This image depicts a Sac and Fox
village, presumably along the shores of the Rock River in northern Illinois.
The Sacs and Foxes were separate tribes who had lived together in a
loose alliance since the great Iroquois incursion of the eighteenth
century drove them from their original homes in present-day Michigan.
Reliant in equal parts upon agriculture and hunting and fishing, the
Native Americans thrived amidst rich soils, and rivers and forests filled
with fish and game, in northern Illinois and southern Wisconsin. In
1804 American officials at St. Louis identified a party of visiting
Indians there as representatives of the Sac and Fox tribes, and secured
their approval of a treaty ceding these lands to the United States.
Sac and Fox chiefs and warriors never recognized the legitimacy of this
treaty, and resisted their removal to the west side of the Mississippi
River as white settlers filled their ancestral homes. These events led
to the Black Hawk War of 1832.