GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — A Grand Rapids event Sunday commemorated the 200th anniversary of the signing of the Treaty of Chicago and unveiled a new historical marker.
The event started at 1 p.m. at Ah-Nab-Awen Park. It featured songs performed by Ninmkee Fox and the Grand River Bands of Ottawa Indians and a blessing of the waters of the Grand River.
The 1821 Treaty of Chicago was an agreement where the Ottawa, Potawatomi and Chippewa band Indians gave up their lands in what was then Michigan territory. It ultimately cleared the way for the settlement of the city of Grand Rapids.
It was a painful time in history, but Ron Yob with the Grand River Bands of Ottawa Indians says it’s important to commemorate the anniversary.
“We just want to let them know that we are still here, the resiliency of our people,” Yob said.
At the event Yob announced the dedication of the new historical marker now featured in the park. Several dozen members of the public were in attendance to witness the unveiling of the statue.