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Historic Diaries: James Doty, 1820

Aug. 6, 1820: Prairie du Chien to Green Bay, and on to Detroit

Editor's Note:

You can read about the rest of the journey in Schoolcraft's 1821 Narrative.

Doty's brief official report on the expedition is here. In it, he estimates they went 1,050 miles from Detroit to Sandy Lake.

Review the expedition's progress on this map of the region from Detroit, Mich., to Bemidji, Minn.

Doty's last entry in his journal was Aug. 5th. He and the rest of the party left Prairie du Chien at 10:00 a.m. on Aug. 9th, bound up the Wisconsin River to Portage (reached Aug. 14th) and then down the Fox to Green Bay, where they arrived on Aug. 20th. Schoolcraft kept his usual meticulous journal of this trip, which can be seen here.

At Green Bay, Cass dismissed the soldiers and hunters and shipped the natural history collections to Detroit on the schooner Decatur, which sailed the day after their arrival. On the 22nd, Doty, Trowbridge, and Chase, with five voyaguers, proceeded up the western shore of Green Bay to Mackinac while Schoolcraft and the rest of the party took two canoes in the opposite direction, to Chicago and then around the eastern shores of Lake Michigan to Mackinac. Doty and the northern canoes reached Mackinaw on Aug. 30, and Schoolcraft, Cass in the other two canoes joined them there on Sept. 10. After resting and outfitting themselves for the last leg of the voyage, the expedition left Mackinac on Sept. 13 and reached Detroit on the afternoon of the 23rd.

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