Jean Baptiste Point du Sable was the 1st settler of Chicago. He was also the city's 1st black resident.
As a free black man, Point du Sable is believed to have been born most likely in Haiti sometime before 1750. From 1768 or so, Point du Sable operated as an engagé, a fur trader with an official license from the British government. In the early years of the United States, Point du Sable was managing a trading post in Indiana. The area was officially Indian-owned (he was a tenant) and Point du Sable was harassed by both British and American troops who passed through the Midwest. By 1788 he had established a farm in Chicago and lived there with his wife, Catherine, a son and a daughter. In the years that the family lived there, they provided some stability to an area that was primarily frequented by peripatetic traders. With the end of the Revolutionary War, Point du Sable's farm prospered. People as far away as the East coast knew Point du Sable as the only source of farmed produce in the area.