Indian Henry (So-To-Lick)

Indiana Henry Gravestone, photo by Stephen B. Emerson
Indian Henry Gravestone, photo by Stephen B. Emerson

Indian Henry (So-To-Lick, 1820-95) was a complex man, able to live in two worlds. While he was dedicated to indian customs he was also comfortable with the white man.

Some believe he was a Klickitat or Yakama from the village at Simco and that he arrived on the Mashell Prairie around 1864.

“Indian Henry’s village (the second one on the Mashell Prairie) was about five miles west of Eatonville, reached by the first road that turns left below the Triangle, of the Mountain Highway. The Indians owned about 600 acres of land, commonly referred to by people her as “the reservation” although it was not a reservation, but a land grant made to Henry by the government.”

“Henry was an intelligent man and made many friends among the white people, including the Ohop Valley pioneers, T.C. Van Eaton . . . and many others. ” History of Tacoma Eastern Area

Local legend has it that he showed T.C. Van Eaton the spot where Eatonville stands today.  Whether he did or not, he did have a lot of interaction with the Eatonville community.

The newspaper Independent published in Vancouver noted on January 3, 1884 that “Indian Henry raises a large quantity of produce which he brings out to market on the backs of his ponies. He raises wheat and oats and all kinds of vegetable; besides, he has a large band of horses and a large number of hogs.”

For more information on Indian Henry, clink on any of the following:
• October 2t, 2007 News Tribune Article by Rob Carson
Washington State history link on Indian Henry
• The book Firm Foundation, formation of Eatonville, WA

4 responses to “Indian Henry (So-To-Lick)”

  1. New research, and the discovery of Indian Henry’s descendants, confirms him of being Upper Cowlitz or Yakama (newly approved spelling) Cowlitz.


    • Thank you, Abbi Wonacott for the detail on “Indian Henry.” I wish more Native American descendants would post names & details about these important characters who sadly are not as well represented in history books, magazines, or websites.


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