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great numbers of horses and mules, and a few asses attended by men and boys. At some distance on the left, the Loup Fork meandered, on the hank of which stream was a bog tine of squaws hearing heavy burdens of fuel towards the village.

The Pawnee in 1828.

Extract from Missouri Republican, Nov. 18, 1828, published in Volume XX Nebraska Historical Society Publications.

"Nov. 18, 1828. A letter from John Dougherty, Indian agent, dated at ''Cantonment Leavenworth,'' Nov. 4, says that 1500 Grand and Loup Pawnee had gone on a war excursion against the whites, principally against the Santa Fe road. The Republican adds: ''The Pawneees (sic) inhabit the plains of the Arkansas, and  are divided into three bands. They are a strong, athletic race of men, but destitute of true courage.''


John T. Irving's Indian Sketches taken during expeditions to the Pawnee Tribes, is the story of the United States Expedition in 1833 to the Otto and Pawnee tribes on the Platte where treaties were made relating to Nebraska lands. The Author gives a vivid account of the well known Otto village on the south side of the Platte near the present town of Yutan. After making a treaty at this village the expedition marched five days up the south bank of the Platte to the Grand Pawnee Village. The following brief extracts are taken from the text:

We found that the Pawnee village had been rebuilt since it was burnt by the Delawares. It is situated in the open prairie, at the foot of a long range of hills, and within about fifty yards of the Platte. The river at this place is about two miles broad, and very shallow, being constantly forded by the squaws, who visit the different islands, and obtain from them the only fuel and building materials, to be found in thus part of the country."

Leaving the Grand Pawnee village the expedition crossed to the north bank of the Platte and the report continues:

"The distance between the Grand Pawnee, and the Pawnee Republican Village, is about twenty miles. The last is situated upon what is called the Loup Fork of the Platte river, and is about the same in size, as the Grand Pawnees. The different portions of the tribe who live upon this river, were formerly united. In the course of time, however, as their numbers increased, the difficulty of obtaining timber for fuel and building also increased, until at last they divided into four distinct bands,


each under a separate chief. The first seated itself upon the south side of the Platte, and is known by the name of the Grand Pawnee tribe. The other three located themselves upon the Loup Fork of the same river, and are distinguished by the names of the Republican Pawnees, the Tappage Pawnees, and the Pawnee Loups. They are altogether distinct from the Pawnee Picks, and speak not the same tongue. During our stay among the Grand Pawnees, we found a Pawnee Pick residing among them, but his language was unintelligible to the whole nation, with the exception of one Indian, who had resided among his people."


Copied from 'The Pawnee Indians", by Dunhar in American History Magazine, Vol. IV., published in 1880, pp. 257-8, 260.

"In 1834 the villages of the tribe were located, the Xau'-i, on the south side of the Platte, twenty miles above the mouth of the Loup. The Kit-ke-hak-i village was eighteen miles northwest on the north side of the Loup; the Pit-a-hau-e-rat eleven miles above it on the same side. Five miles above the last was the Ski'-di village. The sites of these villages were changed from time to time, as convenience or other special consideration might prompt, the average continuance in one place being not over eight or ten years. The Xau'-i and Ski-di villages were never moved to any considerable distance from the locations named. The Ski-di village, it is worthy of note, has always been situated to the west of the others, and they have a superstitious belief that this relative position must never be altered. Hence the term tu'-ra-wit-u, eastern villages, applied by them to the other bands. The Pit-a-hau-e-rat village, for a considerable portion of the time, both before and since the date named, was upon the Elkhorn, some distance east. The Kit-ke-hak-i, as already shown, from their first discovery till Pike's visit, were settled on the Republican.  This has given rise to the theory that in the northward movement of the tribe they stopped here, while the rest continued on. But there is reason for believing that before occupying this region they resided with the rest of the tribe on the Platte. They have the same tradition as the Xau'i and Pit-a-hau-e-rat, concerning the conquest of that country. There has been a tradition also that after the conquest they moved south for the strategic purpose of keeping the Kansas and Osages from the hunting grounds of the upper Kansas river. Their associations with the other bands during the time of the separation were always intimate; their interests and motives were one and their speech identical." The exact date of their return to the Platte is not known; but in 1835 men of the


band, apparently not more than thirty-five years of age, stated that it occurred while they were children; probably about 1812. * * * * *

The tribe, as already indicated, consisted of four bands: Xau'-i, or Grand; Kit-ke-hak-i, or Republican; Pit-a-hau'-e-rat. or Tapage; Ski-di, or Loup. The English names given are all of French origination. The first was applied to the Xau'-i as being the head band, and also the most numerous. The exact origin of Republican, as applied to the second band, I never learned. There has been a tradition thatiIt was first suggested by the semi-republican system of government observed among them when first known; but this feature was no more marked with them than among the other bands. It is also said to have been applied to them because of their having formerly resided upon the Republican River; but vice versa the stream was in all probability so named from the band (cf. The Kansas River from the Kansas Indians, the Osage from the Osages, etc.)  Tapage (also Tappage and Tappahs) is of unknown origin.  In the treaty of 1819 they were designated as the Noisy Pawnees, which I presume was then the supposed meaning of the name Pit-a-hau-e-rat.   In the treaty it is spelled Pit-av-i-rate. Tapage is the French substitute for Noisy.  Forty-five years ago they were known as the Smoky Hill Pawnees, from having once resided on that stream in western Kansas. In the summer hunt of 1836 they pointed out to Mr. Dunbar some of their old villages. The name Loup is already sufficiently explained.

These bands were all further divided into sub-bands and families, each of which had its appropriate mark or token. This was usually an animal, as the bear, the eagle, the hawk, the beaver, etc.; though sometimes other objects, as the sun, the pipe, etc., were adopted. The separate lodges, and even articles of individual apparel, were usually marked with the token of the family to which the owner belonged. These subdivisions have now entirely disappeared, except as partially retained among the Ski-di."




Colonel Dodge with one hundred and twenty mounted dragoons, in the summer of 1835, marched into the Nebraska region and held councils with the Otto, Omaha and Pawnee Indians. They held a council with the Otto and Omaha at the Otto village on the south side of the Platte, about ten miles north of Ashland and three miles southeast of the present


village of Yutan. The official report of Colonel Dodge contains the following reference to the Pawnee nation and location of its several bands:

"After the council with the Omahas we commenced the march up the Platte river for the Pawnee village. The Platte, near the mouth, is a broad shallow river, from a mile and a half to two miles wide; its average depth is not over two or three feet. The current is rapid, and the bottom very uneven, in some places barely covered with water, in others six or eight feet deep. The Platte is not navigable for boats of any size in low water. In the highest stage of water the traders sometimes descend the river from above the forks in small rafts or skin boats. The Horn river, which empties into the Platte on the opposite side, near the mouth, is a much deeper and more rapid stream than the Platte, not so wide, and navigable for small boats to a considerable distance.

Our course to the Pawnee village lay along the valley of the Platte, in some places approaching close to the river bank, at others keeping at the distance of half a mile or a mile. The valley is of a variable width, from one mile to three or four miles wide, and terminated on both sides by a high prairie ridge. From one of the high points near the river the eye could wander over a vast extent of country, possessing almost every variety of feature. Could view the broad surface of the river, studded with islands covered with the groves of timber; the green level valley, terminated by hills of every variety of shape, beyond which there was a successive range of hills, until the view was terminated by the distant horizon. The soil, which is alluvial, appears to be very fertile, and the whole valley appears once to have been the bed of the river. The proof of this is the irregular formation of some of the hills which terminate it. They appear to have been worn in this shape by the continual washing of the water. There is but little timber on this side of the river, only a few scattered trees on the banks of the creeks. Upon the opposite side the timber appears to be more abundant. Saw several herds of antelope and a number of deer. The principal chief of the Grand Pawnees, whose name is the Angry Man, met us about ten or fifteen miles from his village, and appeared rejoiced at our arrival. He appeared to be a shrewd, intelligent old fellow, and very talkative for an Indian. He had a long talk with Colonel Dodge. He told him that the Pawnee Loups had been stealing horses from the Pawnee Peets, and were otherwise rather troublesome and disposed to war. He endeavored to preposses the colonel in his favor by telling him how well he had conducted himself, while his neighbors had behaved very badly. In explaining the relations he stood in to the neighboring tribes, he appeared to possess all the ingenuity of a modern politician.

We arrived in sight of the Pawnee village about twelve o'clock on the twenty-first, having marched eighty miles since leaving the Otto village. We were met two or three miles from the town by the son of the principal chief in full dress. He had on a scarlet-colored coat, trimmed with silver lace, a hat decorated with bands of tin and red feathers, with leggings and moccasins ornamented with different colored beads. He wished

Picture or sketch

Pawnee Village on the Loup in Nebraska. Photo 1871. Similar to the one visited by Pike.



the command to wait a short time until his young men could prepare to receive us in due form. It could be observed from their delay in turning out that they were rather suspicious of our intentions, seeing so large a body of troops come rather unexpectedly amongst them. After waiting for nearly two hours they turned out to the number of one hundred and fifty or two hundred, mounted on their best horses, and dressed in their gayest costume. They formed themselves into an extended line, and advanced to meet us in the same manner that the Ottoes did--at full speed. On arriving at the head of the column they broke to the right and left, and galloped around us two or three times, the chiefs then collected together in a group at the head of the column, lit their pipes and, after smoking a few whiffs, advanced alternately to Colonel Dodge and their agent, Major Dougherty, and offered them the pipe.

After this ceremony was finished we continued the march to their village. The principal chief, the Angry Man, then invited Colonel Dodge to his lodge to a feast, which invitation he deemed it advisable to accept, as they had evinced some signs of distrust at our arrival, and he wished to put them perfectly at their ease. The old chief conducted us to his lodge, seated us around the fire, conforming strictly with the rules of etiquette, by giving to Colonel Dodge the highest seat. He then set before us a large bowl of boiled corn, which we found to be very good. Marched about five miles beyond the Pawnee village, and encamped on the banks of the Platte. The Pawnee village is built after the same plan with that of the Ottoes, but it is not so neat in its appearance. The space between their lodges is occupied by horsepens, where they confine their horses every night to prevent their being stolen by the neighboring tribes, with whom they are at war. The Pawnees, at the time of our arrival, were in rather a turbulent state. The Pawnee Loupe had been stealing the horses of the Pawnee Peets, which had produced some difficulty between them and the Grand Pawnees.

The Pawnees are divided into four different tribes, who live in separate villages and have different chiefs. There are the Grand Pawnees, who live in the village through which we passed, and whose principal chief is called the Angry Man; the Pawnee Republics, whose chief is called the Blue-coat; the Pawnee Loups, whose chief is the Axe; and the Pawnee Tappeiges, at the head of which is the Little Chief. The Arickaras had been living with the Pawnee Loupe all winter, but were scared away previous to our arrival by a lying Kansas, who told them that Colonel Dodge was coming to their village with a large body of troops, and would kill every one of them. It also alarmed the Pawnees considerably until they were satisfied of the peaceful intentions of Colonel Dodge. The different villages are of about the same size, with the exception of the Little Republican village, which is much smaller than the others, containing only a part of the Pawnee Republics, the others living with the Pawnee Tappeiges.

The Pawnees have been for a long time at war with the neighboring tribes. They have carried on a predatory warfare with the Sioux for many years, sending out frequent parties to steal horses and murder any stragglers they may find. They often return with a few scalps and a great number of horses.


They appear to be inveterate in their hostility on both sides, and it would be difficult at present to make peace between the two nations. They were also, at the time of our arrival, at war with the Cheyennes and Arepahas, but Colonel Dodge afterwards established a peace between these tribes. They are the most numerous nation of Indians originally west of the Mississippi, with the exception of the Sioux and Blackfeet, and, if not restrained by the influence of the whites, would be very formidable to their enemies. They have a very high opinion of their agent, Major Dougherty, and he exerts a strong influence over them, and will doubtless ultimately, if assisted by the influence of the government, succeed in effecting a peace between them and all the neighboring tribes. They are already impressed with a high opinion of the power of the United States, and it will not be difficult for the government in a short time to exert a controlling influence over them.

They occupy a country possessing a rich and productive soil, well adapted to the cultivation of every species of grain, and one of the finest grazing countries in the world. There is a sufficient quantity of wood to supply all their wants. There is consequently nothing wanting but a little instruction and industry to make them a wealthy and prosperous people. The buffalo live within three or four days' ride of their village, and they now subsist principally upon that meat. They have parties out killing buffalo and drying the meat most of the time during the summer and fall, and they sometimes move their whole village into the buffalo country, and remain several months, for the purpose of killing buffalo. As the buffalo, however, are receding from them and becoming fewer every year, this will be a very precarious method of procuring their food, and they will be obliged to resort to some other method of sustaining themselves."


Now Located in the Archives of Foreign Relations in the City of Mexico.

Professor Herbert E. Bolton the most noted scholar of America in the field of Spanish historical literature, has an article in the American Historical Review for July 1908, (pages 798-827) upon the original papers of Lieutenant Pike which were taken from him by the Mexican Commander at Santa Fe on April 8, 1807, are now in the archives of foreign relations in the City of Mexico, where they evidently were examined and translated by Prof. Bolton. Translations of these documents and an account of them are given by Prof. Bolton in his article.

The most important of these documents as relating to the route of Lieutenant Pike and the location of the Republican Pawnee village reached by him on September 25, 1806, is described by Prof. Bolton as follows:


"No. 21 is a valuable document, but its form renders it unsuitable for printing here. One of its titles--it has one at each end--is 'Book, containing Meteorological Observations, Courses and Chart of part of the Mississippi, Missouri and Osage Rivers, with the route by land from the Osage Nation, taken by Lt. Z. M. Pike in the years 1805 and 06, being part of a compleate survey which he made of the Mississippi river from St. Louis Louisiana to its source'. The other title is 'Book, Containing Traverse Table and Chart of part of the Mississippi, Missouri and Osage Rivers, with the route by Land from the Osage Towns, taken by Lieut. Z. M. Pike in the year 1805 and 06, being part of a Compleate Survey which he made of the Mississippi River from St. Louis to its Source.' The contents of this book may be summarized as follows:

1. Eleven quarto pages of meteorological observations covering the period from August, 1805, to March 2, 1807, the date of Pike's arrival at Santa Fe. From these tables we learn that in October, 1805, Pike was on the "Mississippi above the falls of St. Anthony". On August 20, 1806, he was "Between the Osage Towns," on September 27, at the "Panis Republic", and on November 30, at the "Foot of the Mexican Mountains".

2. Twenty-eight pages of traverse tables, covering the period stated above. In these tables there are separate columns for date, course, distance, shores, rivers, islands, rapids, and for remarks on mines, quarries, timber, bars, creeks, shoals, etc.

3. Twenty-five section maps, covering fifteen pages, of the Mississippi River above St. Louis, and about an equal number, covering thirty-two pages, of Pike's route from St. Louis to Santa Fe. The first set is in ink, with the addition of colors, the second in black ink only. They are executed with considerable care, and are well preserved. They contain, besides information concerning Pike's route, valuable data in regard to geographical names and to settlements of both whites and Indians. Whoever undertakes a new edition of Pike's narrative will probably wish to incorporate reproductions of all the maps in this book."

It is possible that this original book with its charts might add to our knowledge of the true location of the Pike Pawnee Indian village. It has not been practicable for the editor of this magazine to secure copies of this original document now in the City of Mexico. At sometime in the future it may be possible to do this. Meanwhile we must rely upon the papers which Lieutenant Pike was able to retain at the time he was prisoner in the hands of the Mexicans.  And these papers, as described by Lieutenant Pike, include his own chart and notes of the direction of his march to the Pawnee village on the Republican.

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