Post by kingsleybray on Apr 5, 2014 4:23:28 GMT -5
I have found on Google Books an 18th century French dictionary or encyclopedia, DICTIONNAIRE UNIVERSEL DE LA FRANCE, ANCIENNE ET MODERNE, ET DE LA NOUVELLE FRANCE, by Pere Sangrain, J. Sangrain, et Pierre Prault (Paris, 1726), which includes new details from the explorations of the trader Pierre-Charles Le Sueur. This important French observer was active in the Dakota or Sioux country on the upper Mississippi valley from 1683-1695, and again in 1700-1701. In collaboration with French cartographers Franquelin, in 1697, and G. De L'Isle, in 1702, he made some important maps which plotted over twenty tribal divisions in modern Minnesota. The dictionary contains data not previously known to me. Here, in my rough-and-ready translation, is what the Dictionnaire has to say about the Yankton.
"HINHANETON, Nation of the Rock, one of those of the Sioux of the West, in northern Louisiana. It is situated beside a small river which waters the fine prairies of these parts, and which runs into the river St. Peter [Minnesota river], at some thirty leagues to the west of the Mississippi. It is one of the discoveries of M. le Sueur."
Coupled with the map evidence, I have concluded that the "little river" described corresponds to modern Rush creek in Sibley co., Minnesota. It heads near modern Gaylord, MN (LaDonna and I drove through last fall!) and runs eastward to meet the Minnesota r. at Henderson. Also an interesting detail that Le Sueur reportedly 'discovered' the Yankton, i.e. he was the first Frenchman to open diplomatic and trade relations with their village. He is also credited with the discovery of the village he called Ouiatspouiton, and which scholars like Doane Robinson and George Hyde have concluded was the ancestral Oglala.
Post by kingsleybray on Apr 5, 2014 4:31:23 GMT -5
In his notes given to De L'Isle in 1702 Le Sueur also remarked that the Yankton were known as the Nation of the Rock "because of an outcrop of red stones which is near their home in the middle of a prairie." This is the Pipestone Quarry in southwest Minnesota, about 120 airline miles west of the course of Rush creek. This east-west transect gives a very good idea of the regular Yankton migratory cycle at this timeframe.
Post by kingsleybray on Apr 7, 2014 7:24:07 GMT -5
Le Sueur met with the Yanktons during the winter of 1700-01, at his post, Fort L'Huillier (modern Mankato, MN). He mentioned that they numbered some 150 cabanes or tipis. Since he indicated that an average of about 12 people, two nuclear families, lived in one tipi, then they numbered approximately 1800 people.
Post by kingsleybray on Apr 12, 2014 3:20:51 GMT -5
Thanks, ladies. It is interesting that by 1800, one century after Le Sueur's day, the Yankton territorial range had shifted to the south and west. They abandoned their range in the Minnesota river valley, which was taken over by Wahpeton and Sisseton Dakota groups leaving the woodlands. However, the Pipestone Quarry remained an anchor in their yearly cycle. In 1700 it was near the southwest edge of their regular range. In 1800 it was at the northeast edge, with their annual movements now focussed southwest via the lower James river (the core of their new range) into the Missouri valley. It's as if the Pipestone Quarry was a pivot on which the Yankton cycle revolved.
This pattern, whereby a group migrates - usually westward - but retains a favoured (or sacred) location as an anchor in its annual cycle, seems to be a recurring pattern when we consider Dakota-Lakota movements. An idea I'm developing.
With his post Kingsley has triggered some important questions that are not yet fully understood with regard to the Sioux oyate. When did the Sioux split into Dakotas, Lakotas and Yankton (about 1500?)? Which route took the Lakota when migrating from Minnesota to the great plains?
Here are a few maps to represent the possible route .
1. The Coronelli Map (1688), which seems to be based on the Franquelin map of 1678 .
On this map the Nadovessians (Sioux ) and Titonha (Tetons) live in an area between the Lac Nadovessans ( in my opinion, the Leech Lake) , Lac Buade (as Mille Lacs identified) and the Lac de Pleurs ( = Lake Pepin )
2. The Delisle map of 1718
Here the Sioux are distinguished as the Tintons (Tetons), the Sioux de L' Ouest (Western Sioux) and the Sioux de L' Est (Eastern Sioux / east and west of the Mississippi). Fort L' Hullier (in the middle) is today's Mankato. The " Octotata " (bottom center) are not the Oglala , but the Otoes. The lake, on which shores the Tintons live, could be the Swan Lake but most likely, however, it is the Big Stone Lake .
3. Then, by John Mitchell a map of the "British Colonies " (excerpt, from 1755).
This map seems to be based on the Delisle map. The Sioux have hardly moved . Plotted is the Lake Tinton = Big Stone Lake .
Post by kingsleybray on Apr 13, 2014 10:07:34 GMT -5
great, thanks gregor for putting up the maps. More Le Sueur info' to process.
Interested in your reasoning for Coronelli's Lac Nadovessans being Leech Lake?
Hennepin's map would be a useful one to try to put up, because he locates the Yankton - specific village sense? or wider Yankton-Yanktonai grouping? - on a lake to the northwest of the upper Mississippi valley - maybe Red Lake, MN? Hennepin's data are derived from his brief sojourn among the Sioux of the East, spring-summer 1680. By the time Le Sueur appears in the region - he first went to the upper Mississippi just three years later, in 1683 - the Yankton are located much further south. If this reflects reality it suggests that the Yankton moved southward suddenly, in the early 1680s. The most likely cause would seem to be Cree-Assiniboine raiding, armed with British firearms obtained at Hudson's Bay.
Hi Kingsley, these are my thoughts on Leech Lake. I do not believe that De La Salle or the Jesuits or Récollets (nor the cartographer Franquelin) visited Lac Nadovessans (=Lac des Issatis? =Leech Lake) personally about 1684 – in contrast to Mille Lacs and Lake Pepin. And on the map is no waterway leading from the south into this lake, as this access was not known. I think that the information on the Lac Nadovessans result from reports of Natives or other trappers. I think they said for example "Lac Nadovessans is four times the size" of Mille Lacs and "he has four tributaries , etc. " The location and proportions of Mille Lacs and Lake Pepin were known and have been presented (nearly) accordingly. The cartographer then processed the information on the Lac Nadovessans (Leech Lake) in his map (1678/1688). I searched on Google Maps for a correspondingly large lake, which also has inflows from the North. And this Lake in question was Leech Lake for me. In addition, it is known that the Sioux (Mdewakanton Dakota?) settled from about 1650 to about 1750 in the Red Lake and Leech Lake area before they were expelled by the Ojibway/ Anishinabe and pressed into southern areas.
Post by historyisalive on Apr 30, 2014 10:00:58 GMT -5
I'm glad you two are on it. I have been talking to walls for years in Iowa. I have about 70 Dakota/Nakota/Lakota sites in Iowa I mapped, that was only one months worth of work to show as an example!! And it falls on deaf ears, not only to Iowa State Preservation office, Iowa Archeaologists but even the tribes themselves.
I have to dash now, but hope to discuss this PROJECT with you soon.
Post by kingsleybray on Apr 30, 2014 11:51:40 GMT -5
Nice to hear from you, historyisalive. There are twenty-plus of these Le Sueur entries, many with geographical details that can help us map in detail the Dakota-Lakota world as it appeared in the last quarter of the 1600s, the period of first contact between them and Europeans.
The study of place names has been overlooked for years. I need to have you look at Where the Rivers Gather and the Rivers Meet. (I think I butchered the title). By Paul Durand. This book based mostly on Nicollet's place names and interviews with Dakotas now sells for $200.(original price $15.00 ten years ago). I think historians have avoided place names because of lack of expertise in the languages, both European and Native American. When I first met Durand in 1976 or so, he asked me about the Indian names around Devils Lake. This encounter led me on a never ending quest for Dakota Place names. Time is getting short for the elders all across the country. it is almost too late in many areas and Tribes to record these names directly from the people. I urge everyone interested to compile a list for their area. One thing I do know is that the French usually kept the original Indian name whereas the English changed most of them. LouieG
Post by kingsleybray on May 1, 2014 2:29:53 GMT -5
Thanks Louie, I kick myself nearly everyday because I never picked up a copy of Paul Durand's book when I could afford it! Because today I can't!
There is online an image of Mr Durand's main map, with all his handwritten Dakota names for places and rivers - but too small to actually read them. If someone could upload a usable image it would be really useful. I don't mean to infringe any copyright, only for study.
I'm in total agreement about the value of place names.