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CARDINAL, Jean Marie

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CARDINAL, Jean Marie. (Unknown-St. Louis, MO, May, 1780). The fourth white person to mine LEAD at the present site of Dubuque and the only Iowan to die in the American Revolution. A fugitive from justice, Cardinal and his partner in 1763 had killed Abraham Lansing and his son, fur dealers in Wisconsin. Fleeing westward, Cardinal began MINING lead in an area previously controlled by a Mr. Longe. Cardinal was one of the miners who escaped capture by troops led by Emmanuel Hesse who attacked the Dubuque-area mines as part of an English strategy to capture supply points along the MISSISSIPPI RIVER.

In 1780 a British force under the leadership of Lt. Alexander Kay moved down the Mississippi River from a fort at Prairie du Chien. In a daring escape from Dubuque by canoe down the Mississippi River, Cardinal warned the Spanish and French in St. Louis of an attack on their city by the English and their Native American allies. Cardinal's early warning allowed the inhabitants to properly prepare. Twenty-nine regular troops and 281 villagers repelled the attack of an estimated 1,500 enemy troops.

Cardinal was captured during the battle at St. Louis and died of wounds inflicted while trying to escape.



"Jean Cardinal Was the First Iowa Patriot," Telegraph Herald, August 14, 1938, p. 29. Online: http://news.google.com/newspapers?id=tttBAAAAIBAJ&sjid=3akMAAAAIBAJ&pg=3881,5481097&dq=lock+and+dam+dubuque&hl=en