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MICHIGAN CHAPTER 16

Influx of Settlers

The settlement was then known as Dismond, or more commonly Ia Riviere Delude, the name then given to Black river. It was twenty years later and after American occupation that Fort Gratiot was established. A promising and profitable employment for the early settlers along the St. Clair was the cutting of timber which was made up into rafts and floated down the river and lake to Detroit and Maiden. This gave occupation at seasons of the year when farming could not be carried on, and furnished ready money to the pioneers. Thus early began lumbering operations which in later years gave Michigan a wide reputation and proved a mine of wealth' to many. Hog Island, now known as Belle Isle, was granted in 1768 by General Gage and Captain Trumbull, commandant at Detroit, to Lieutenant George McDougall of the Sixtieth regiment, upon the condition that he procure from the Indians a proper indenture. This latter document was secured signed by the several chiefs with their totems. Thereupon the citizens sent to Governor Carleton a vigorous protest, in which they set forth that this island was from the first a common, ceded as such to the public by Cadillac, the first commandant of the country, to keep the cattle in safety. The protest proceeds to state that when De Tonty became commandant he undertook to appropriate the island but was forced to relinquish his assumptions. The same thing happened to Mr. De Quindre when he, under the orders of de Celoron, also claimed the ownership. The petitioners say that it is a hardship to see themselves stripped of their ancient rights and privileges in favor of a stranger lately come into the country.

MICHIGAN


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