The Legend Of Camp Chief Little Turtle…
…..Long ago, when Chief Little Turtle was a young man, he discovered white men clearing the land and building log homes along the Pigeon River. Concerned, he spoke with the tribe’s Medicine man who told him to fast and cleanse his body. After several days, the Great Spirit appeared to Little Turtle in the form of a Great Blue Herron.
The Heron told him to craft a bow and four arrows, each with a different color arrowhead. One was to be white, one yellow, one black, and one red. From the highest hill, he was to shoot the arrow in the four directions of the wind…north, south, east and west. That land would one day return to the state it was during the time of the Indians.
In 1965, the Anthony Wayne Area Council of the Boy Scouts of America was seeking a location for a new camp. Hearing of a property north of Fort Wayne, the council leaders visited the location and hiked the property extensively. To their amazement, they found one black arrowhead on the east edge of the property. Taking this as a good sign, the council leaders purchased the property. As construction began, a single yellow arrow head was found to the south, near the camp entrance. Shortly after this discovery, another single white arrowhead was discovered nestled in the roots of a tree far to the north. The fourth red arrowhead is believed to be in Wilderness area of camp on the far west side.
While the fourth arrowhead has never been found, our quest continues. It has come to symbolize reaching for lofty goals, gaining new knowledge and working together with our friends and fellow Scouts. All of this is done while having fun and testing our Scouting skills. To this day, the camp uses a Blue Heron and a three point compass as it’s totem – to remind everyone that sees it – that the search continues…….
Chief Little Turtle, Miami War Chief
Camp Chief Little Turtle is named in honor of the great Miami Indian War Chief, Little Turtle whose native name is Mishikinakwa. He was a talented warrior, leader, and diplomat of the Miami Nation in Indiana. He lived from 1747 until his death on July 14, 1812. He was one of the most successful Natïve American military commanders of all time defending his native lands. His forces defeated both French and American military expeditions including those led by La Balme, General Josiah Harmar, and General Arthur St. Clair. The defeat of General St. Clair’s forces and the loss of over 600 Americans killed was the worst military loss to Native Americans the American army would ever see. His forces were finally defeated by General Anthony Wayne at the Battle of Fallen Timbers, which led to the signing of the Treaty of Greenville. Chief Little Turtle was also a diplomat and peacemaker working to maintain the sovereignty of his people by cooperating with the United States. He met with Presidents George Washington, John Adams and Thomas Jefferson. Chief Little Turtle was a great leader of his people.