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Charley Decorah (abt. 1884)

Charley Decorah
Born about in Wisconsin, United Statesmap
[spouse(s) unknown]
[children unknown]
Died [date unknown] [location unknown]
Profile last modified | Created 20 Sep 2020
This page has been accessed 38 times.
Charley was Ho-Chunk.

Contents

Biography

Birth

Charley was born about 1884. He was the son of Sam Decorah and Mary Little John. (1905 census, individual 147; 1905 Wisc. census)

Name

His Hocąk birth order name was HaGaKah, which is for Hāgága, "Third Son".

Lineage

In the various censuses, it seemed from his age, his birth order name, and his neighbors, that he was the son of Sam Decorah. However, Skavlem reported in 1895 that "Old Grandma Decorah, mother of Charlie, Moses and Henry Decorah, appeared to be at least 100 years old." This would make Charlie the brother of Moses and Henry. In the 1905 census Charlie Hāgága is mentioned twice, once as individual 119 and the brother of Henry, and again on the next page as individual 147, the same age (21), the same birth order name Hāgága, but with ditto marks under "M" for "married"; yet there is no listing of his wife. Otherwise, in successive censuses, there is no indication that there are two Charlie Decorahs, so these two entries must refer to the same individual. He called himself the brother of Henry to explain how it was that he was living in the same lodge as Henry Decorah. Miss Skavlem offers an explanation: "Occasionally to vary the monotony of their connubial felicity or perhaps in imitation of the ways of their white brothers, there would be (without recourse to the law, however) an amicable exchanging of wives." This would explain the "shell game" done with Charlie Decorah, as well as similar anomalies encountered in the other brothers' marriages.

Marriage

Charlie appears to have married just one woman, Lilly B. (maiden name unknown). They had two daughters together:

Mattie (1908 - 2 Aug 1928) (1929 census)
Mary (1911 - 3 Jan 1934)

Mattie died young at age 20; and Mary also had a short life, dying at age 23.

Residence

1905 — the census shows that he was living at the Grand Rapids Agency in Tomah, Wisconsin. As indicated above, he was entered in that census twice.

Sources

  • 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.
  • 1905 Wisconsin State Census, Township or Location: Preston; Microfilm, 44 reels. Wisconsin Historical Society, Madison, Wisconsin.
  • 1913 Indian census; Roll: M595_570; Line: 16; Agency: Tomah Ind School. 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.
  • 1929 Indian census; Roll: M595_570; Page: 18; Line: 1; Agency: Tomah. 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.
  • Find a Grave, database and images (accessed 27 September 2020), memorial page for Mattie Decorah (1908–1928), Find a Grave Memorial no. 186593635, citing Mauston-Oakwood Cemetery, Mauston, Juneau County, Wisconsin, USA ; Maintained by Bob (contributor 47155955) .


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D  >  Decorah  >  Charley Decorah

Categories: Ho-Chunk