James McCall (1774-1856) was a U.S. Senator from New York from
1824 to 1828. In 1830 he was appointed by President Jackson to settle
the differences between the Menomonees and Winnebagoes and the the New
York Indians about their respective reservations. Erastus Root of New
York and John T. Mason of Kentucky served on the commission with him.
This journal was kept while he was a commissioner.
[July] 9. Started for Detroit. Very cold, so that I wanted my
cloak. Forgot my umbrella. Road badly cut up with the great rains &
Travel. Turnpike almost a dead level, except at the Banks of the rivers
and streams; 32 miles to Maumee & 30 miles to river Raisin. Monroe
Village a delightfull spot, although I only viewed it by moon light.
Traveled all knight and arrived at Detroit at 9 A.M.
10. Called on Gov Cass; Mr. Hunt, sec'y of our commission.
Afternoon dined with the govr., with sundry other gentlemen, his wife,
Daughter and another lady. Genl Wool, Lawyer Wilkin, Dr. Cry, Mr. Irvin,
Green Bay, &c.; attended a while at the capitol. The Legislative
councel in session. Quite a splendid building as well as spacious. I am
now writing where I can see from my window the Village of greenwich, in
His Majesty's dominion.
11. Went to church with Mr. Hunt in the fournoon. Mr. Wells, presbyterian, preached from 2nd
Eph. 12: an able minister. In the afternoon read in Law's Call. Wrote
some. Towards evening walked in the street - heard a foreigner preach
from these words: "What shall it proffit a man if he shall gain the
whole world and lose his own soul." He stood in the open air by the
market and many gathered to hear as they passed by. His dialect broad,
his voice good, and words scripture; sound and apparently spiritual. I
could not help biding him god speed and pray that it might be blessed to
the good of some poor soul. But alas, how cold and heartless is my
devotion To god my saviour.
12. Detroit. - Rain this morning. Wind north & cold - continues Rainy & cold.
13. Cool & Cloudy in the morning - afternoon warm and showers.
Detroit. - This city has a government house for the
Territory, a stone Catholic chapel, a presbyterian & Episcopalian
church and a small Baptist meeting House. Became acquainted with Mr.
Browning, a Merchant of considerable business, and a Baptist anti-Mason,
15. Moved my lodgings from Woodworth's To the Mansion house. Bill 5 days, $5.00.
22. Expended for beer, etc. 1.00; purchased a suit of light cloaths, 6.25.
July 14. Fair and extremely warm. Gen'l Root arived at 10 o'clock, Steam Boat superior. Clouds gather for shower.
15. clear and exceeding warm in the morning and continued through the day.
16. the same.
17. the same as To weather, & still at Detroit.
18. exceeding warm. Sunday. Went to the Baptist meeting.
Elder - Davis preached. He was lately from Wales in England. he Baptized
a young woman in the morning. The church is small - only 3 or 4 mail
members. Mr. Mason, our collegue, arrived in the Steam Boat.
19. Met and formed our board. Still exceeding warm. Therm. 90.
20. Still at detroit. weather Hot and dry. Therm. 91
21. Met in the secretary's department. Weather warm - the mercury 93.
22. The Board again met for Business.
23. The weather still excessive hot.
24. The board again met for business. Various Questions of
great moment were raisd. The appropriation so small, $5,000 only, and
much wanted to hold a Treaty, make presents, feed the Indians, &c.
Govr cass recommended the purchase of 100 Bbl. pork, 150 of flour and
300 bushels of corn, to be sent to Green Bay to Victual the Indians
during the Treaty, also to present them with 4 or 5000 $ worth of goods
to be distributed among them. For myself I doubted our authority, as
nothing was said about a Treaty in our Instructions. Postponed untill
Became acquainted with, at Detroit, Govr. L. Cass; Judge
Lieb, Marshall of the Territory; Schoolcraft, legis. councel from St.
Marie; Irvin, do., Green Bay; Edwards, do, St. Josephs; Col. Larnerd,
Judges Abbot, Chipman, Sibley, C.C. Trowbridge, Cashr M. Bank; Hastings,
J. R. Wiliams, Rev. Wm. Berry, Mr. Wells, presbyterian Preacher.
25. Sunday. Went to Baptist meeting. Elder Lamb, late from
Putney, Steuben county, N.Y., Preached: but few hearers. At evening went
to hear Mr. --- a wesleyan Methodist in the Baptist House from these
words: "Yea, more blessed are they who hear the word of god and keep
it." A sound discourse and delivered in a forcible and impressive
26. Monday. Met the commissioners and considered the
resolution of Saturday, but thought Proper To address a letter to Govr.
Cass on the subject. Expenses for Beer, &c. 1.00.
27. Tuesday. Met as usual. Agreed to purchase 85 bbls. pork, 150 do. flour, and 300 Bushels
corn. To be delivered at Green Bay by the 12th August. accepted Mr. B.B. Kircheval's proposals at
85 bbls. pork at $13.50
150 do. flour 5.75
300 bushels corn .75
29. Met as usual. Agreed to have Mr. Irvin furnish a Table, &c., for the Treaty or council.
30. countermanded the above order. Took some pains to induce
the steam Boat Niagara to start Tomorrow for Green Bay; but could not,
for want of sufficient incouragement. Still very Hot and sultry. Got Gen
Root's spectacles mended, which cost .44, - other expenses .44.
August 1. Sunday. Attended meeting. Mr. -- preached: an
English wesleyan Methodist. Last night a violent Tempest with heavy
2. Monday. We ordered some stores for the Green Bay expedition: whole amount $100.83.
3.Tuesday evineng the Boat arrived. Settled my bill, 20 days - $20.00; washing .81. I have been here 25 days.
4. Wednesday. Started from detroit at 11 o'clock A.M.
From: M'CALL'S JOURNAL OF A VISIT TO WISCONSIN IN 1830. In Collections of the State Historical Society of Wisconsin. 12 (1892): 179 -182.
McCall, Ansel J. Sketch of James McCall. Collections of the State Historical Society of Wisconsin 12 (1892): 170 - 172.