Black Hawk Treaty

Time Frame: 1832

In 1832 Sac and Fox Indians turned over their land to the U.S. government.
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“First People of the Prairies,” The Iowa Heritage: Program # 1, Iowa Public Television, 1979.

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On September 21, 1832, the entire nation of Sauk and Mesquakie Indians gathered on the site of present day Davenport to witness the signing of the famous “Black Hawk Treaty.”

Where as under certain lawless and desperate leaders, a large portion of the Sauk and Fox nations left their country and in volition of treaties commenced an unprovoked war upon unsuspecting and defenseless citizens of the United States…

General Winfield Scott, for the United States Government…

…accordingly the confederated tribes of Sauk and Fox hereby cede the United States forever, all the lands to which said tribes have title or claim...

Keokuk and Pashepaho for the Sauk, Wapello and Poweshiek for the Mesquakie, Antoine LeClaire, interpreter. great extent of the cession, the United States agrees to pay to the said confederation tribes, annually for 30 years, the sum of 20,000 dollars...

As a reward for his loyalty Keokuk was granted a 400 square mile parcel of land, including the village he resided in at the time. But only four years later, the Keokuk Reserve was given up in another treaty. Black Hawk was eventually released from prison to live out the remainder of his days among his people. He had lost his homeland and soon after the signing of the Black Hawk Treaty, white settlers flocked into the area.


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