Marker 399: Indian Lake Passage

© Photographed July 10, 2015
Erected 1997 by Dane County Historical Society
Marxville, Dane County, Wisconsin
43° 11.363′ N, 89° 38.105′ W
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On July 21, 1832, during the Black Hawk War, Sac Indian leader Black Hawk and his band left Pheasant Branch, west of Madison, retreating ahead of the military forces commanded by Colonels Ewing and Dodge. The band fled north following a route past the west end of Indian Lake and turned westward down the broad valley now bisected by Highway 12. The military, despite rain and exhausted horses, managed to catch up to Black Hawk's warriors late that afternoon at the Heights overlooking the Wisconsin River.
The marker is located at a boat launch on the western shore of Indian Lake on eastbound Wisconsin Route 19, a half mile east of its intersection with County Route K, Cross Plains, Wisconsin 53528.

This marker is included in the "black hawk war" marker series. Use the "black hawk war" label, below, to locate all markers in this series included on the Wisconsin Historical Markers website.

The Black Hawk War of 1832
First photographed April 25, 2013.

This media file is in the public domain.

This media file is in the public domain.

To Brigadier General H. Atkinson:
SIR—The changes of fortune and vicissitudes of war made you my conqueror. When my last resources were exhausted, my warriors worn down with long and toilsome marches, we yielded, and I became your prisoner.
The story of my life is told in the following pages: it is intimately connected, and in some measure, identified, with a part of the history of your own: I have, therefore, dedicated it to you.
The changes of many summers have brought old age upon me, and I can not expect to survive many moons. Before I set out on my journey to the land of my fathers, I have determined to give my motives and reasons for my former hostilities to the whites, and to vindicate my character from misrepresentation. The kindness I received from you whilst a prisoner of war assures me that you will vouch for the facts contained in my narrative, so far as they came under your observation.
I am now an obscure member of a nation that formerly honored and respected my opinions. The pathway to glory is rough, and many gloomy hours obscure it. May the Great Spirit shed light on yours, and that you may never experience the humility that the power of the American government has reduced me to, is the wish of him, who, in his native forests, was once as proud and bold as yourself.
10th Moon, 1833.

 The marker is at the Lake Access / Dog Area (visible to the far left).

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