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Dictionary of Wisconsin History

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Search Results for: Keyword: 'peshtigo'

Term: Battle of Mole Lake (Historic Marker Erected 1962)


Hwy. 55, 0.5 mi. N of Mole Lake, Forest County 

This is the home of the Sokoagon Band of the Chippewa tribe. According to tradi­tion handed down from one generation to the next, the first chief of the Band was Getshee Ki-ji-wa-be-she-shi, or the Great Marten. Each summer the Sokoagon Band came to Mole Lake to fish and hunt, and in the fall they harvested the wild rice before they followed the deer herds into the swamps of the Peshtigo River for the winter season. About 1806 bands of Sioux from the north and west tried to gain control of the rice boats. A fierce hand-to-hand battle resulted. The Indians, armed with bows and arrows and clubs, fought a long, hard battle. Over 500 Chippewa and Sioux were killed and were buried here in a common mound. The battle was expensive for the Sioux, who retreated westward and never again attempted to return.

[Source: McBride, Sarah Davis. History Just Ahead (Madison:WHS, 1999).]

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