Indian Village No. 5

Five miles north of Forest Glen and midway between the Desplaines river and the lake shore, in the forks of the North Branch, Sec 8 & 17, town Niles was found the refuse of the chipping station and the Glenview Indian village in the most romantic and homelike spot of the whole Chicago river region -- the gem of the Green Bay trail. A spur of the high ground, bordering the Skokie on the west ends here in a beautiful valley. The chipping station here was one of our greatest producing many fine stone implements and weapons several thousand of which are in the collection of Phillip Dilg. The low banks of the river, subject to freshets, were evidently used as an Indian garden. South with the river is a beautiful maple grove where Henry Budde, John Schwartz and John Dewes in 1847 sugared-off 32 gallons of maple syrup.

The Indian mound here was located near the east bank of the Chicago river, which is here the westerly fork, opposite the Budde house and found by John Schwartz of Morton while taking out gravel. There were several Indian skeletons one of which appeared to be that of a powerful built Indian chief having a thatched top head. The skeletons were found upon a bed of charcoal and ashes as if a ceremony of fire had preceded the burial, with the bones of the chief was found a miniature canteen of pewter attached to a chain, also Indian pottery, one celt and some flint arrow points. Mr Schwartz says that some of the bones did show the effects of fire and that one of the skulls may have been that of a woman. Cache holes were also found here, one of which about twenty feet to the east appeared to be a trench four feet deep into the gravel, shows alternate layers of ashes, burnt earth and gravel, mixed with some charred human and animal bones, and Indian pottery then filled to the top with black soil.

One mile north of the chipping station where the deer trail crosses the hill there was a small Indian camp and two miles north, near the west bank of the Chicago river, in the northeast quarter section 36, town of Northfield on the Wagner farm Mr John Schwartz as foreman of the large gravel pit here received so many complaints from the men finding the bones of Indians that he ordered them piled up and cremated. From here north, the whole east half of Sec 25, town Northfield, especially the old Hoffman farm which is in the center, bordering the Skokie marsh on the southwest there was a minor Indian village where large quantities of the usual finds have been made, including pottery, flints, stone implements and hematite. Three miles due north in the northeast quarter Sec 24, Happ farm, town Northfield and bordering the Skokie on the west the refuse of another Indian camp was found. The last three mentioned were all upon a plateau, from one to two miles wide extending north from Glenview to Deerfield and carrying besides the deer trail two branches of the Green Bay Trail, the little fort or Waukegan trail being one of them.

Again with the flowing river which comes from the Skokie to the Selzer, Happ and other farms in the north east quarter Sec 24 Northfield there were camps on both sides. Willow Street, projected, west across the Skokie was the deer trail, John Happ, 1842, who settled in what is now Winnetka once counted fifty deer in a string crossing the Skokie at that point as related to us by his grandson W. P. Happ.

This Indian village also had a number of what were probably hunting camps. The deer trail running north upon the hill and also crossing at one of these camps on the deer trail four miles west at a place known to-day as "The Grove" on the Milwaukee road, in Sec 32, town Northfield. The old homestead of the Kennicotts. Taking its name from "The Grove portage" of the Indians; a portage trail from the Skokie and the Chicago river west to the Desplaines river a distance of four miles and passing through this grove where it is visible to-day just north of the Amasa Kennicott house. This Grove was used for camping by the Indians even in Mr Kennicott's time. The canoes were set in the backwater of the Desplaines river west of here, which in former times reached nearly to the Milwaukee road.

This Indian portage trail known to old hunters as the deer trail, from the Desplaines river to the Skokie, gives us an instance of the many ways an Indian trail was used, from the wild beasts of the forest to mound builders, then Indian trail and finally in many cases the improved roadway of modern times.

From Glenview east with the sandridge bounding the Skokie on the south and east, through Gross Point to Winnetka, we pass an Indian camp near the "big tree." At Gross Point Ave there were Indian camps on the Ridge, extending north with Church road for a mile and terminating in a minor Indian village and observation camp in Winnetka.

South, we had Indian camps at Niles Center and Morton Grove, intermediate trail and river crossings. At Morton Trail D crossed for the Desplaines and Fox rivers and lake Zurich. Trail D from Morton and Niles Center, according to B. F. Hill of Wilmette, extended east to the Kirk place on Ridge Ave where it was worn a foot deep into the sod when seen by him in 1836.