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Old 04-07-2012, 06:08 PM   #1
alekkas OP
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Indian Creek Massacre

I've been withing a mile of this marker and park probably 20 times. No idea it was there nor any signs pointing to it. One day on google earth, I saw some pics. I knew we needed to get out there and check it out. Six hour ride with several other stops was only 160 miles - but it was a great way to spend a beautiful day.

The early spring gave us some cherry tree blooms as we left our house.



We made the Millbrook Bridge part of our twisty two lane route. It is an 1897 Pratt Truss bridge that is 600 ft long. Love to stop off and walk it.

Lisa with the new bridge in the background:



Here is one of the full length:



From there, we followed the Fox River for about an hour of back twisty roads to the memorial. There are no signs on the main road. Once we crossed there was a small sign for Shabbona Park. There, we saw the memorials.

Here is a bit of history from wikipedia:
"The Indian Creek massacre occurred on May 21, 1832, when a group of United States settlers in LaSalle County, Illinois, were attacked by a party of Native Americans. The massacre was sparked by the outbreak of the Black Hawk War, but it was not directly related to Sauk leader Black Hawk's conflict with the United States. Instead, the incident stemmed from a settler's refusal to remove a dam that jeopardized a food source for a nearby Potawatomi village. After the Black Hawk War began, between 40 and 80 Potawatomis and three Sauks attacked the settlement. Fifteen settlers, including women and children, were killed. Two young women kidnapped by the raiders were ransomed and released unharmed about two weeks later."

This pic shows the original memorial which was the marker at the time along with a newer memorial erected by the state.



There is also a marker telling about the two girls that were kidnapped.



The park is clearly a respected part of this area's history. I wouldn't say any buildings or shelters are newer than the 80's, but it is clear there are structures here from pre 1900's and several decades in between. One building clearly looked turn of the century, another post WWII, several more from the 70's and 80's. Even the dual memorials span a large gap of time.

There is NO population center are near here, yet the park seems to be tended to pretty well. As we pass by this summer, I am curious to see if locals use the shelters and picnic / enjoy this area. I know we will be back for the shade and water.

From there we headed to Starved Rock State Park - about as cool and tight of twisties as you will find in this area. Gotta say, could have been smoother with the new to me concours. Very easy to lug the old cruiser around there, but I was choppy on this ride. I am thinking the revs should have been kept higher with fewer shifts. Lisa was kind about it and didn't rip on me for riding so lame.

Stopped off in Utica for a wine tasking at August Hill Winery. Very nice and relaxing. Talked her into letting me take one pic....


As we started turning for home, we discussed dinner - and Cajun Connection! Lisa and one of my three sons is vegetarian. Well, wouldn't you know it, Cajun Ron makes veggie Gumbo for lent. Gave them a call, and though the restaraunt wasn't to open for two more hours, they were there prepping and said to stop by. Knock knock knock on the kitchen door and there is Ron calling us in.

Mmmmmmm, smells so good. We got a quart of the meat and a quart of the meatless gumbos. Ahhhheeeee! This is not the first time he has sold us gumbo out the kitchen door! Ahhheeee!

Ron was just about to chop up this gator tail. The blur in the pic is from me moving - NOT the gator!



Loaded with the goods for dinner, we stopped off at our usual return from a trip place for one pop, and home for dinner with the boys. Great way to spend the day.

Lisa really took to the new bike. Surprisingly, much smoother over road imperfections than the fat cruiser. She found the seating position comfortable and relaxing enough. Of course, we had to get it to triple digits just once

Good day, great ride, nice bike!




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alekkas screwed with this post 04-07-2012 at 06:16 PM
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Old 08-25-2012, 05:19 PM   #2
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Alekkas, I just found this, thanks for the report on a forgotten massacre. Next time I'm up in Illinois I'll ride over to have a look.

In case you're interested there is a very detailed account of the attack in a book entitled "Black Hawk: the battle for the heart of America" by Kerry A. Trask. Published by Holt in 2006. This is a very good read about the Black Hawk war.

Thanks again.
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Old 06-30-2013, 04:53 AM   #3
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Yes, us locals do use the Shabbona park, nice write up.
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Old 06-30-2013, 04:56 AM   #4
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Plus here is a blurb about another Black hawk war memorial.

Stillman Valley is a village in Marion Township, Ogle County, Illinois, United States. It lies east of Byron, south of Rockford, and west of Davis Junction. The population was 1,120 at the 2010 census, up from 1,048 at the 2000 census. The village is located on the Iowa, Chicago and Eastern Railroad, on the old Chicago Great Western Railway before it merged and was pulled up. Also, Illinois Route 72 runs through the village, and is near the location for the beginning of the Black Hawk War. The war memorial for the Battle of Stillman's Run is located in this village.
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Old 06-30-2013, 04:58 AM   #5
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The Battle of Stillman's Run, also known as the Battle of Sycamore Creek or the Battle of Old Man's Creek, occurred on May 14, 1832. The battle was named for Major Isaiah Stillman and his detachment of 275 Illinois militia which fled in a panic from a smaller number of Sauk warriors. The engagement was the first battle of the 1832 Black Hawk War which had ignited after Black Hawk crossed the Mississippi River into Illinois with his "British Band" of Sauk and Fox. Following a failed attempt at truce negotiations by emissaries sent by Black Hawk, and probable deception by Warriors under his command. The militia pursued a group of Sauk scouts back to the main British Band camp.
During the engagement 12 militia men were killed while making a stand on a small hill. The rest of the militia fled back to Dixon's Ferry where they spread news of a terrible slaughter at Stillman's Run. It is believed that militia volunteer Abraham Lincoln helped bury the dead at the battlefield following the fight; this claim, however, was still under investigation as of 2003. An article published in 2006 corroborated Lincoln's presence at the burial; though there is little agreement amongst various other sources. In 1901 a monument was erected in Stillman Valley, Illinois commemorating the battle
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Old 07-05-2013, 03:21 PM   #6
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Ironic?

Kinda funny the Major's name was Stillman and they ran. Hence the Battle of Stillmans Run?

I'm just sayin'.
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Old 07-05-2013, 05:10 PM   #7
alekkas OP
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Cool. Haven't seen the Stillman memorial. A good excuse for a day ride!

Last time at Shabonna Co park, there was a Jack Russel Terrier competition. Dogs racing and yelping and doing whatever. Pretty cool. Stop there now each trip by. Just over an hour from home, it's a good first break.
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