Trail Of Death Journey

Journal notes walking the "Trail of Death" tracing the Potawatomi Indians forced removal from Indiana to Kansas in 1838. This blog is in process of being re-ordered and moved to

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Location: Marion, Indiana, United States

Professor Emeritus


Day 24 Long Point --253 miles
Sept. 27, 1838; May 18, 2006

Continuing down the river the party passed through Decatur as the Indians continued to “scour the prairies in seach of game.” They were seccessful. The quantity of venison was so great the leaders did not have to issue rations of beef and flour The journel puts it “the camp- is now full of venison.” One of the assistant conductors left the group today sick, turning back to indiana and he was not replaced. Water was plentiful and the leaders were encouraged that the future might improve. Even forage for the horses was less difficult to procure. With a feast of venison to enjoy and nobody dying on this day the journal-writer was encouraged, though there was no official report from the docors, they were still sick. They camped at long Point (near present Niantic) after 14 miles.

AS FOR ME I ate a big breakfast of something besides venison, then found a laundramat where I could fluff up my sleeping bag and dry out its constantly more soggy condition in the rain, then walked into downtown Decatur for a long interview with the newspaper who featured the story on Friday including a great map and Picture Thanks Alicia for a good story!

I gathered up a pile of mail for answering the next days, and dumped my Solomon shoes in the garbage can in the city park, consumating my remarriage to my new balance sneakers at the city park. By evening I had reached Long Point/Niantic, where Michael McNamer (pastor of the local Wesleyan Church) met my two companions of the last fours days—Phil and Jason and hauled them back to their car left at the Sidney post office at the beginning of the week. I found the stone marker in Niantic then walked West out of town until I found a tiny slice where I could put up my tent next to a field of winter wheat. For the last four nights I had lots of conversation and friendship—this night was quiet except for the occasional howling of farm dogs checking up on each other through the night. And I read mail.


Blogger Jim and Jaena said...

Glad you all are safe. It is disheartening to read of more Indians dying (especially the children) but even more disturbing that no one (except Father Petit) seemed to care or did anything to prevent it. Maybe deaths during a long journey was unavoidable, but it seems more likely that the Indians' lives were simply not valued.

12:20 PM  

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