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Near Knowlton in Marathon County, Wisconsin — The American Midwest (Great Lakes)
 

John Baptiste DuBay

1810 — 1887

 
 
John Baptiste DuBay Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Keith L, July 18, 2007
1. John Baptiste DuBay Marker
Inscription.  Son of a Menominee Indian Princess • Son-in-Law of Chief Oshkosh • Treaty-Maker • Interpreter • Indian Trader • Firm Friend of White Men.
 
Erected 1945 by George W. Mead, president of Consolidated Water Power & Paper Company.
 
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Cemeteries & Burial SitesCommunicationsIndustry & CommerceNative Americans.
 
Location. 44° 42.232′ N, 89° 40.389′ W. Marker is near Knowlton, Wisconsin, in Marathon County. Marker is on Old U.S. Highway 51 South,, 0.1 miles south of School Road, on the right when traveling south. Monument is in the Knowlton Cemetery; 0.8 miles south of Knowlton. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Mosinee WI 54455, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 5 other markers are within 13 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Du Bay Trading Post (approx. 2.1 miles away); Joseph Dessert Library (approx. 6.2 miles away); In Memoriam (approx. 6.9 miles away); Jordan Dam and Power Plant
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(approx. 12.2 miles away); Buttons from the River (approx. 12.8 miles away).
 
More about this marker. After Lake DuBay was created in 1942, an older headstone for DuBay was replaced by this piece of Wausau granite.
 
Regarding John Baptiste DuBay. Death of John B. DuBay
The death of the above named well known, and in some respects remarkable individual, took place at his home on the Wisconsin River above this city last Tuesday. He had been gradually failing for some time, but was really sick only about two weeks. The funeral took place on Thursday, with interment in the Knowlton Cemetery.
In the death of DuBay, probably the oldest person born within the territory now comprising the State of Wisconsin has passed away. He was born at Green Bay in 1810, and therefore when the Territory of Wisconsin was organized he was 26 years of age; when it became one of the States of the Union he had attained the age of 38. A portion of his earlier years, however, were spent in Michigan, where he was engaged in trading with the Indians, and he claimed to have built the first house on the Kalamazoo River, near the site of the present city of that name. He afterwards served as interpreter for Gov. Dodge, Wisconsin's first territorial Governor, and
John Baptiste DuBay Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Keith L, July 18, 2007
2. John Baptiste DuBay Marker
for many years thereafter was intimately associated in one capacity and another, with nearly all the men whose names are so prominently associated with our early history. For five years he had charge of the American Fur Company's interests on the headquarters of the Chippewa, where the Company had at that time maintained a trading post for about 100 years. The first saw mill ever built at Chippewa Falls was in pursuance of an arrangements made by DuBay with the Indians. He at one time had a claim at Fort Winnebago, upon which a party, under the leadership of one Reynolds, undertook to build a mill. During the absence of DuBay on a hunting excursion, they put up the frame, which, when he returned at night, he proceeded to pull down. In the trouble that followed DuBay shot and killed Reynolds. DuBay gave himself up and was taken to jail, where a mob gathered to lynch him. The latter were told by the sheriff that he had armed DuBay, and they had better go away, which they did. He was tried at Madison, being defended by Harlow S. Orton, at present an associate justice of our Supreme Court, and Hon. Moses M. Strong, and acquitted. He had lived on the place where he died for many years, and in the early history of this country was one of the best known men in it. During his latter years he was supported by his children, but he had handled a great many thousand dollars worth of goods,
Additional Marker on Ground image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Keith L, July 18, 2007
3. Additional Marker on Ground
Home and trading post near here covered by water
and there are people who can remember when he used to drive the finest team between Wausau and Portage.
— The Stevens Point Journal; Saturday, January 15, 1887
 
Additional commentary.
1. Inaccuracy in the marker
It is inaccurate to note that DuBay's mother was an "Indian princess." Native Americans did not and do not have royalty in the same sense as European traditions.
    — Submitted December 30, 2019, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia.

 
Additional keywords. Du Bay; Multiracial Americans
 
John Baptiste DuBay Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Keith L, July 18, 2007
4. John Baptiste DuBay Marker
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on December 30, 2019. It was originally submitted on July 19, 2007, by Keith L of Wisconsin Rapids, Wisconsin. This page has been viewed 3,305 times since then and 181 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on July 19, 2007, by Keith L of Wisconsin Rapids, Wisconsin. • J. J. Prats was the editor who published this page.

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Jul. 20, 2024