Šųkjąksépka Black Wolf
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Šųkjąksépka Black Wolf (abt. 1785 - abt. 1847)

Šųkjąksépka Black Wolf
Born about in Wisconsinmap
Son of and [mother unknown]
[spouse(s) unknown]
Died about at about age 62 in Portage, Columbia, Wisconsin, United Statesmap
Profile last modified | Created 19 Dec 2019
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Šųkjąksépka Black Wolf is a part of Wisconsin history.
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Šųkjąksépka was Ho-Chunk.
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Šųkjąksépka Black Wolf is Notable.




"Black Wolf" in Hocąk is Šųkjąksépka, which is from šųkjąk, "wolf" (< šųk, "canine, dog" and jąk, cąk, a superlative); sep, "black, dark"; and -ka, a definite article suffix used in personal names. The name is usually associated with the Wolf Clan. However, Lurie remarks (Check List, 57, #22), "Although the name may also be found in the Wolf Clan, this individual is recalled as a member of the Bear Clan." Proof of this may be seen in the name of his son, Mąną́pĕnįka, "Little Soldier," soldiers being the mąną́pĕ or police, whose office was the exclusive function of the Bear Clan. The Wolf and Bear were friendship clans.


Spoon Decorah said, “Black Wolf was the uncle of Gray Eagle’s Eye, my present squaw; Dandy was her cousin …” (Narrative, 451-452)


Juliette Kinzie in her Wau Bun (73-74) says, "There was Black-Wolf, whose lowering, surly face was well described by his name. The fierce expression of his countenance was greatly heightened by the masses of heavy black hair hanging round it, quite contrary to the usual fashion among the Winnebagoes. They, for the most part, remove a portion of their hair, the remainder of which is drawn to the back of the head, clubbed and ornamented with beads, ribbons, cock's feathers, or, if they are so entitled, an eagle's feather for every scalp taken from an enemy."

Life Events

Black Wolf was a large man and rose to the rank of War Chief. He fought on the side of the British and was at Mackinac and Prairie du Chien in the War of 1812. (Lawson, 66) He was one of four chiefs, accompanied by 40 warriors who appeared in the peace negotiations between the British and Americans at Mackinac on June 3, 1815. (Papers, 142)


His village was located seven miles south of Oshkosh on the shore of Lake Winnebago. (Grignon, 208, 288) The village had only about 40 lodges. In 1832, Kinzie (Rolls, #33, Black Wolf's Village) records that his village had 192 souls. Black Wolf himself had a family of 22 (5 men, 1 woman, and 11 children). His village had been located at this site since 1816 (Radin, 51), and Hocąk campfires were seen there as late as 1846.


He is believed to have died at Portage in 1847. (Jipson, 239)

Place Name Memorials

Black Wolf is still remembered in "Black Wolf Point" (43°55'39.0"N 88°28'17.0"W) and the town of Black Wolf.


  • Nancy Oestreich Lurie, "A Check List of Treaty Signers by Clan Affiliation," Journal of the Wisconsin Indians Research Institute, 2, #1 (June, 1966): 50-73.
  • Juliette Augusta McGill Kinzie, Wau-Bun, The "Early Day" in the North-west (Chicago & New York: Rand, McNally & Company, 1873 [1856]).
  • Augustin Grignon, "Seventy-Two Years’ Recollections of Wisconsin," Collections of the State Historical Society of Wisconsin, III (1857): 295 [208, 288].
  • Spoon Decorah, "The Narrative of Spoon Decorah," in an Interview with Reuben Gold Thwaites, Wisconsin Historical Collections, XIII (1895): 448-462.
  • Publius V. Lawson, "Summary of the Archaeology of Winnebago County, Wisconsin", The Wisconsin Archeologist, Volume 2, #2-3 (Jan.-April, 1903): 40-85 [66].
  • "Papers of Capt. T. G. Anderson, British Indian Agent," Wisconsin Historical Collections, X (1888): 142-149 [142].
  • Norton William Jipson, Story of the Winnebagoes (Chicago: The Chicago Historical Society, 1923). This is an unpublished typescript.
  • Paul Radin, The Winnebago Tribe (Washington: U. S. Government Printing Office, 1923).

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