Removal – Day 8

October 13, 1846
The Kaanseenseepiiwi ‘Ohio River


Yesterday, the steamboat Colorado departed Cincinnati with more than 300 Myaamiaki, the Removal Agent, the Removal contractors, traders, and possibly soldiers.

Trader William Ewing wrote to Commissioner of Indian Affairs William Medill from Cincinnati that the Miami Nation left Cincinnati yesterday. He noted that those who had been sick were recovering. We will see about that in later posts.

Clipping from the Washington, D.C. Daily Union in 1846
News reports of the Myaamia Removal often showed a lack of understanding of the significance of this event. This report from the Washington, DC Daily Union, says Myaamiaki are “comfortably on their way” and describes them as “annoyances.” Source unknown.

As they passed the city of Louisville, most Myaamiaki would have been amazed at this, the second-largest city after Cincinnati that they had ever seen. At that time, Louisville was ten times the size of Fort Wayne.

Later, Removal Agent Joseph Sinclair wrote that they had “found the Ohio River very low, and it was with great difficulty that the Steam Boat was got over the sand bars that are found between Louisville and its junction with the Mississippi.” Although he does not mention it, near Louisville, they would have had to cross over the Falls of the Ohio. The falls and sandbars in the river must have made the steamboat at best uncomfortable and probably increased whatever motion sickness Myaamiaki were experiencing.

A map highlighting the Myaamia Removal Route from Indiana into Ohio and out to Kansas and Oklahoma that is annotated to mark the progress as of October 13, 1846
This map shows the Removal route of the Miami Tribe. The black line identifies the approximate distance traveled by this day. Map by Kristina Fox with annotations by Diane Hunter from George Strack, et al., myaamiaki aancihsaaciki: A Cultural Exploration of the Myaamia Removal Route (Miami, OK: Miami Tribe of Oklahoma, 2011), which was supported by a National Park Service Historic Preservation Grant (#40-09-NA-4047)

In the next installment, to be posted on October 14, we find Myaamiaki still on the steamboat Colorado on the Ohio River.


Post written by Diane Hunter, Tribal Historic Preservation Officer for the Miami Tribe of Oklahoma. Diane can be contacted at dhunter@miamination.com.


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