Ayer, Elizabeth Taylor (1803–1898)

Elizabeth Taylor Ayer's life spanned nearly the entire nineteenth century. In an era when women rarely had professional careers, her work as a teaching missionary gave her more status and independence than most women enjoyed.

Black and white photograph of Ho-Chunk leader, Winneshiek II, likely at Fort Snelling, 1863

Winneshiek II, Ho-Chunk resistance leader

Ho-Chunk leader, Winneshiek II, likely at Fort Snelling, 1863. Winnesheik II led Ho-Chunk resistance against the treaty of 1859. His band was the last to submit to removal from Minnesota.

Black and white photograph of the Ho-Chunk leader Baptiste Lasallier wearing a mix of American Indian and Euro-American clothing, c.1855.

Baptiste Lasallier, Ho-Chunk leader

Black and white photograph of the Ho-Chunk leader Baptiste Lasallier wearing a mix of American Indian and Euro-American clothing, c.1855. After the treaty of 1859 the U.S. government recognized Lasallier as the "head chief" of the Ho-Chunk at Blue Earth.

Black and white photo print of the Ho-Chunk (Winnebago) leader Baptiste Lasallier (center) with Indian Agent Charles H. Mix (right) and an Indian supply merchant from New York (left), 1857.

Baptiste Lasallier, Ho-Chunk (Winnebago) leader, with Charles H. Mix, Indian agent, and an Indian supply merchant from New York

Black and white photo print of the Ho-Chunk (Winnebago) leader Baptiste Lasallier (center) with Indian Agent Charles H. Mix (right) and an Indian supply merchant from New York (left), 1857.

Black and white photo print of Ho-Chunk (Winnebago) Indian Agency, c. 1860.

Ho-Chunk (Winnebago) Indian Agency on the Owatonna Road near Mankato

Black-and-white photo print of the Ho-Chunk (Winnebago) Indian Agency, c.1860.

The Ho-Chunk and Blue Earth, 1855–1863

In 1855 a federal treaty moved the Ho-Chunk (Winnebago) people from their reservation near Long Prairie to a site along the Blue Earth River. The Ho-Chunk farmed the area's rich soil with some success, but drew the hostility of white neighbors who wanted the land for themselves. Though they did not participate in the U.S.-Dakota War of 1862 they were exiled from Minnesota during the conflict's aftermath.

Black and white photograph of Ho-Chunk leader Little Hill, who was one of his people's leading orators, c.1865.

Little Hill, Ho-Chunk leader

Ho-Chunk leader Little Hill was one of his people's leading orators, c.1865.

Black and white photograph of Ho-Chunk leader, Winneshiek II, c.1865.

Winneshiek II, Ho-Chunk leader

Ho-Chunk leader, Winneshiek II, c.1865.

Black and white photograph of Winneshiek II (second from left) and other Ho-Chunk leaders, c.1865.

Winneshiek II (second from left) and other Ho-Chunk leaders

Winneshiek II (second from left) and other Ho-Chunk leaders, at Fort Snelling, c.1865. The man third from the left is thought to be Waukon Decorah, a leader in Ho-Chunk diplomatic relations with the United States.

Black and white photograph of a Ho-Chunk woman sitting outside a shelter. Taken by Benjamin Franklin Upton in 1858.

Ho-Chunk woman and basswood wigwam

Black and white photograph of a Ho-Chunk woman sitting outside a shelter. Taken by Benjamin Franklin Upton in 1858.

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