Born around 1810, Wa-che-ke (also Watchekee, Waatchki) for whom the city of Watseka in Iroquois County is named, was the niece of Potawatomi chief Tamin. Described as intelligent and beautiful, Wa-che-ke played an instrumental role in the settlement of Iroquois and Kankakee counties, especially Bourbonnais Grove.
At the time, marriage between the French fur traders and Potawatomi women was seen as advantageous to both groups. Intermarriage was common and one can find many mixed-blood individuals in this area's history: Francois Bourbonnais, Bill Caldwell, Catherine Chevalier, and others.
In 1824 young Wa-che-ke, only fourteen or fifteen years old, married Gurdon Hubbard, strengthening the relationship between the American Fur Company and the Kankakee Potawatomi. By "mutual agreement" they divorced in 1826. Not coincidentally, soon after Noel LeVasseur took over operations at the Bunkum trading post, he married Wa-che-ke. Together they had a daughter.
Wa-che-ke moved with LeVasseur to La Pointe in 1832 and lived there until LeVasseur divorced her in 1837. The divorce coincided with the U.S. government's removal of the Potawatomi from the area. Wa-che-ke left the area for Council Bluffs, Iowa in 1838. She married Francis Bergeron in 1840.
Wa-che-ke in later life, known at that time as Josette Bergeron.
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