“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Near Odanah in Ashland County, Wisconsin — The American Midwest (Great Lakes)

The Bad River

The Bad River Marker image. Click for full size.
By Rich Eggleston, July 11, 2006
1. The Bad River Marker
Inscription. The Mauvaise (Bad) River was so named by the French due to the difficulties of its navigation. The Indians called it Mushkeezeebi or Marsh River. In 1845 the Rev. L.H. Wheeler, Protestant missionary at La Pointe, planned an agricultural settlement near the mouth of the Bad River where the Indians had for many years made their gardens. He named the settlement “Odanah,” a Chippewa word meaning “village.” About 1850 a determined effort was begun to compel the Indians to move west of the Mississippi. Mr. Wheeler visited the lands to which it was proposed the Lake Superior Chippewa should go. He returned with the conviction it would be a deed of mercy for the government to shoot the Indians rather than send them to the new region. "They (the Chippewa) are fully determined not to go. They have lived two years without their payments, and find they do not starve or freeze." Mr. Wheeler's pleadings were not in vain. The government resumed the payments and his ideas of justice toward the Chippewa were substantially embodied in a treaty made with them in 1854 providing for them three reservations, at Odanah, at Lac Court Oreilles and at Lac du Flambeau.
Erected 1957 by Wisconsin Historical Society. (Marker Number 70.)
View to West from US 2 image. Click for full size.
Google Street View (2016 Google Street View), October 2015.
2. View to West from US 2
The marker was removed prior to 2009
The support posts for the marker are still visible at this roadside pullout
46° 36.712′ N, 90° 41.696′ W. Marker is near Odanah, Wisconsin, in Ashland County. Marker is at the intersection of U.S. 2 and Old Odanah Road, on the left when traveling west on U.S. 2. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Odanah WI 54861, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 12 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Fleet Admiral William D. Leahy (approx. 8 miles away); Schooner Lucerne (approx. 8.1 miles away); Doctor Edwin Ellis (approx. 8.6 miles away); Northland College (approx. 8.7 miles away); Washburn, The Monolith City (approx. 10.2 miles away); Bank of Washburn (approx. 10.2 miles away); Madeline Island (approx. 11.4 miles away); Early Vessels (approx. 12.1 miles away).
Additional comments.
1. Marker Removed
The Wisconsin Historical Society, in their Official List of Wisconsin's State Historic Markers dated September 16, 2013, states "Marker Removed - Language Obsolete" for The Bad River marker. Images from Google Street View indicate that the marker was removed some time prior to September 2008; the support posts for the marker still remain as of October 2015.
    — Submitted January 24, 2016, by Duane Hall of Abilene, Texas.

Categories. Native AmericansSettlements & Settlers
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on March 7, 2013, by Rich Eggleston of Fitchburg, Wisconsin. This page has been viewed 445 times since then and 44 times this year. Photos:   1. submitted on March 7, 2013, by Rich Eggleston of Fitchburg, Wisconsin.   2. submitted on May 31, 2016, by Duane Hall of Abilene, Texas. • Bernard Fisher was the editor who published this page.
Editor’s want-list for this marker. Wide shot of marker and its surroundings. • Can you help?
Paid Advertisement