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Historic Diaries: Marsh, 1834

East from Portage Across the Prairies

Editor's Note:

Most accounts of the area between Portage and Oshkosh at the time were recorded from the Fox River. Rev. Marsh's brief account of traveling overland is unusual.

For officers at Fort Winnebago, see "The History of Fort Winnebago" by Andrew Jackson Turner (Wisconsin Historical Collections 14:65-102)

"Mr. Paukette" was well-known interpreter and trader Pierre Paquette (179?-1836).

Thurs. [Sept] 18th

Rose early in the morn. It was remarkably clear and pleasant, the storm had passed over, the air was much cooler and there was a delightful calm. After a season of devotion I went out and had a short interview with Maj. Clark. In speaking upon the subject of desertion he said that there was not half as many since rations of whiskey had been stopped as there were before.

About half past nine o'clock I set out in company with Majors Bushnell and Rees to return to the Grand Cakalin [Kaukauna]. The weather was very fine, and delightful. After riding about 12 m. we came to Mr. Paukettes farm, finely situated amid a prairie and grove and two men, an American and Frenchman, occupy it.

As we passed on there was little which appeared inviting, but during the day we entered a large prairie 25 [miles] long as it is said, which appeared to have a fertile soil and if timber could be found would be admirable for farming purposes.

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