Indian Village No. 13

Trail P following the grand Calumet on the north from Hammond to Hegewisch runs upon the low and sandy watershed between the river and Wolf lake. Hegewisch could be reached overland at Buffalo Ave & 138th St by going half a mile northeast to the old bank of Wolf lake which was closely bounded on the west by Hyde lake. The ancient outlet of Wolf lake at about 127th St making it a peninsula. This Indian village, directly in the Calumet-Sag canoe path, like Worth, was bounded by the marshes. Portages were made here.

The old bank of Wolf lake is to-day quite a distance west of the waterline and still only five or six feet above it. Mossy grasses cover the hard and "golden yellow" sands, shaded by the scrub oaks, common to the south end of lake Michigan, all surrounded by the waving Calmus, becoming to the squaws to be woven into rush mats. The refuse of a minor Indian village was found here, extending north with the bank of Wolf lake for half a mile from 134th St which together with the neighboring camps constituted one large village. The chipping station here, as well as any other in the Calumet marsh show the native red gravel, although flint of all kinds is represented, as shown in Mr Phillipps collection. Pottery is present, but the hearth-stones are not well represented.

There was continual and natural canoe passage, used by the Indians, from Hammond along the west shore of Wolf lake and through Hyde lake to its outlet at 127th St. A narrow and sluggish bayou not more than three yards wide, an ancient river bed, connecting Wolf lake with the grand Calumet, at the Chittenden bridge, 123rd St. Joe Phillipps, the trapper and pioneer says: "The early settlers traveled this route by boat the same as the Indians. I always went to town by boat. There was water all the way from here to Hammond. We all wore large wading boots, even on the stage line road, from Hammond to South Chicago."

Henry, son of Abe Kleiman who kept up the "Cassidy Tavern" at the Chittenden bridge, also speaks of going in a boat, with a party of three, through this narrow outlet of Hyde lake when as it happened the overhanging branches were festooned with moccasin snakes, five or six feet in length. One of the men who had never seen the sight, although warned, fired at the nearest one, when all dropped like a shot into the water nearly scaring the life out of the poor fellow, who threatened to jump out of the boat.

At the portage camp, 130th St & Houston Ave, Trail P, from Hammond to South Chicago forks to both sides of the grand Calumet. The one on the west following a ridge in the line of Chittenden and Muskegon Avenues, the other, following the Anbenaube or Indian ridge which is the west bank of Hyde lake, north to the mouth of the grand Calumet river. Upon the Indian ridge, marking the outlet on the north and Hyde lake on the west, Carondelet Ave & 126th St, and not far from the house of Peter Rich, Henry Kleiman says there were about a dozen Indian graves. All laid east and west and like the rungs of a ladder north and south. All were covered with ridge-boards, raised three or four feet above the ground.

The Indian ridge was used and made famous by Indians who used canoes, like the Pottawatomies of the woods. It was the only continuous piece of ground running from lake Michigan, east of the river, to the junction of the big and little Calumet rivers, a distance of five miles and near the outlet was not more than three hundred feet wide, but it was a beauty spot in regard to rare shrubbery, trees and plants useful to the Indians. The lakes of tepid water being fringed with hard and yellow sand and the higher ground wth a short and heathery growth. Passing Hyde lake the ridge was a narrow strip of timber with thick underbrush. Indian camp sites were found on the ridge at 120th St and 116th St.

Near Ewing Ave and 93rd St, South Chicago, there was a burial site for Indians and later for some of our early settlers. "Grandma" Mary Ragor, "Munyon", the daughter of the late Chief Alexander Robinson remembers that when about six years of age her father with his team and wagon took the whole family to the Calumet river, to the mother's grave. "All I can remember of the location, I have not been there since, is that we crossed the Calumet river near its mouth and that we could see the water of Calumet lake in the distance." (about Torrence Ave according to Mr Hendrix of South Chicago). "My mother was a full blooded Indian squaw and wore a blue blanket which my father had bought for her. The grave was enclosed with a fence. My father said it was a good place and upon his own ground."