Powers Bluff

Photographed September 17, 2014
Arpin, Wood County, Wisconsin
The Indians named Powers Bluff Tah-qua-kik, and was for some years the home of three tribes of Indians; the Chippewa, the Potawatomi, and the Winnebago. Local historians say that some of the Potawatomi lived here as early as 1866. They lived on the hilltop besides the rock formations in houses made of log bark and frames. Some lived in tents. Each dwelling had a fireplace in the center of the floor and a hole in the roof to allow smoke to drift out. There was little or no furniture and few cooking utensils. The [women] did most of the work, making beautiful moccasins and beaded trinkets. They tanned hides and wove colorful baskets of rushes and reeds.

The Indians diet consisted almost entirely of meat, bread and potatoes. The braves traveled many miles in search of woodchucks which were considered a great delicacy. Powers Bluff was an ideal place. Nearby were the Yellow, the Black, and the Wisconsin rivers, the hard maples to be tapped for maple sap in the spring, and the pine forests. The marshes furnished reeds and tough grasses for basket weaving. In the Fall, marshlands and bogs supplied cranberries to be harvested on crisp autumn days and then stored in decorated native baskets. Wild fowl were present in abundance and streams were alive with fish. Wild rice grew in the river beds; mink, muskrats, foxes, and beavers were trapped along the river banks. Deer and bear roamed over meadow and wood. The Indian village stood in a clearing of some twenty acres on the Bluff.
The marker is located adjacent to the parking lot at the top of the bluff at Powers Bluff County Park, on Park Roads, north of its intersection with Bluff Drive, Arpin, Wisconsin 54410.

NOTE: Once you enter the park off Bluff Drive, just follow the steep road to the top. You'll arrive at the bluff where there's a huge park and parking lot. The marker is adjacent to the parking lot. The bright orange and yellow marker is impossible to miss.

Potawatomi History

Ho-Chunk (formerly Winnebago) Nation

Because of Native American religious and ceremonial activities that occurred here, "Tah-qua-kik" has been listed on the National Register of Historic Places: Wisconsin: Wood County.

There are several more historical markers / sites at Powers Bluff County Park:

The bright orange and yellow marker is impossible to miss.

At the park entrance.

Looking up Bluff Drive from County Highway E.

Signage at the intersection of Bluff Drive and County Highway E.

Looking down Bluff Drive towards County Highway E.

Gorgeous fall colors along the way.

Signage at the intersection of County N and County E.

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