Stop 6: The Pursuit West
(Wayside, Hwy. 14, 1 mi E of Gotham)
From parking lot, turn right traveling north
on Hwy 78 back to Hwy 12. Turn left and cross the Wisconsin River
into Sauk City. Hwy 12 joins with Hwy 60. Continue on Hwy 60 West
following the Wisconsin to Spring Green. At Spring Green Hwy 60
joins with Hwy 14. Continue on 60/14 until wayside one mile east
of Gotham. Historical Marker #401.
Early Morning July 23, 1832
Captain Daniel Parkinson writes:
[A Ho-Chunk], and our Indian spies who had accompanied us from Fort Winnebago, left us immediately after the battle. This turned out to have been an unfortunate event, for that same night, the silence of our camp was broken by the loud shrill voice of an Indian from the summit of one of the highest peaks in that vicinity, haranguing, as we supposed, his warriors preparatory to an attack on us.8
After the Battle of Wisconsin Heights, the troops camped at the shore of the Wisconsin River for two nights. On the second night, an Indian, presumably one of Black Hawk's men, yells a surrender to the troop's camp. Unfortunately, during the day, the Ho-Chunk interpreter, Pierre Poquette, has a dispute with a soldier who kicks his dog. He leaves along with the other Indian guides to now Portage, Wisconsin. No one is able to translate the Voice's message. Some of the soldiers do hear and understand the words "necom, peelo" which means "friends, we fight no more." When these soldiers confront General Henry with their translation, Henry responded, "Pay no attention to anything they say or do, but form in line of battle."9
The Voice would stop. Later troops would come upon a buried tomahawk, which is a sign of peace where the Voice had spoken.
Today, some Sauk City residents maintain that the Voice still haunts the Wisconsin Heights Battleground, begging the whites to accept their surrender.10
With the second attempt to surrender unheeded, Black Hawk and his people float down the Wisconsin to the Little Rock River, known today as the Pine River. There they begin to follow the Pine northwest.
Meanwhile, Dodge and Henry march near present-day Mount Horeb to Fort Blue Mound to re-supply the troops. There they finally meet with Henry Atkinson's U.S. troops who will cross the Wisconsin at Helena on July 27 (near present-day Spring Green) to continue the pursuit.