Chief Hopocan

Chief Hopocan

A statue of Chief Hopocan is located at Barberton’s oldest park, New Portage Park, in north Barberton at the intersections of Norton Avenue and Wooster Road north. In 1911, Mayor Mitchell and a group of Barberton citizens raised the necessary funds to erect a statue of Chief Hopocan to commemorate the early citizens of New Portage, now the North end of Barberton.

Over its 90 year life, the statue had become very weathered. On September 30, 2001, Mayor Hart and the City of Barberton were able to rededicate the statue which had been restored due to the efforts of the Barberton Noon Kiwanis Club. The rededication was held exactly 90 years and one day after the statue was originally dedicated in 1911. The Kiwanis raised nearly $9,000 to complete this important restoration project.

The Barberton Historical Society had been involved with Akron University student Pete Neugebauer in the duplication of an exact replica of the original pedestal, as well as the text for the statue’s plaques. The Society also had retired librarian Phyllis Taylor to thank for her help in this worthwhile effort.

SOURCE: Barberton Historical Society

Chief Hopocan Does Not Stand Alone

Chief Hopocan 1911

Barberton’s Chief Hopocan does not stand alone. There are several other early circa “Indian” statues that were erected across America and Peru according to a Fargo, ND website (http://www.fargo-history.com/downtown/indian.htm). It reads, in part…The statue of Lawrence the Indian was originally a carving done by wood carver Samuel Anderson Robb about 1860 for William Demuth who was the leading cigar store Indian peddler. Demuth published a catalog of his wares; and in 1872, “Lawrence” is listed as “No. 53 Indian Chief.” In 1873, the J.L. Mott Iron Works purchased the design and listed him for $500 in their catalog of statuary. The Schenectady statue was purchased in 1887. There are others like him still extant in Tilton, New Hampshire; Barberton, Ohio; and Cusco, Peru. [There are also references to an “Indian” statue in Chattanooga, TN and Mt. Kisco, NY.]

The following is the link to the Cincinnati “Indian” statue locally called "Tecumseh" [dedicated on January 15, 1912] http://queencitysurvey.blogspot.com/2008/02/queens-crown-jewels.html. This website also provides some history about J.L. Mott Iron Works [of NY]. The website Cincinnati-oh.gov/cityparks provided even more information, to-wit: “Cincinnati’s J. Fitzhugh Thornton Memorial: In 1912, the J.L. Mott Iron Works of New York designed and produced this sculpture of an eastern Woodlands Indian. This sculpture acquired the name “Tecumseh” from the Shawnee intertribal leader who led the resistance against white expansion into the Ohio region. Its zinc composition and cast-iron pedestal make this work a unique piece in the city. Only eight others like it have survived in the United States. A gift from Eliza Thornton in memory of her husband J. Fitzhugh Thornton, this quaint statue in Thornton Triangle, (Saylor Park, Cincinnati’s smallest park), has seen much misfortune over the years. It was partially submerged in the great flood of 1937. Three years later, after being struck by a car, the city sold the sculpture for $10 to an antique dealer in Indiana. Outraged Sayler Park residents vowed to find and return the Indian to its pedestal. After several months, the sculpture was located and returned to Thornton Triangle.”

Chief Hopocan (tobacco pipe)

Konieschquanoheel (maker of day)

[variations found in spelling Konieschquanoheel/Konieschquanokee/Konieschguanokee/Komeschguanokee.]

and Captain Pipe

ARTICLE 1  SOURCE: http://www.ohiohistorycentral.org/

Captain Pipe was a leader of the Delaware Indians during and after the American Revolution. Little is known of his early years. His American Indian name was Konieschquanoheel, meaning “maker of light.” His nickname among the Delaware was Hopocan, which translates to “tobacco pipe.” By the time of the American Revolution, he had become a leader among his people. During the conflict, he first tried to remain neutral to both the English and the Americans. He refused to take up arms against the Americans even after General Edward Hand killed his mother, brother, and a few of his children during a military campaign in 1778. The Delawares that Hand attacked were neutral, but he sought to protect American settlers in the Ohio Country from Indian attack and sometimes killed innocent natives. Later that same year, General Lachlan McIntosh, the American commander at Fort Pitt, requested permission from the Delaware Indians to march through their territory to attack Fort Detroit. Captain Pipe and other Delaware chiefs agreed, as long as the soldiers would build a fort to protect the Delaware from both the British and white settlers. McIntosh agreed and had Fort Laurens built near the Delaware villages in eastern Ohio. After constructing the fort, McIntosh demanded that the Ohio Country natives assist the Americans in capturing Fort Detroit. If the Indians refused, McIntosh threatened them with extermination.

Realizing how weak McIntosh’s force was and believing that the Americans could not protect them from the British and their native allies, Captain Pipe and many other Delaware Indians began to form a friendlier relationship with the English. The Americans pushed Captain Pipe solidly into England’s embrace in 1781, when Colonel Daniel Brodhead attacked and destroyed Coshocton, a Delaware Indian village. Captain Pipe spent the remainder of the war trying to thwart American expansion into the Ohio Country. In 1782, he participated in William Crawford’s defeat. Seeking vengeance for the Gnadenhutten Massacre, Captain Pipe was probably the one who marked Crawford for death by painting his face black. He also threatened to kill Simon Girty if he tried to intercede on Crawford’s behalf while the natives first tortured and then executed him. Following the Revolution, Captain Pipe continued to resist white settlement of the Ohio Country (known as the Northwest Territory at this point). By the 1810s and 1820s, Captain Pipe realized his people had little chance against the Americans and began to negotiate treaties. The whites quickly violated these agreements, moving onto land set aside for the Delaware People.

The exact date of the death of Captain Pipe has not been determined. Some writers have argued that he died as early as 1794. Others believe that he lived until 1812-1814 when his role was assumed by his son who was also called Captain Pipe.

ARTICLE 2  SOURCE: One State Many Nations ~ Native Americans of Ohio

[Native name: Hopocan (Tobacco Pipe) or Konieschquanokee (Maker of Day); White Name: Captain Pipe; Nation: Delaware] Some say Hopocan, or Captain Pipe, was born about 1725; others put his birth at 1740. A member of the Munsee or Wolf Clan of the Delaware people, he became Chief of that clan. He was probably born near the Susquehanna River in Pennsylvania. Most of the Pennsylvania Delaware had moved to Ohio by 1758. He is first mentioned historically in 1759 at Ft. Pitt. When Fredrick Christian Post was given permission by the Delaware to build a cabin on the Tuscarawas River at present Bolivar, Ohio, Pipe was given the job of marking out the land he was to receive.

As one of the three clan chiefs of the Delaware Nation, Pipe had a lot of responsibilities. One of them was to work with the other chiefs to keep the people safe. He had to be a warrior, a negotiator and a good listener to his people. Captain Pipe fought in the French and Indian War and in Pontiac’s War where in 1764 Pipe was captured and held prisoner at Fort Pitt. Col. Henry Bouquet dictated peace terms to the Delaware instead of negotiating with them. Pipe found this very distasteful and it set his opinion of the Shawanock, or Long Knives, for the rest of his life.

In 1778 General Edward Hand of the American Colonial forces killed Captain Pipe’s mother, brother and some of his children. Even so he was with Captain White Eyes and Killbuck in 1778 when they signed the first-ever treaty with the Continental Congress and Native people. The Ohio country was to be the Fourteenth State and only for Native people. The Delaware people became divided over which side of the American Revolution they should support. Captain Pipe became the leader of those who supported the British and moved his people to the Sandusky River.

In 1782 Captain Pipe and his people captured Col. Crawford who was held responsible for the murders of Chief Logan’s family. Col. Crawford and his men were executed in the same fashion as Logan’s family. He participated in many battles and led his people in what he believed was right.

Some believe he died in 1794, but proof exists that he was at the Battle of Fallen Timbers, but not at the Greenville Treaty signing. In 1795 a French trader named Jerome built a cabin at what is present Jeromesville in Ashland County, Ohio, on the Jerome Fork of the Mohican River. In 1808-09 early white settlers to the area found Delaware people living at the old Mohican village of Johnstown across the river from Jerome near which was located the home of Old Captain Pipe. Many stories of the settlers and the remaining Delaware talk of Old Captain Pipe living there until 1812. In the spring of 1812 Old Captain Pipe and his people quietly disappear and were never again seen near Jeromesville.

Captain Pipe had a son also named Captain Pipe who signed many treaties and moved with the Delaware people to Kansas. He had no children.

ARTICLE 3  SOURCE: American Indians. Edited by Harvey Makowitz. Pasadena, CA/Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Salem Press Inc., 1995.

Captain Pipe, a Delaware chief, was born about 1725 in the Pennsylvania area. His American Indian name was Hopocan or Konieschquanokee. Hopocan fought the Americans during the French and Indian War, Pontiac’s War, and the American Revolution, and he allied with the French during the French and Indian War. In 1763, during Pontiac’s Rebellion, he was captured at Fort Pitt. After the cessation of hostilities, he settled on the Muskingum River in Ohio.

During the American Revolution, Hopocan led several raids on American settlers. In 1782, he and Buckongehelas defeated U.S. troops at Sandusky, Ohio. Of the prisoners taken, one was Colonel William Crawford, who was accused of killing peaceful Moravian Delawares in Gnadenhutten, Pennsylvania. In retaliation for this act, Hopocan had him tortured and executed. This murder escalated hostilities on the western frontier.

Hopocan participated as orator and diplomat at several councils, signing treaties at Fort Pitt in 1778, Fort McIntosh, Ohio, in 1785, and at Fort Harmar in 1778. After relocating several times, Hopocan and his band settled on the upper Sandusky River in Ohio, at what became known as Captain Pipe’s village. He died there in 1794.

For more information, click on the following Wikepedia link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Captain_Pipe.

Chief Hopocan
At the Winchester Mystery House, San Jose 

You too can find Indians!  In February 2009, Mike Conlon met up with Elaine (Backus) and Tom Higgins to tour the Winchester Mystery House in San Jose, CA.  To their surprise, they discovered yet another Indian in the gardens of the estate.  If you are ever in the San Francisco area, be sure and tour this historic mansion...FUN!  Information can be found at: http://www.winchestermysteryhouse.com/.