Schoolcraft's Ozark Journey

Widow Lafferty's Cabin

Ozarks explorer Henry Schoolcraft and companion Levi Pettibone camped at or near this location on the return leg of their three-month exploration of the Ozarks. They spent the night at the cabin of the “Widow Lafferty” before continuing their journey by canoe on to Batesville the following day. The story of their adventure is contained in Dr. Milton Rafferty’s book Rude Pursuits and Rugged Peaks.

Sunday, January 17th, 1819

On descending five miles, we stopped at a Mr. Williams's to prepare breakfast. Here some hunters were gathering to hear an itinerant preacher. Thirty miles below, we stopped for the night at widow Lafferty's, on the right bank of the river. Some excitement prevails among the people occupying the right bank of White River, on account of the recent treaty concluded with the Cherokee Indians. By it those Indians relinquish certain tracts of land in the state of Tennessee, but are to receive in exchange the lands lying between the north bank of the Arkansaw, and the south bank of White River. Those people, therefore, who have located themselves upon the right bank of the river, and improved farms, are now necessitated to relinquish them, which is considered apiece of injustice.

-Henry Schoolcraft

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Funding for the Schoolcraft Journey project on Unlock the Ozarks has been provided by the Missouri Humanities Council.