Exploration, information, and connection with the Black Hawk War of 1832.
The Black Hawk War ushered in a young Abraham Lincoln's first successful election in 1832 to the post of Captain in charge of his Illinois Militia unit. The conflict brought Black Hawk and future Confederate President Jefferson Davis face to face, as a young Davis escorted the imprisoned Black Hawk during his captivity at Rock Island. For one brief mustering, volunteer and enlisted army matched the population of any city in the Northwest Territories (in 1830 Chicago's population is estimated at 100 souls, in 1840 it had grown to 4,470).
If someone was anxious to cross off items to do on their bucket list, it would be technically possible to travel the entire Black Hawk Trail in one intensive daylong drive. By beginning at Rock Island, Illinois and driving through Stillman, Illinois, across Wisconsin from Fort Atkinson, coursing through Wisconsin Heights and up to Victory and the final battle of Bad Axe, a road trip can be completed in about ten hours. However, that trip would provide you with just a cursory windshield view of ubiquitous interstate scenes followed by rolling hills anxious to share their story.
This travel guide will provide you with accessible day trips to explore, experience, and discover your own interpretation of the Black Hawk War.
Rock river was a beautiful country - I liked my towns, my cornfields, and the home of my people. I fought for it. From the autobiography of Ma-ka-tai-me-she-kia-kiak, or Black Hawk
By the way Mr. Speaker, did you know that I am a military hero? Yes sir, in the days of the Black Hawk War I fought. I had a good many bloody struggles with the mosquitoes, and although I never fainted from the loss of blood, I can truly say I was often very hungry. - Abraham Lincoln, 1848.