During the spring of 1869, hostilities between the Ojibwe and the Dakota escalated and the White Earth and Leech Lakers were accused of several murders. The rising tensions between the tribes was worrisome to the government agents who were waiting to settle white men in the Red River valley, which would be difficult if there was a wholesale war happening. Father Genin, a Catholic priest with ties to the Ojibwe and Dakota communities took it upon himself to invite representatives from the various bands to come to Fort Abercrombie in August, 1870.
The Indians weary of fighting heeded his call. 1,800 chiefs, headmen, and warriors – 900 Ojibwe and 900 Dakota – showed up and attended a three-day negotiation that ended happily on August 15. The accord was signed by all the attending principal chiefs in the presence of the commanding officer of the Fort.
As part of the treaty, Chief White Cloud of the White Earth band agreed to hand over the murderer´s annuities to the relatives of the dead. White Cloud later visited Fort Totten for a similar peace council with the Devils lake Dakotas.
For his part, Father Genin raised a large white cross at the location where Ojibwe Chief Muk-a-dish-ib (Black Duck) and his men were killed during a battle near present-day Wild Rice, North Dakota, and from that day forward war parties were not seen in the Red River valley.
The treaty read as follows:
We the undersigned men of the Chippewa and Sioux Nations considering that it is an evil thing to have war amongst us and destroy each other contrarily to agreements previously taken according to the advice of government Agents and our President himself.
We have this day met at Fort Abercrombie, in presence of General L.C. Hunt, Mrs. Hunt, R. Father Genin, and of Lieut. John B. Rodman, for the purpose of making an everlasting peace and causing the Government officers to enforce the laws already in existence, providing for cases of trouble or war caused to one nation by the other, or to one band of a nation by some band, or bands of another nation.
We therefore want our President to know:
1st That we have this day became friends together forever and will keep our word good.
2nd That we wish the former law which attributes the pay of a murderer who breaks the peace existing among us, to the relatives of the murdered one to be put in force from this day and namely in the case of Nikampines, who last year destroyed the life of two Sioux Indians.
3rd. That we desire that the two Sioux Indians Huioyanke and Oncare 1st relations to the murdered ones be held up as great men on account of their readiness in forgiving the murderer for the good of peace.
Sioux (Signed by)
Ojibwe (Signed by)
Lipenier des Chefs
Lieut. Col. 20th Inf.
John B. Rodman
2nd Lieut. 20th Inf.
J. B. M. Genin
Missionnarie A Postilique
Fort Abercrombie, D.T.
August 14, 1870
Short biographies of some of the Dakota signers:
Ojupi (Sweetcorn): The signer of the treaty was not the original Sweetcorn, but rather his son, Wasuiciyapi (Hail Knocking Against Himself) who later took his allotment on the Lake Traverse Reservation.
Ecanajinka (Almost Standing Steady): A chief of the Snake River scout camp under the command of Gabriel Renville. He later settled on the Devils Lake Reservation. He died before allotment.
Paul Mazakutemani (Walking Shooting a Gun): Also known as Little Paul. He was a Christian convert who remained loyal during the Minnesota Uprising. He was Chief of the Twin Lakes scout camp. He took his allotment on the Lake Traverse Reservation.
Hupacokamaza (Iron Middle Wing): from Lake Traverse.
Visihu (?) Tizihu, Wizihu.
Wakanhdimaza (Iron Lighting): A Chief who eventually settled at Devils Lake.
Wasicuncatka (Left Handed Spirit): Also known as Hotonhowaste (Good Loud Voice).
Miniatahowaŝte (Good Voice at the Water): Later signed the 1872-73 Sisseton/Wahpeton agreement to sell the land between Devils Lake and Lake Traverse.
Wakanukita (Prove his Holiness): Chief Standing Buffalo’s First Soldier who later settled at Devils Lake.
Wakanadiduta (?) Wakanhdiduta: As called Scarlet Lighting. Later settled at Lake Traverse.
Hupahuna (Wing Bone): Later settled at Lake Traverse.
Icahtake (Touch): A signer of the 1872-73 Sisseton/Wahpeton agreement. He died before allotment.
Ŝunkawambdi (Dog Eagle): Later settled at Lake Traverse..
Aadiideya (Lighting Flash): Later settled at Lake Traverse..
Canteiyapa (Heart Beat): Signed 1872-73 Sisseton/Wahpeton agreement. Settled at Devils Lake.
Wambdiupiduta (Scarlet Eagle Tail): also known as Red Feather and Scarlet Plume. He was part of the 1858 delegation to Washington, DC. Later settled at Lake Traverse.
Pejikaġa (Making Grass or possibly Making Medicine): Later settled at Lake Traverse.
Wicanĥpi (Star or Tomahawk): Later settled at Lake Traverse.
Short biographies of some of the Ojibwe signers:
Wabanakwat (White Cloud): Chief of the White Earth Ojibwe.
Nebaneska (Comes Sleeping): A Chief. He died in 1874.
Nijakakijik (Double Sky or Sky that Touches the Ground or Crossing Sky II): A Chief at White Earth.
Okins (Little Bone)
Wapus (Rabbit): A Leech Lake Chief. There is a Waboose Bay in Leech Lake named after him.
Otchipwe (Ojibwe): A cousin of Chief Hole-in-the-Day.
Ayabe (He who rests on the way, or Little Shell III): Chief of the Pembina and Turtle Mountain bands.
Pwanins (Little Sioux)
Cingwabe (White Weasel)
Kwesikut (Tree Cutter)
Nabeniash (also called Naytowash, He Who Stands Examining): A Chief.
Wemiikkons (Waving Little Beaver)
Manito (The Spirit)
Takawikijik (Rising day): A Cousin of Hole-in-the-Day. He was a government appointed Chief.
Makiikijik (Wounded Sky)
Kapiponske (Little Winter)
Ociksos (Little Wind)
Tedatan (Floating in Place)
Otinikans (Little Wind)
Nakanash (First Runner): A Chief.
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A collaborative effort of members of the Ojibwe and Metis communities