Native American History at the Dixon Historic Center

Native American History at the Dixon Historic Center

A few weeks ago we had the honor of visiting the Dixon Historic Center’s open house where they were focusing on their two new exhibits. One focused on Native American influences in the Midwest and primarily on Black Hawk and the Sauk Indians, and the other focused on the American Farmer and the settling of the prairie.

The Dixon Historic Center information states, “By the middle of the 1700’s, the Sauk had moved from the Lower Wisconsin River to a site on the eastern shores of the Upper Mississippi River known today as Rock Island, Illinois. There the Sauk developed the largest village of the time and named it Saukenuk. At its height, Saukenuk sustained 2,000 to 3,000 inhabitants who cultivated up to 800 acres of glacial-fertilized land. A handful of additional Sauk villages were established nearby, but none approached the grandeur of Saukenuk.”

The exhibits even offered talking figures one of Black Hawk and his father offering insight into the history of the Native American’s that were here long before white settlers ever walked the land.

Sadly we learned that while the Sauks were in their winter hunting grounds took over their huts started farming over their burial site and assumed control of the rich land where Black Hawk was born in 1767.

The result eventually was the Black Hawk war that changed the dynamics of the population of northern Illinois and Iowa for all time.

This is a great stop to learn about our 40th President, the center is in the school where Reagan attended the 5th, 6th and 7th grade.

Contact the Center at 815-288-5508 or comm@dixonhistoriccenter.org if you have questions. The center is open 9-4 Monday – Friday every day. The Dixon Historic Center is located at 205 West Fifth Street, Dixon, IL 61021.