Copy of a letter from John Lalime,
Indian interpreter at Chicago to William Wells, Esq.
at Fort Wayne, dated April 13, 1812
Sir -- By this you will receive information of a
murder at this place, by a party eleven Indians, at a farm
that Russel and Leigh had. A boy and three men were
at the cabin. The boy and John Kelson made their
escape. Liberty White and a Frenchman by the name of John
B. Cardin, were murdered and shockingly cut to pieces.
We have not been able to learn, as yet, to what tribe
those murderers belong. It happened on the evening
of the 6th inst. since which time all communication
between this post and the Indians have ceased. All
the citizens have gathered together in one house for their
The Puttawatomies [Potawatomi] of this quarter are for
war. I presume your situation at Fort Wayne is not
better than ours at this post. A few Indians have
appeared at this post since the above affair took
place, but we cannot learn who the rascals were. Two
half Indians and a Frenchman deserted from this place five
days ago, and joined the Indians. We are informed
that the chiefs of St. Joseph have gone to Fort Wayne to
council with you. No reliances should be put in
anything they say, for they will only tell stories and
pretend to be innocent; they must know those Indians that
has done the mischief at this place.
I am this moment informed that our spies have seen a
number of Indians on the other side of the river. A
party of seven Indians arrived late this evening, from the
Killamack, with a white flag. We have had no talk
with them yet. They pretend to know nothing about
those fellows that have been murdering us.