Marameg Indians (from Man-um-aiq, Chippewa for ‘catfish:’- Verwyst). Evidently a band or division of the Chippewa, which seems to have been, at the dawn of the history of the upper lake region, in the process of disintegration. The first notice of them is that given by Dablon in the Jesuit Relation of 1670, at which time they resided on Lake Superior, apparently along the east half of the north shore. They were then in close union with the Sauteurs, or Chippewa of Sault Ste Marie. Dablon, speaking of the Chippewa of the Sault, says: “These are united with three other nations, who are more than 550 persons, to whom they granted like rights of their native country. . These are the Noquets who are spread along the south side of Lake Superior, where they are the originals; and the Outchibous with the Marameg of the north side of the same lake, which they regard as their proper country.” Here the Chippewa of the north side of the lake are distinguished from those of Sault Ste Marie to the same extent as are the Marameg and Noquet. The Chippewa settlement at the Sault, where the fishing was excellent, seems to have drawn thither the other divisions, as this gave them strength and control of the food supply. The early notices of the Marameg and Noquet appear to indicate that these two tribes became absorbed by the Chippewa and their tribal or subtribal distinction lost, but there are reasons for believing that these two peoples were identical. Tailhan, in his notes on Perrot’s Mémoire, assumes without question that the two tribes were incorporated with the Chippewa of the Sault, who were distinguished by the name Pahouitigouchirini. The Marameg are mentioned under the name Malamechs in the Proces-verbal of the Prise de Possession in 1671 as present at the conference on that occasion. According to Shea they are mentioned in the MS. Jesuit Relation of 1672-73 as being near the Mascoutin, who were then on Fox River, Wisconsin.
If, as supposed, the people of this tribe are those referred to by La Chesnaye 1 under the name “Malanas ou gens de la Barbue,” they must have resided in 1697, in part at least, at Shaugawaumikong (the present Bayfield, Wisconsin), on the south shore of Lake Superior. The attempt to identify them with the “Miamis of Maramek” mentioned in a document of 1695 2 as residing on Maramec (Kalamazoo) river, in Michigan, is certainly erroneous.
For Further Study
The following articles and manuscripts will shed additional light on the Marameg as both an ethnological study, and as a people.
- La Chesnaye, Margry, vi, 6
- N. Y. Doc. Col. Hist., IX, 619