On this day in 1680, Daniel Greysolon Sieur du Lhut, two of his fellow countrymen from France, and a native interpreter overtook 1,100 Sioux who had supposedly captured French Jesuit priest Louis Hennepin, claiming to have canoed over 200 miles in two days in their pursuit. Their goal was to free the missionary. The trouble was, Hennepin and his party didn’t consider themselves captive but, rather, as guests of the “Sioux” (Dacotah). According to du Lhut biographer Milan Kovacovic, Hennepin and his men were “never subjected to confinement and…received excellent treatment in the hands of the Dakotas…[and seemed reluctant to leave their alleged tormentors.” Many of du Lhut’s contemporaries consider his account of the event as lacking credibility. La Salle , another French explorer out to make a name for himself, used the story to “denigrate Duluth’s reputation and portray him as an adventurer with no scruples.” According to Kovacovic, “jealousy and petty rivalries were surprisingly commonplace among the French explorers.” A biography of du Lhut can be found here. By the way, Milan Kovacovic is reading from his memoir tomorrow, Thursday, July 26 at 7:30 p.m. at Duluth’s Teatro Zuccone.