Rock Island’s Second Petition

“Farnhamburg, May 19, 1831. “To his Excellency, the Governor of the State of Illinois: “We, the undersigned, citizens of Rock River and its vicinity, having previously sent a petition to your honor, praying your protection against these Sac Indians who were at that time doing every kind of mischief as was set forth and represented to your honor; but feeling ourselves more aggrieved and our situation more precarious. we have been compelled to make our distress known to you by sending one of our neighbors who ,is well acquainted with our situation. If we do not get relief speedily we must leave our habitations to these savages and seek safety for our families by taking them down into the lower counties and suffer our houses and fences to be destroyed, as one of the principal war chiefs has threatened if we do not abandon our settlement his warriors should burn our houses over our heads. They were, at the time we sent our other petition. destroying our crops of wheat, and are still pasturing their horses in our fields, burning our fences, and have thrown the roof off one house. They shot arrows at our cattle, killed our hogs, and every mischief. “We have tried every argument to the agent for relief, but he tells us they are a lawless band, and he has nothing to do with them until further orders, leaving us still in suspense, as the Indians say if we plant we shall not reap, a proof of which we had last fall; they almost entirely destroyed all our crops of corn, potatoes, etc. Believing we shall receive protection from your excellency, we shall go on with our farms until the return of the bearer; and ever remain your humble supplicants, etc.” This petition was signed by almost all the persons who signed the first petition. On his way to Belleville in St. Clair County, where Governor Reynolds lived, Mr Pike stopped over in Fulton County where he secured the following affidavit: “State of Illinois, Fulton County. “Personally appeared before me, Stephen Dewey, an acting justice of the peace in and for said County of Fulton, and State of Illinois, Hiram Sanders and Ammyson Chapman, of the aforesaid county and state, and made oath that some time in the month of April last they went to the old Indian Sac town, about thirty miles up Rock River, for the purpose of farming and establishing a ferry across said river, and the Indians ordered us to move away and not to come there again, and we remained there a few hours. “They then sent for their chief and he in-formed us that we might depart peaceably and if we did not that he would make us go. “He therefore ordered the Indians to throw our furniture out of the house; they accordingly did so and threatened to kill us if we did not depart. We therefore discovered that our lives were in danger, and consequently moved back again to the above county. “We then supposed them to be principally Winnebagoes. “H. SANDERS, “A. CHAPMAN. “Sworn and subscribed this 11th day of May, 1831. “STEPHEN DEWEY, J. P.

 

Early Settlements of Rock County 

 

Source: Historic Rock Island County, pub. Kramer & Company, Rock Island, Illinois, 1908