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Sam Wapawahiguga Decorah (abt. 1842)

Sam Wapawahiguga Decorah aka Decorra
Born about in Wisconsin Territory, United Statesmap
Son of [father unknown] and [mother unknown]
[sibling(s) unknown]
Husband of — married [date unknown] [location unknown]
Husband of — married 1865 (to 2 Dec 1929) in Wisconsin, United Statesmap
Died [date unknown] [location unknown]
Profile last modified | Created 14 Sep 2020
This page has been accessed 184 times.
Sam was Ho-Chunk.




Sam was born about 1842 in Wisconsin Territory. (1905 & 1910 censuses) Sam and Frank appear to have been brothers, and it has been suggested that they are sons of "Spoon" Decora.


His Hocąk name was given as WauPaWahHeGooKah. (1905 census) This is for Wapawahiguga, from wapa, "head"; wahi, "to make them, to carry them, to take them"; gu, "to come back"; -ga, a definite article suffix used in personal names. This can be rendered as, "He Comes Back Carrying a Head," a reference to the old practice of taking the head of a slain enemy.


His daughter Emma recalled, “Our family … settled around Madison and Portage and the Wisconsin Dells. My father was a great trapper on the lakes here. He used to catch muskrats and other fur animals and sell their hides. We were nine in our family: six boys and three girls, so when father killed a deer it was a very good thing. We barbecued the meat and dried a lot of it, too, for winter. He caught big fish and we barbecued them also.” (CT 10c)


  • 1905 Indian census; Roll: M595_671; Line: 5. Indian Census Rolls, 1885-1940; (National Archives Microfilm Publication M595, 692 rolls); Records of the Bureau of Indian Affairs, Record Group 75; National Archives, Washington, D.C.
  • 1910 Federal census for Packwaukee, Marquette, Wisconsin; Roll: T624_1713; Page: 9A; Enumeration District: 0153; FHL microfilm: 1375726. Thirteenth Census of the United States, 1910 (NARA microfilm publication T624, 1,178 rolls). Records of the Bureau of the Census, Record Group 29. National Archives, Washington, D.C.
  • Iowa Department of Public Health; Des Moines, Iowa; Series Title: Iowa Marriage Records, 1923–1937; Record Type: Marriage. Volume: 7 (Scott County Thru Worth County). Iowa Department of Public Health. Iowa Marriage Records, 1880–1951. Textual Records. State Historical Society of Iowa, Des Moines, Iowa. Iowa Department of Public Health. Iowa Marriage Records, 1923–37. Microfilm. Record Group 048. State Historical Society of Iowa, Des Moines, Iowa.
  • CT — Madge Yohn, "All Around the Town," The Capital Times, Madison, Wisconsin, Sunday, 13 November, 1938, page 10.

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Categories: Ho-Chunk