Historical and Preservation Society of Pottawattamie County

County Seat Council Bluffs, Iowa

The Kanesville Speakers Series

     Everybody likes a good story, and it's hard to imagine a place with more of them than Council Bluffs.

     The Society has teamed with Preserve Council Bluffs to create what promises to be a highly informative as well as entertaining look at the area's past.

     The programs are planned to be one hour in length and will be held at the Council Bluffs library.

Thursday, January 23, 2020- The Journey of the Potawatomi

6:30 pm, Council Bluffs Public Library          


     The Pottawattamie County wouldn’t be Pottawattamie were it not for the Native Americans who arrived here 180 years ago.  The Potawatomi Indians had been living in Illinois, but moved west following the Treaty of Chicago. Billy Caldwell, also known as Chief Sauganash, led around 1500 Potawatomie to Council Bluffs in 1836.

     Thursday, January 23, at 6:30 p.m. Preserve Council Bluffs welcomes author Susan Kelsey to the Council Bluffs Public Library as a part of the Kanesville Speakers Series.  Her program will tell the tale of Caldwell’s trek and describe the ten years the tribe lived in the county that bears their name. The diplomatic and well-educated Caldwell was the son of a Potawatomi mother and a Scotch-Irish father who served in the British Army.  Caldwell’s fluency in English as well as the native language of the Potawatomi made him the logical choice of both sides to negotiate the Treaty of Chicago.  That agreement led to the tribe’s relocation to what’s now Council Bluffs, where they built southwest Iowa’s first saw and grist mill along the banks of Mosquito Creek.  

     This program is part of the Kanesville Speakers Series and is free to members of the Historical Society of Pottawattamie County.  Nonmembers are welcome to attend for a $5 admission fee.  To ensure sufficient seating guests are asked to make reservations in advance.  This can be done online (see below) or contat Patricia Murphy at 402-850-0822.


     Best value: become a Historical Society member and see all the programs at no additional charge. Click here to learn how!

Nonmembers- Buy tickets to the program online!

Admission is $5 per person. Historical Sciety members are free and need no advance ticket.