Biographical Papers Letter I

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[ed.'s note: additional material on the Native American residents of Beaver Island can be found in the Subject Files ( Box 7)]


There is a death record for "Oald Cornstalk":

Oald Cornstalk, widower, age 96-7-28; died in Pea. Twp of old age on May 12, '99.

Born Mich.; retired, parents Paul & Catherine.


Oliver married Angeline. Oliver's Point is named for him & Angeline's Bluff is where they



1854 - Strang in An. & M. Mack., p. 39

There are in Emmet [county] 5 Indian villages.

  • Garden Island - formerly were on N. end of Beaver - moved within 6 years. A

majority of the males & many of the females can read & some write in their own language. A few children speak English. They are good fishermen & do some

agriculture. Formerly dissipated but now sober and industrious owing to suppression of the liquor traffic. A Catholic priest visits them once a year - at other times one of the head men reads the service. They are devout but there are some pagans.

2. Cross Village - a Roman Catholic priest resides there, supported by the U.S. under

the guise of a teacher. Are farmers with many horses & cattle. They do house &

boat building & coopering & have a saw mill.

3. Middle Village - on the bluff back of Isle le Galet (Skillagalee) Lighthouse. Much

like Cross village.

4. Head of Little Traverse Bay - Le Arbor Croche - most thriving of all Indian towns

in the state. Raise considerable corn & potatoes for sale & have a well-built

vessel of 30 or 40 tons burthen, constructed, owned, & navigated by themselves.

5. Bear Village - S. side of Little Traverse - out station of above & its agriculture is



All these villages engage in fishing part of the year. The fisheries along the east shore are not very productive. Some seasons they come from there to Beaver to the number of 100 boats.




Early History of Region

1668 - Jesuit Mission at Sault established

1670 - Jesuit Mission at St. Ignace established1

1813 - (after War of 1812) - 1856 - Indian subsidies paid at Mackinac. Sometimes

Amounted to $100,000 but in 1854 $20-$30,000.

1 Author notes with a bracket that the two missions were the "first white settlements in the region."