Pierre Menard

1766 - June 13, 1844

Menard, Pierre, pioneer (1766-June 13, 1844). Born in Quebec, he reached Vincennes, Indiana, about 1780, then moved to Kaskaskia, Illinois, becoming a major Indian and fur trader in partnership with Francois Valle. By a second marriage he became brother-in-law to Pierre Chouteau Jr., and soon formed a business arrangement with Manuel Lisa. He was one of the many partners in the St. Louis Missouri Fur company, making his first wilderness trip up the Missouri in the spring of 1809 and wintering at Fort Raymond, at the mouth of the Big Horn, trapping in the spring with Andrew Henry on the Three Forks of the Missouri. Blackfeet hostility hampered them, and Menard returned to St. Louis. He never went up the river again. Menard became first lieutenant governor of Illinois, was sub Indian agent in 1813, and maintained an interest in Indian welfare all of his life. He named Keokuk, Iowa, after a Sauk chief, and occasionally was called upon to mediate Indian matters. He was a prominent and worthy pioneer.