Our County History
by County Historian Marion W. Coplen

When Kosciusko county was organized in 1836 there were about 500 Indians living here. The largest villages were those of Monoquet, Musquawbuck and Flatbelly.

Monoquet had a village on the north bank of the Tippecanoe river just west of where road 15 now crosses the river. A few miles up the river near the present site of Oswego was Musquawbuck's village. Flatbelly's village actually was in Noble county at the present site of the Boy Scout camp near Cromwell, but his reservation extended over into our county.

Other chiefs who were located in our county were Wawasee, Mota, Checose, Banack and Topash. Flatbelly and Wawasee were Miamis. all the others were Pottawatomies.

Although we have been severely criticized for our treatment of the Indians, in many respects the Indians were treated generously by the government. Provisions such as salt, bacon, flour, and tobacco were given regularly to the Indian chiefs. Uncle Sam built a brick house for Flatbelly, one of several built for various Miami chiefs.

Our government built a mill fro the Pottawatomies on Mill Creek, a tributary of the Tippecanoe. It was located in what is now the eastern part of the city of Rochester. It was to this mill that Monoquet, Musquawbuck and other Pottawatomie chiefs came for their provisions.

On Oct. 26 and 27, 1832, at this mill, the U. S. government and the Pottawatomie Indians made a treaty in which these Indians gave up their claims to land in this area in return for a sum of money to be paid in annual installments to the various chiefs. Under the provisions of the treaty four of our county's Indian chiefs received four sections of land apiece on which they could live for a limited number of years.

It was the agreement that the Indians were to go west, but many lingered on after the time set for their departure. Moto and his band, whose reservation was centered around what is now the Tippecanoe river park four miles west of Warsaw, were the first of the Kosciusko county Indians to go The largest group left in 1842 as the tribes of Monoquet and Musquawbuck, their leaders both dead, made their departure.

Warsaw Times-Union Sat. Feb. 21, 1953