University of Wisconsin Digital Collections
Link to University of Wisconsin Digital Collections
Link to University of Wisconsin Digital Collections
The State of Wisconsin Collection

Page View

Salter, George H., 1826-ca. 1906 / Papers, ca. 1896-1913, 1965
Call Number, Stevens Point SC 60 ([unpublished])

Weathered Stone Marks Murder of Ex-Burlington Woman PDF (5.8 MB)


Weathered Stone Marks Murder of Ex-Burlington Woman by George C. Paulson
Most modern-day travelers on busy Highway 80 near its junction with Juneau
County Trunk Q about six miles north of New Lisbon speed by with-out noticing
a weathered con-crete marker, all that is left to remind them of a pioneer
tragedy that befell a former Burlington woman more than 110 years ago.
The marker tells of the murder of Mrs. Emma Salter by Indians and of the
revenge here husband took when he kill-ed Joe and Jim Dandy with the same
as handle they used to murder his wife.  The full text of the inscription
on the stone is as follows:
"Mrs. Salter killed here by Two Indians--June 13, 1863-- 2 Indians,
Jo and Jim Dandy, killed by Salter and burried here -- This ax handle killed
2 Indians and Mrs. Salter -- Duck-a-Gee."
An imprint of the weapon used in the three deaths was put in the marker by
Gus Nooney, a pioneer neighbor of the Saller family.  It is be-lieved that
Duck-a-Gee refers to the tribal name of the In-dians involved.
The story goes that Joe and Jim Dandy came to the Salte home while Mrs. Salter
was alone with a baby, James, whom she had put to sleep on two chairs facing
the kitch-en wall.  Salter and three other men were haying about three miles
away.  An older boy and girl were at school.  Early in the afternoon, a settler
who stopped at the Salter tavern to water his horse, told Mrs. Salter he
had seen Indians skulking about the place, but she told him she was not afraid.
"I just drove two away," she said, according to a report
of a Madison
newspaperman who interviewed James in 1931.  "They wanted whiskey,
but
George told me not to sell to Indians when he was away.  They got ugly, but
I drove them out."
Before the settler reached New Lisbon, a man on horse-back overtook him and
shouted, "The Indians have killed Mrs. Salter; I'm going for the
soldiers."
The newspaper reported the Indians had returned and be-come more insistent
in their demands for whiskey.  Signs of the following struggle in-dicated
Mrs. Salter had grab-bed an ax handle to defend herself, but the Indians
had taken it from her and used it on the woman.  Her skull was crushed and
her forearm broken in two places when she apparently tried to ward off blows.
 The Indians broke open a keg of whiskey, looted the tavern and fled.
One, Joe Dandy, was left behind in a drunken stupor.  He was killed by Salter
on the spot, and the pioneer and his friends posted watch over his body.
 The next day, they saw an Indian dodge behind a bush.  He was Jim Dandy,
a brother of the slain man.  He was captured and brought back to face Salter
who promised him his freedom if he would tell who killed Mrs. Salter.  Instead,
he broke free and was killed by Salter.
Later, a neighbor named Miller from down the road, cut off the heads of the
two Indians and set them on galeposts.  Their bodies were buried in the road
outside the tavern.  Salter launched a cam-paign against the rest of the
clan he blamed for his wife's death, and the Indians warred on him.  Salter
stayed at the tavern for a few years after the tragedy, and more than once
it was fired on in the night.
Salter carried on the war for several years, tracking down Indians with "Old
Black Hawk," his muzzle loader.  Two were killed near Mather at
the
western edge of Juneau County, and one was located by Salter near Menomonie.
 The avenger filed a notch in his gun for every Indian that fell.  Some said
Salter killed upwards of 50 Indians, others
Here is the way George "Daddy" Salter and his wife, Elizabeth
Caucutt
Salter, looked in a picture taken at New Lisbon in the late 1880's.  Elizabeth
was born in Burlington on Feb. 19, 1846.  She died in January, 1897.
Viewing a concrete marker of a pioneer tragedy are two young travelers. 
They are among the few who note the weathered reminder of the murder of Emma
Caucutt Salter and the revenge her husband took on Joe and Jim Dandy more
than 110 years ago.  The stone stands just a few feet from the edge of Highway
80 south of its junction with Juneau County Trunk Q about six miles north
of New Lisbon.  The tragedy caused an Indian scare among central Wisconsin
residents for several months because it happened scarcely a year after a
massacre a New Ulm, Minn.  Though plans have been voiced to move the marker
back from the highway and protect it with an iron fence, it stands exposed,
but often unnoticed by those who pass on the busy highway.  The imprint of
an axe helve used to kill three people still is visible, but time and the
elements have worn away part of the inscription.
(Continued on Page 8)
Burlington paper, 1912

Go up to Top of Page