectors have also picked up a few arrowpoints and other flint artifacts here in past years.  The presence of a camp or small village here in years past is pretty well established.

            On the Benedict map this lake is named Black Bass Lake.

 

Youngs Lake

 

            On the north and west shores of this smallest lake of the Chain there is another old Indian camp site.  In the very sandy cultivated fields the former sites of several wigwams are indicated by groups of angular burned hearthstones.  The latter were sufficiently numerous to have easily filled a bushel basket.  Fragments of charcoal were found near some of these.  Digging of test holes failed to reveal the exact locations of the former hearths.  The finding of white quartz chips and fragments, evidently a favorite material of the arrowmakers, and of a single cord-marked potsherd furnished additional evidence of the former Indian occupation of this locality.  The fields were occupied by a potato crop making the search for further evidence difficult.  A few flint arrowpoints have been found in the fields on the north shore of Youngs Lake.  James Christenson is reported to have found others on the fields of the west shore.

            There is a spring on the northeast shore and a swamp on the east shore of the lake.  Several native copper implements have been found near the spring.  Dr. E.J.W. Notz reports the finding of a copper spearpoint here.

            A few Menomini Indians are known to have camped on the west shore of this lake since the first settlers came to the Waupaca lakes.  They were engaged in hunting and fishing.

            The area of Youngs Lake is given as 3 acres and its greatest depth as about 11-1/2 feet.

 

Lake Orlando

 

            This small lake lies a short distance west of Beasley Lake with which it is connected by a clear spring brook, Beasley Brook, well known to all canoeists who frequent the Chain o’ Lakes region. Its area is about 4 acres.  Where this crystal stream leaves Lake Orlando there is on the north side of the highway a fine spring at present enclosed by an earthen pipe, and to which all picnic parties resort for a cooling drink.

            In the level field above this spring there is an Indian camp site.  Some years ago a local summer resorter and his son collected from this site “nearly a half peck” of flint arrow and spearpoints and other flint artifacts.  Only a small part of this field was under cultivation during the summer of 1930 yet a sufficient number of flint and quartz chips, fractured flint nodules, hearthstones, and pieces of bone and shell were in evidence to establish its character.

            The eastern shore of Lake Orlando is wooded, there is a tamarack swamp at its northern end.  In the elevated cultivated fields over-looking this beautiful small lake and the swamp hearthstones mark an area where a wigwam once stood.  No evidence of stone working was found and it is probable that this Indian encampment was a recent and temporary one, perhaps a hunting camp.

 

Knight Lake

 

            This lake is joined to the western side of the smaller Lake Orlando by a narrow arm or lobe.  On the Hydrographic Map of the Chain o’ Lakes the two lakes appear as one lake under the name of Knight Lake.  Knight Lake is an irregularly shaped body of water, its area being about 17 acres and its maximum depth about 42-1/2 feet.  Like its twin, it is a very attractive small lake, its shores as yet unoccupied by summer homes.  On its north shore are cultivated fields, pastures and a tamarack swamp.   An Indian camp site is located on a rounded point on this shore.  Most of this sandy, elevated point was under sod and in use as a pasture during the past summer.  In one small area at its western margin, scattered by the tramping of a small herd of cows, were the angular burned stones of a former wigwam fireplace.  Other hearthstones lie on the sod or are imbedded in it in different places in this pasture.  A small remnant of a former trail once leading to the end of the point is present.  In pioneer days a few Menomini occasionally camped on this point.  Several years ago an iron fish spear was found in the cultivated fields north of the point, on this shore of Knight Lake.

            On the north shore of this lake there is a spring connected by a drain with a tamarack swamp at the western edge of the point.  Mr. Benedict had a few flint arrowpoints which were found near this spring.  The Menomini once had a small planting ground in this vicinity, growing some corn.  On his map he shows a trail coming from the north through the Joel Knight farm and which reached the western side of Knight Lake. He found tow round mounds in fields on the north shore of this lake.  No trace of these was found.  Cultivation of the land has probably destroyed them.

 

Manomin Lake

 

            A small stream connects this lakelet with the wooded south shore of Knight Lake.  Mr. Benedict named this lake Manomin because of the wild rice which formerly grew in its bed, and the grain of which the Indians are reported to have once harvested.  On the Hydrographic Map it is given the unattractive name of Mud Lake.  Its area is there noted as 4-1/2 acres and its greatest depth as 32 feet.

            In former days, when the Indians gathered for the annual wild rice harvest, special warrior police were appointed to guard the beds to prevent premature picking.  They believed that manomin was given to the people by the Bear Monsters.  The waterfowl assisted the Indians in sowing it in the lakes and streams.

 

Pope Lake

 

            Pope Lake, lying a short distance west of Manomin Lake, is connected with it by a stream or channel.  This lake is somewhat rectangular in shape and has a water area of 14 acres and a maximum depth of 42-1/2 feet.  Hartman Creek, a small stream formed by a union of Badger Brook and Big Spring Brook, flows into Pope Lake at its northwestern angle.  In a tract of land lying between Knight, Manomin and Pope lakes and their connecting streams there is an area of elevated land to which the name of Mt. Joe is given on the Benedict map.  It is an attractive feature of the landscape.

            A camp site is located on the land of the Peterson farm on the north side of Hartman creek, on the north shore of Pope Lake.  Remains of this former camp ground, consisting of hearthstones and quartz and flint and quartz refuse of the Indian arrowmaker are found on a sandy point overlooking the lake marsh.  The cultivated fields on this farm are rolling land and indications of former wigwam sites occur on nearly every one of a series of sandy and gravelly knolls.  On one of these sherds of a reddish-brown a cord-marked pottery vessel was found.

            Indications of a former camp site also occur in a sandy cultivated field on the south side of Hartman Creek.  Mr. Peterson and his brother have found numbers of flint arrowpoints on these former campsites.  A short distance north of the creek the Benedict map locates a “boiling spring”, and several other springs at the base of a knoll (Spring Rest) northwest of the creek and the lake shore.  A trail from the west shore of Pope Lake ran west for about a half mile and there connected with the Shawano to Portage trail.

 

Marl Lake

 

            Marl Lake lies southwest of Pope Lake with the southern shore of which it is connected by a creek (Shung-we Creek)).  Marl Lake is an irregularly pear-shaped lake at the western end of the “Little Chain”.  Its shores are largely wooded and its waters are especially attractive because of their bright sea green color.  Hence its Indian name, Ashke-paki, green.  Its water area is twenty-one acres and its greatest depth is given by the state survey as 60 1-6 feet.

            On the high north shore of this pretty lake there is a group of summer cottages, nestling beneath some tall pine trees.  There are a number of springs on this shore. Mr. Christ Hildgaard, a summer resident, has preserved in the rear of his cottage (Whispering Pines) an eroded granite boulder obtained from along the old Indian trail at or near Rural and thought to be an Indian Manitou shrine or spirit stone.  It is about two feet high and 18 inches in thickness.  Its owner has mounted it on a neatly constructed cobblestone base.

            Faint indications of a former Indian camp site (fireplace stones and a few flint flakes) were found in several garden plots a short distance east of these Marl Lake cottages. If the grass lands between these gardens and the lake shore are ever cultivated further evidence of the former occupation of this locality by the redmen may be found.  The east shore of the lake is occupied by a woodland.

            Indications of another camp site were also found on the west shore of Marl Lake, in a cultivated field on either high bank of a ravine. Scattered burned stones from aboriginal hearths, white quartz and white and flesh-colored flint chips and spalls, and a pebble hammerstone were found here.  This site also yielded a small grooved stone axe and several flint arrowpoints. On the northwest shore of the lake there is a spring.  In the fields near it a few flint points have also been found. The lake banks and bottom lands are wooded.

 

Silver and Brundage Lakes

 

            Brundage Lake is a small lake located about a mile north of the north shore of Round Lake. Silver Lake, a smaller lake, is located less than a half mile west of it.  Both lakes were former Indian resorts.  On the west shore of Brundage Lake Mr. Benedict found several round mounds, and an Indian camp site, from which a few flint blanks and arrowpoints were collected.  There were several mounds also on the north shore of Silver Lake, and a village site.  From the village site both Mr. Benedict and Mr. W.W. Radley made collections of copper points, flint implements, stone celts and pottery fragments.  Other collectors have also found this a good hunting ground in former years.

            Amy Lake is a still smaller pond-like lakelet about three fourths of a mile northwest of Youngs Lake of the Little Chain.  The Wisconsin River to Lake Poygan trail passed by its eastern end.  There was an Indian camp site on the north shore of this lakelet.

 

Junction Lake

 

            The state survey map, the earliest known map of the Chain o’ Lakes region, shows no lake but an alder swamp where Junction Lake is located.  This alder swamp extends along the entire course of the Crystal River from the outlet of Long Lake to beyond the location of Junction Lake.  The lake is estimated to be about 500 feet wide at its widest part.  There is a woodland at its eastern end.  The north shore has a fringe of marsh along its banks, on the south shore there is a tamarack swamp.  Dayton Creek enters the lake on this shore.

            A village site is located at Rural on the sandy and gravelly cultivated fields on the north shore of Junction Lake, just beyond the village limits.  This site has yielded in past years large numbers of Indian implements.  Fireplace stones were especially numerous at the eastern end of this site, where the Crystal River, a rushing stream, leaves the lake on its way to its union with the South Branch of the Waupaca River.  Flakes and fragments of white quartz and of white, gray, bluish gray and pink flint found in various spots on this site, indicate where arrow and knife chipping was carried on.

            During several visits to this site we collected several pebble hammerstones (one of them pitted with “finger holds”), a flint nodule packing hammer, a sandstone smoother, a bone implement, tow flint flake scrapers and several stemmed flint arrowpoints and blanks.  Some pieces of pottery were also obtained. These sherds were of dark brown and of reddish clay tempered with crushed stone particles. Some were ornamented with indentations and twisted cord impressions.  They were evidently pieces of former small and medium sized vessels.

            Both Mr. Benedict and Mr. Radley possessed numbers of implements from this Junction Lake site.  Beyond the eastern end of this site there is a rocky hillside slope in which lie, or are imbedded, large granite or other boulders. Here also indications of former flint working were found.

            At the western end of this site within the present limits of Rural, Mr. Benedict located a group of three round mounds. No trace of these is now to be seen.  The north shore village site extends to beyond these mounds. The Indian trail from the Indian Crossing passed through Rural and pass the mounds and village site.  It forded the Crystal River a short distance beyond the lake outlet.

            Junction Lake has always been a good fishing and duck hunting lake.  In early days the Indians often camped and hunted here.  Camp site indications were reported by Mr. Benedict to be seen on the south bank of the Crystal River, near the ford above mentioned.

            Mr. W.W. Radley reported to the writer the former existence of refuse heaps (garbage dumps) on the village site at Junction Lake. These were of fair dimensions.  When disturbed they were found to contain the bones and scales of fish, and bones of snakes, ducks, deer, raccoons, and bear teeth.  With these, imbedded in the soil and ashes, were fragments of broken earthenware vessels, flint refuse, hammerstones, partly decomposed clam shells, bone needles and other village refuse.  All have been long destroyed.

            A plot of Indian garden beds was located on the crest of Rural Hill in mixed woods.  The rows of slightly elevated beds ran southeast and northwest.  This planting ground was about a half acre in extend.

 

Crystal Lake

 

            This is the name sometimes given to the mill pond an enlargement of Crystal River a short distance east of Parfreyville.  Mr. Carl Brunn, the well known Waupaca collector, once possessed about one hundred flint points, scrapers, and blanks from a village site located on the banks of the river at this place.  The arrowpoints were for the most part shaped in stemmed and triangular forms.  A few were chipped from white quartz and light brown quartzite. Other collectors have gathered Indian implements on this site, which is located less than two miles southeast of Taylor Lake.

            Mounds were reported as on the south shore of Crystal Lake.

 

 

   

THE  OLD  INDIAN  CROSSING

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

THE  WAUPACA  LAKES

 

 

David Taylor Lake

 

            The name of this lake is that given to it on the Benedict map of 1896. This lake, of somewhat irregular form, is located about one mile east of Taylor Lake, the eastern lake of the Chain o’ Lakes.  It is about one-half mile southeast of the Waupaca highway, from which it can be plainly seen.  It is about one-half mile long.

            D. Taylor Lake is an attractive, though muddy, small lake with a mixed woodland of pine and deciduous trees on its south shore.  On this shore a pretty point with a cluster of pine trees projects into the water.  At its northeastern angel a brook, which drains a small pond northwest of it, flows into the lake.  Another brook flowing into the lake at its western end drains two pond holes (Cranberry and Beaver ponds) lying short distances west of it.

            Indian camp sites are indicated in elevated cultivated fields on the north and west shores of David Taylor Lake.  From these sites many flint implements have been collected in past years by Mr. Benedict and other collectors.  Several stone celts or hatchets were also obtained here.

 

Jaquith Lake

 

            This small pear-shaped lake is situated about half a mile north of David Taylor Lake, several hundred feet east of the Waupaca highway.  This lake is about a fourth mile in length and an eighth mile wide at its widest part.  The land surrounding Jaquith Lake, a series of gravelly knolls, is under cultivation.  Evidence of the location of a wigwam site was found on the top of the second of these knolls west of the Kleinschmidt barn.

            Mr. Benedict found a camp site on the east shore of the lake from which he gathered flint points, scrapers, a copper knife and a stone celt.  We found here a pebble hand-hammer, grinding stone and a flint flake scraper.  Some flint chips were scattered over the field.  In this lake are beds of water lilies.  The roots of these the Indians probably used for food or medicine.

 

Duck Lake

 

            A small spectacle-shaped lake with clear water lies a few rods northeast of Jacquith Lake, and just south  of the Waupaca highway.  It is constricted near its middle and is surrounded by elevated gravelly fields.  An Indian camp site is located in a cultivated field on the highland above a ruined icehouse at its eastern end, and a similar site on elevated land on its south shore, overlooking the narrows.  On the west side of the base of this south shore point the writer and Mr. Fred Kast located in 1903 a solitary small round mound.  This mound was 22 feet in diameter and once 4 or 5 feet high.  It had been explored.  Mr. Benedict had in his former collection some stone implements and a small copper knife found on the sites on the shores of this lake.

            On the south shore and at the western end of this lake there is a fringe of mostly young trees.

 

Waupaca River

 

            A frequent camp ground of the Menomini Indians in early days of settlement was at a bend of the Waupaca river, north of the Waupaca highway, about midway between the head of the Chain o’ Lakes and the City of Waupaca.  This locality, Garde Corners, is a few rods northeast of the union of highways Nos. 10, 22 and 54.  Some of the land of this former camp site is now occupied by the clubhouse and range of the Waupaca Gun Club.  The land here, once forested, is rather level. There are many large boulders about the club house and there once were many others in the surrounding farm fields.  In these fields we collected quite numerous hearthstones. Old settlers remember when there were a few wigwams of camping Indian families here.  One or two dugout canoes were sometimes on the river bank.  Two Indian trails, one from the south and one from the north shore of the Chain o’ Lakes formerly united at this site their course being toward present Waupaca.

            In cultivating these lands many stone implements and a few copper artifacts have been obtained.  In the Benedict collection there was a fine copper knife found here.

 

Jacobs and Grass Lakes

 

            A short distance east of Duck Lake were two small lakes to which Mr. Benedict gave the above names.  A pond, Muskrat Pond, a short distance east of Grass Lake, was connected with that lake by a brook.  Jacobs Lake was dry or nearly so during the past summer.  Its bed was occupied by a stand of tamarack and growth of marsh grass.  At its eastern end a camp site was located on an area of sandy land.  In the southeastern part of Grass Lake there was a small body of open water.  A camp site was also located at the eastern extremity of this lake.  There were indications of a former camp site on land on the north shore of Muskrat Pond.  In this pond there is a cranberry field.

 

Shadow Lake

 

            Shadow and Mirror Lakes are two very pretty lakes located at the southern city limits of the City of Waupaca.  A channel connects Mirror Lake, the northerly of the two, with Shadow Lake, and the outlet of this lake flows into the Crystal River or South Branch of the Waupaca River.  Between these lakes and fronting on the north shore of Shadow Lake is the South or City Park of Waupaca.  These woodlands overlooking the lake and channel were a favorite camp ground of the Menomini for years after the first settlers arrived on the site of the future city in 1849 and 1859.  Freeman Dana Dewey, a local historian, mentions that in 1849 the local chief was an Indian bearing the name of Marp, the subchief Peter, and the latter’s wife an Indian woman called Nahkom.*  Indian families also camped on the lake shore and on the hills at the site of the Waupaca cemetery.  Here a creek, flowing from the north, entered Shadow Lake.

            In other places about the shores of attractive Shadow Lake were Indian camp sites, some of these being occupied by the wigwams of reedmen and were abandoned long before any settlers or other white men came to this region. One of these sites is located on the Nick F. Larsen farm on the southwest shore.  At this place camp debris occurs in a cultivated field on the top of a sandy ridge overlooking the lake shore and the outlet marsh.  This ridge is about 200 feet long and more than half as wide at its widest part.  A creek, named by Mr. Benedict Amik Sibiwishen, Beaver Creek, flows through a meadow at the southern end of the ridge on its way to a union with the Crystal River.

            On the ridge the locations of two former wigwams are indicated at both its northern and southern extremities by the presence of clusters of hearthstones, flint chips and spalls, and a few broken flint nodules.  A large broken light brown quartzite blank lay among these.  Quite a number of flint points have been found on this ridge in past years in cultivating the soil.  Years ago Andrew Larsen found in the channel swamp, on a knoll, east of the Larsen house a cache or deposit of flint blades, probably blanks.  These were found buried in a small heap.

            On the north shore of Shadow Lake high tree-shaded banks rise above the lake.  On these hills, at the northwestern angle of the lake, is the city cemetery already mentioned.  East of it a creek flows into the lake through a small grassy marsh.  East of the creek valley is a wooded highland occupied by South Park.  In this park fireplace stones and flint chips are exposed in bare spots on the tourist camp ground, unmistakable indications of a former place of Indian residence.

            At the eastern edge of this highland is another strip of marshy land through which flows the channel connecting Mirror and Shadow lakes, at the northeastern angle of the latter.  Beyond this place, on the east shore of Shadow Lake, a former camp site is indicated by the usual refuse on the lake shore at

 

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*  Early History of Waupaca, printed in 1887.

 

the base of a hillside slope. South of this place a more extensive camp site is indicated in the cultivated fields of the Meyer farm (former Freeman Dana Dewey place) and extending to the Lutheran Orphan Home grounds.  Here many flint points and several copper implements have been recovered.  A large quartzite blank was recently found here.  This camp site extends across the highway into a small sandy field of the Falzbot place, which overlooks the Waupaca River.

            Mr. Benedict reported the finding of a cache or deposit of two large sea shells beneath the roots of a large oak stump located at a distance of about one-eighth of a mile west of the western shore of Shadow Lake.  The location of this interesting discovery is a short distance southeast of the angle of the road leading west from the lake.  The shells were Golf Coast shells of the kind then identified as Busycon shells.  There were in poor condition.  Such shells probably found their way into the possession of the prehistoric Indians of Wisconsin through barter with Southern Indians.  Caches or single specimens of similar large marine bivalves have been found about Lakes Winnebago and Koshkonong, also at Milwaukee and in other places in southern Wisconsin.  One was found with Indian burials in a mound in Sheboygan County.  Several of the shells found have portions of the whorls cut away to allow of their use as vessels, probably in early Indian ceremonies. Others were cut up to make beads, pendants, gorgets, ear plugs and ladles.

 

Mirror Lake

 

            The east shore of this lake appears to have been particularly favored by the early Indians as a camp ground.  Although this shore is pretty well occupied by cottages and other homes nearly every other garden spot and piece of cultivated land furnishes some evidence of aboriginal occupation.  Such a site is indicated by fireplace stones and flint refuse of several kinds in a garden on the McGregor property.  This land rises quite high above the lake shore. A distance of half a block further north fireplaces tones are quite numerous in a garden at the base of a hillside slope on the Lars Larsen place, near the ice house.  Here a small strip of marsh fronts the lake shore.  We were informed that considerable numbers of stone implements have been picked up on this side of Mirror Lake in recent years.  Berlin Street (County Trunk E.) passes all of these old camp sites.

            Years ago similar traces of former camp sites were to be seen on the north shore of the lake in a district now traversed by Lake Street and occupied by the fine residences of Waupaca citizens.

            Indians are remembered by old residents to have camped in small numbers in several places along the banks of the Waupaca River in and near the city.  Mrs. D.A. Brunson remembers Indians camping near the bridge in the 60’s.  They came to town to sell blueberries.  They had ponies and used a travois in transporting their belongings in traveling.

 

Waupaca Falls

 

            A favorite Indian campground was at the Falls of the Waupaca River, at the present site of the dam in the city.  Freeman Dana Dewey describes the burial of an Indian here.  “With him was buried his gun, tomahawk, knife, dog, and pony.  A quarter of smoked venison and a bottle of whiskey were placed in the grave.  The funeral services held at the Falls on the following night, consisted of marching about the grave a number of times, the firing of a gun and drinking from a whiskey bottle.”  This ceremony was intended to speed the warrior on this four-day journey to the Spirit World.

            Quite a few flint point and heavier stone implements were found on this site in past years.

 

 

 

 

 

 

THE  SURVEY

 

            Ever since the writer’s first visit to the Waupaca Chain o’ Lakes, in the summer of 1903, as a guest of the local archeologist, Frank M. Benedict, it has been his desire to some day undertake an Indian history survey of the beautiful lakelands on their shores.  Such a survey was made possible during the summer and autumn of the year 1930 largely through the enthusiasm and activity of Mrs. Katherine Wied, a summer resident of the Lakes, and of other good friends.  Through their efforts a meeting of the Chain o’ Lakes Protective Association was held at the summer residence of Mrs. G.J. Williams at which the writer was present to explain the desirability and educational value of such an undertaking.  It was stated that, although it was rather late in the day for the conducting of survey and other researches, a sufficient volume of Indian history and pre-history might yet be recovered to prove of present and future interest and value to its summer residents and to numerous annual visitors, to the Chain o’ Lakes.  Because of his own deep interest in this project the writer offered his services in directing the investigations free of charge.

            This proposal was received with enthusiasm and during the weeks directly following the meeting, largely through the efforts of a number of the ladies, a fund nearly sufficient to pay the actual expenses of the Indian history was subscribed.  Thus during the summer and autumn researches about the lakes were engaged in by the writer and his assistant, Mr. Theodore T. Brown, director of the Neville Public Museum at Green Bay.  In making these investigations the assistance of a number of friends residing at Waupaca, Green Bay and Madison were also enlisted.  Among these were the Messrs. John J. Knudsen of Madison, Ray Pinkerton, Carl Brunn, Floyd Taylor, Clare Taylor and Dr. E.F. Hafemeister of Waupaca, and J.P. Schumacher of Green Bay.  Mrs. Katherine Wied, Mrs. Hollister, Mrs. G.J. Williams, Mrs. E.E. Browne, Mrs. D.A. Brunson, Mrs. E.R. Jennings, Hon. E.E. Browne, John H. Olson, Vint. Emmons and other assisted with valuable information and in other ways.  The Survey made its headquarters at the hospitable home of General John G. Salesman at the Wisconsin Veterans’ Home.  The generous hospitality of the General and of his daughter, Mrs. John J. Knudsen, we shall never forget.

            Many of the fine Indian earthworks which the writer saw during his visits to the Chain o’ Lakes in years past had been destroyed, some others had been destroyed, some others had been explored and mutilated by relic hunters.  As both the funds and time of the survey were limited only a comparatively small amount of excavation work could be undertaken.  The director of the survey was fortunate in possessing a considerable knowledge of the researches undertaken about the Lakes by Mr. Benedict, by the late Mr. W.W. Radley of Rural, and Dr. E.J.W. Notz of Milwaukee, in more recent years.  Both Mr. Benedict and Mr. Radly had been the owners of valuable collections of local Indian stone and other artifacts.  Mr. John J. Knudsen had also done some collecting in certain localities about the lakes.

            During the winter months the maps, manuscripts and publications of the Wisconsin Historical Society, those of the Wisconsin Archeological Society, and other State, national and local literature were examined.  The interest and assistance of John V. Satterlee, John Tomau, Margaret Kaquatosh and other members of the Menomini tribe possessing or able to secure desired information, and tribesmen of two other Wisconsin tribes, was enlisted.  Had a survey been undertaken twenty years ago, when many old Indians, who must have known this region more or less intimately, were still alive, a much more extensive body of history and of legendary lore might have been obtained.

            Although not possessing as large a number of prehistoric Indian earthworks as many other lake regions in Wisconsin, the number of mounds formerly existing on and near the shores of the Waupaca Chain o’ Lakes was not small.  The writer’s count shows the former existence of 72 of these.  Of this number all but three were on or near the shores of the lakes of the “Big Chain.”  The greatest concentration of these mortuary monuments was on and near the shores of Taylor Lake, where there were a total of 52.  Of the remainder of the total number four were once located on the shore of Rainbow Lake and indications of three remain on the shores of Sunrise Lake.  There was one mound on the shore of McCrossen Lake, and one on the shore of Columbian Lake.  Three formerly existed at Ottman Lake and six in the vicinity of Emmons Lake.  The only mounds known to have existed on the shores of the lakes of the “Little Chain” were a single mound near Bass Lake and two near Knight Lake.  Of the total number of 72 mounds 52 were round or oval mounds, 12 were linear mounds and 8 were effigy mounds.  A few other mounds were on the shores of the small lakes located east and north of the Chain.  Of the mounds formerly located on the shores of the Chain o’ Lakes 15 remain, the remainder having been destroyed in the cultivation of farm fields, in gravel pit excavations and in highway improvement.  It is highly desirable that as many as possible of these be permanently preserved and marked with tablets.  The present condition of some is a disgrace.

            The excavation of mounds by Mr. Benedict and others in past years have identified four different classes of human interments, these being flexed or folded burials, seated burials, bone re-burials and cremated burials.  All of these modes of interment of the Indian dead have also been found in mounds excavated in other parts of Wisconsin. Small heaps of stone, probably altars, occurred in some of the effigy or animal-shaped mounds.

            Other records of the Indian history survey show the location of 6 village sites, 43 camp sites, 11 groups of pits, several burials in ordinary graves, 2 corn planting grounds, 3 plots of garden beds, one sugar camp, 2 caches or hoards of flint implements, 10 refuse heaps and pits, a possible pottery former kiln, and numbers of former flint workshop sites.  Of the village sites some were occupied in both prehistoric and recent time.  Of the places identified as camp sites some may prove to have been village sites.  This may be shown when surrounding areas, now covered with trees and brush, are cleared or improved.  Doubtless additional burials will be disturbed on some of these sites.

            A knowledge of the contents of the former rather extensive collections made by the Messrs. Benedict and Radley and by other former and present day collectors shows that the early Indian occupants of the Chain o’ Lakes region were well supplied with stone and other tools, weapons, utensils and ornaments. An incomplete list of these includes flint arrow and spearpoints, knives, scrapers, drills or perforator, reamers, scrapers, stone celts or hatchets, grooved axes, chisels, hammers, hammerstones, club-heads, balls, notched sinkers, mullers, net-weights, grinding stones, whetstones, and anvil stones.  Beads, pendants, gorgets, boatstones, bannerstones, discoidals and cones.  Bone awls, beads and tubes.  Implements made of native copper were arrow and spearpoints, knives, axes, awls and pikes.  The small number of stone pipes found were of the ovoid, vase-shaped, square, rectangular, monitor, and micmac forms.  These were made of limestone, sandstone, steatite, claystone and red pipestone.  Of gorgets or pierced tablets quite a number have been found on the village sites.  These were made of both plain and banded gray slate, and a few of other materials.  Several had from three to five perforations. Several caches or deposits of flint blanks and blades have been found.

            The absence in the collections of Chain o’ Lakes Indian materials of such specimens as adzes, gouges, fluted axes, spuds, mauls, pestles, tubes, birdstones and plummets is noteworthy.  Possibly such specimens may yet be found?

            Old John Tomau, who furnished some of the information included in this monograph, died on January 17, 1931, at the Indian Agency hospital at Keshena.  He was buried at West Branch settlement, Ka-no-po-way, seven miles from Keshena.  His Menomini name was To-mau Wa-sa-yah.   His family were the name givers of Tomah, Wisconsin.

            Persons interested in Wisconsin Indian history and pre-history may be interested in reading the reports recently published by the Wisconsin Archeological Society on Geneva and Como lakes, the Chenequa lakes in Waukesha County, and the Rock River region.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
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