Hi! While going through some of my old files I found some maps I had done for a Powerpoint presentation that may help in visualising the area under discussion:
We left the story at that small island on the Saginaw River where the invading warriors had exterminated the Sauk garrison.
The Chippewa/Potawatomi force moved up the Saginaw to the confluence of the Cass, Shiawassee and Tittabawassee rivers where the main force divided sending a group up each of those rivers. The band that moved up the Shiawassee divided again sending warriors up the Flint River. There were many small villages on these rivers and each one was overpowered and many were slain. A few from each battle escaped always fleeing upstream.
There were three particularly large Sauk towns on the Saginaw tributaries. One was located on the bluffs of the Flint River near the present-day town of Flushing, another just a few miles up the Tittabawassee. The third was located on the Cass River at the bend where Bridgeport now stands. The Sauk that were killed at their town on the Tittabawassee were buried in a mass grave on the banks of that river creating a large burial mound.
After each battle some Sauk survivors escaped always fleeing west. They gathered on the eastern shore of Lake Michigan where they fled across the lake to Wisconsin. This left a large expanse of territory in central Michigan empty. The victors returned to Mackinaw Island with the twelve women captives. They were the only prisoners taken.
A grand council was held to determine what to do with the twelve and to consider the appropriation of the territory gained. The elders decided to send the twelve women west to be put under the protection of the Sioux. This angered many of the young men because they wanted to put them to death by torture. The territory on the east side of Lake Huron and the St. Clair River district was given to the Ottawa and Petun as new hunting grounds.
The Saginaw watershed was shared by the Chippewa and Potawatomi as a neutral hunting ground. However, as they ventured into the new territory some unfortunate occurence seemed to happen to each hunting party. After some time they began to surmise that some Sauk warriors were still there lurking about seeking their revenge. Others thought the territory haunted with the spirits of the slain Sauk warriors. Eventually the territory was avoided and only used as a place of exile for members who had committed serious crimes.
NEXT WEEK: The Jesuits arrive in Huronia.