CHICAGO, Feb. 9 (UPI) -- Descendants of an Indian chief who became a prominent Chicago citizen say they were cheated out of land granted to him by President John Tyler.
Some of the disputed land is in Cook County Forest Preserve and some has been developed, the Chicago Sun-Times reported Tuesday.The descendants of Alexander Robinson hope to get the land back, or some of it, so they can build a casino. A court fight appears to be looming, the newspaper said.
"We want to take care of future generations. We feel that's why Robinson
had his children and heirs forever written into the paperwork. The man wasn't a dummy," Buzz Spreeman of Norridge, one of many in the family, said. "He was a wheeler and dealer. He was thinking business."
Robinson, son of Scottish trader and an Ottawa woman, helped rescue settlers from the Fort Dearborn massacre in 1812 on the site of what is now Chicago. He settled in the new community, opening the first Chicago tavern.
Tyler granted Robinson 2 square miles of land in 1843 because of his help negotiating treaties with Indian tribes and convincing them to give up territory without fighting for it.
Robinson is buried in what is now the forest preserve and his descendants continued to live in his house until a 1952 fire.