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Pickawillany was a Miami Indian village located on the Great Miami River in North America's Ohio Valley In 1749 a British-oriented fortified trading post was established alongside the Miami village, selling goods to neighbouring tribes. The traders' success threatened what had previously been a French monopoly over local commerce, and in 1752 the village and trading post were destroyed in a combined French-American Indian assault.

Pickawillany's destruction directly encouraged greater British fortification and military presence at other outposts in the Ohio Valley, and has been seen as a precursor to the wider British-French conflict that would become the Seven Years' War.


The date of initial Miami Indian settlement at Pickawillany is not recorded. In 1748 George Croghan, an Irish trader affiliated with The Thirteen Colonies, established a trading post alongside the village, with the approval of La Demoiselle (Memeskia), the Miami chief. Croghan subsequently developed an active trade with French-Canadian fur traders. It was destroyed by the French and their Native American allies under Charles de Langlade in June 1752. Memeskia was a war chief of Ottawa-French descent and was fluent in both languages.

(Langlade also took part in Braddock's Defeat three years later during the Seven Years' War.) The remains of Pickawillany may have been the site of a 1763 battle during the war described by Black Hoof, in which Miami and Wyandot fortified themselves against Delaware and Shawnee warriors, who gave up the siege after seven days.

Chief Little Turtle (Michikinikwa), at Greeneville, reportedly said, "You discovered on the Great Miami traces of an old fort. It was not a French fort, brother, it was a fort built by me." Historians believe this is an error in translation, and that he said "a fort built by Mishikinakwa (The Turtle)," the name of an early Miami leader known to be at Pickawillany.

The Miami abandoned the village, relocating nearby. The present-day city of Piqua, Ohio in the United States was later developed around the second location by settlers moving west during the American Revolutionary War.


  • Carter, Harvey Lewis. The Life and Times of Little Turtle. ISBN 0-252-01318-2.
  • White, Richard. The Middle Ground: Indians, Empires, and Republics in the Great Lakes Region, 1650-1815, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1991, reprinted 2011.

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