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Jean Baptiste Point du Sable

Jean-Baptiste Point du Sable (1745-1813) was the first non-native settler in the area which is now Chicago, Illinois. He was long ignored by historians, partly because he was a Haitian and not white, and partly because the early histories were written by the friends and descendants of John Kinzie, to whom du Sable sold his house in 1800.

Du Sable built his first house in the 1770s, thirty years before Fort Dearborn was established on the banks of the Chicago River. By the time he sold to Kinzie's frontman, Jean LeLime, his property included a house, two barns, a horsemill, a bakehouse, a poultry house, a dairy and a smokehouse. The interior was richly appointed as well.

Du Sable married the daughter of one of the local Potawatomi chiefs. During the Revolutionary War, he was imprisoned briefly by the British at Detroit, Michigan.