Posted by: Web-ling
N 40° 07.022 W 083° 06.631
17T E 320147 N 4442881
Quick Description: Leatherlips (1732-1810) was an American Indian leader of the late 18th and early 19th century.
Location: Ohio, United States
Date Posted: 11/9/2006 3:13:22 PM
Waymark Code: WMY5T
Hurons, more accurately known as Wendat, or Wyandot, were decimated by disease and a disastrous war with the Five Nations of the Iroquois. Forced out of their homeland near Lake Superior, they moved to the Iroquois hunting ground of Ohio. Leatherlips, an important leader, signed the Treaty of Greenville and encouraged cooperation with white settlers near the end of his life. That policy of accommodating Europeans led to conflict with the Shawnee Indians.
The Shawnee, led by Tecumseh and Tenskwatawa (The Prophet), had previously recognized the Wyandot as rightful rulers of the land. Now, however, they reacted strongly against Leatherlips and condemned him to death for witchcraft.
Six Wyandots traveled to what is now Dublin, Ohio just north of Columbus and announced the death sentence. Although white settlers led by Benjamin Sells pleaded for the old chief and attempted to bribe the death squad, the trial and sentencing were swift.
After clothing himself in his finest attire, Leatherlips, joined by his executioners, sang the death chant and prayed. Then he was killed by tomahawk.
According to the book "This is Ohio" by Grace Goulder, the execution took place at the entrance to the caves that are now known as the Olentangy Indian Caverns, located north of Dublin, Ohio and south of Delaware, Ohio. According to information from the Olentangy Indian Caverns, the caverns were used by the Wyandot people up until 1810 (the year of Leatherlips' death and also the first recorded incident of a European traveler entering the caves) as a shelter from the weather and a place to seclude themselves from another nearby tribe, the Delaware people.
This sculpture of Leatherlips and a memorial art sculpture are tourist stops in Dublin, Ohio today.