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While thus in custody Father Hennepin observed their customs, made some study of the language, baptized a child and attempted some religious instruction, explored a part of Minnesota, and discovered and named St. In 1683 Nicholas Perrot established a post at the mouth of the Wisconsin.
In 1689 he established Fort Perrot near the lower end of Lake Pepin, on the Minnesota side, the first post within the Sioux territory, and took formal possession of their country for France.
The Jesuit Father Joseph Marest, officially designated "Missionary to the Nadouesioux", was one of the witnesses at the ceremony and was again with the tribe some twelve years later.
Another post was built by Pierre Le Sueur, near the present Red Wing about 1693, and in 1695 a principal chief of the tribe accompanied him to Montreal to meet the governor, Frontenac.
At that time the Sioux were giving shelter to a band of refugee Hurons fleeing before the Iroquois.
They were rated as possessing thirty villages, and were the terror of all the surrounding tribes by reason of their number and prowess, although admittedly less cruel.
They call themselves Dakota, Nakota, or Lakota, according to dialect, meaning "allies".The Sioux language is spoken in three principal dialects, viz.Santee (pronounced Sahntee ), or eastern; Yankton, or middle; and Teton, or western, differing chiefly in the interchange of d , n , and l , as indicated in the various forms of the tribal name.Fathers Allouez and Marquette, from their mission of St.
Esprit, established at Lapointe (now Bayfield, Wis.) on Lake Superior in 1665, entered into friendly relations with the Sioux, which continued until 1671, when the latter, provoked by insults from the eastern tribes, returned Marquette's presents, declared war against their hereditary foes, and compelled the abandonment of the mission. Marie to arrange peace through the good offices of the resident Jesuit missionary, Father Gabriel Druillettes, who already had several of the tribe under instruction in his house, but the negotiations were brought to an abrupt end by a treacherous attack made upon the Sioux while seated in council in the mission church, resulting in the massacre of the ambassadors after a desperate encounter, and the burning of the church, which was fired over their heads by the Ojibwa to dislodge them.
Other cognate tribes are the Assiniboin, Crow, Hidatsa, or Minitarí, Mandan, Winnebago, Iowa, Omaha, Ponca, Oto, Missouri, Kaw, Osage, and Quapaw, all excepting the Winnebago living west of the Mississippi; together with a number of tribes formerly occupying territories in Mississippi and the central regions of the Carolinas and Virginia, all now virtually extinct, excepting a handful of Catawba in South Carolina.