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Grace W. (Unknown) Decorah (abt. 1880 - 1928)

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Grace W. Decorah formerly [surname unknown]
Born about in Wisconsin, United Statesmap [uncertain]
Daughter of [father unknown] and [mother unknown]
[sibling(s) unknown]
[spouse(s) unknown]
Mother of
Died in Wisconsin, United Statesmap
Profile last modified 22 Feb 2020 | Created 15 Feb 2020
This page has been accessed 26 times.
Grace (Unknown) Decorah was a Native American and member of the Ho-Chunk tribe.




Grace was born about 1880.


Her name in several censuses was given as MaKaKah. This may be for the attested name, Mąkaxga, "Dirt, Earth", a name in the Bear and Waterspirit Clans. It might also be for Mąkaga, "Medicine." It's unusual in lacking the feminine gender infix, -wį- (> Mąkaǧᵋwįga, Mąkawįga). She chose not to give her children clan names, nor are they referred to in the censuses by birth order names.

In the 1927 census, just beneath her name is written "(Minnie Payer)", which following standard practice, would mean that her real name had been "Minnie Payer."

Marriages and Children

She was originally married to Frank Sam Decorah, who disappears after the 1915 census. Around 1916, she took up with someone named "Thunderchief," and had one child by him. Grace married a widower named "Luke Green" in 1919 or 1920. She had the following children:

Nina Decorah, b. 1910
Adeline Decorah, b. 15 Nov 1911 (1912 census)
Cecil Decorah, b. 26 Jan 1914 (1916 census)
Dorothy Decorah, b. 1915, d. 28 Sep 1937 (1937 census)
Sam C. Thunderchief (Sam C. Decorah), b. 1917
Jacob S. Green, b. 1920

Nina had died by 1911 and Cecil by 1920.


She died of "cir[culatory] myocarditis" on April 21, 1928. (Death List)


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Categories: Ho-Chunk