Chief Pontiac

Chief Pontiac is one of the famous American Indians. There is very little reliable information that tells about the early years of Chief Pontiac. Even the later years and the war that bares his name and made him famous is in debate by some scholars. He was supposedly born in the year 1720 and is known to have died on April 20th 1769. And he was known to have been a leader in his Ottawa tribe.

The event that made Chief Pontiac famous would be the part he took in Pontiac’s Rebellion, which took place between 1763 and 1766. Pontiacs Rebellion was a conflict between the American Indians and the British military occupation of the great lakes region after the French and Indian war had concluded. Chief Pontiac initially visited the fort with a small regiment of warriors in order to scout the fort and see what they were up against. In May of 1763 Chief Pontiac and three hundred warriors attempted to take Fort Detroit by surprise but the attempt was futile, unable to take the fort Chief Pontiac lay siege to the fort and was in time joined by nine hundred warriors from at least half a dozen other tribes. While the fighting was underway Chief Pontiac sent forth messengers to carry the message of the uprising to fellow tribes near and far. His siege and warriors were able to take out a detachment of British soldiers but was never able to take the fort.

In October of the same year he lifted the siege and withdrew from the country, it is believed that his support dwindled a little due to the loss. The war is said to have continued for several more years until Chief Pontiac eventually met with the British and made peace. Historians believe he had less power amongst his tribe then many believed and less then what Chief Pontiac claimed of himself, yet they agree that his attack on Fort Detroit was the spark that helped start the Indian uprising against the British. In 1769 an Indian of the Peoria tribe assassinated Chief Pontiac.

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