The term sagamore was the term used by Algonquian-speaking American Indian tribes of the northeastern United States for the tribal chiefs. The Wabash is the "State River" of Indiana and major tributary of the Ohio River. Each governor since Gates has presented the certificates in his own way. Until 2006, the award was the highest honor which the Governor of Indiana bestows, a personal tribute usually given to those who rendered distinguished service to the state or to the governor.
Among those who have received Sagamores have been astronauts, presidents, ambassadors, artists, musicians, politicians, and citizens who have contributed greatly to "Hoosier" heritage. The Sagamore award has been conferred upon both men and women. There is no official record of the total number presented, as each governor has kept his own roll; just as each has reserved the right to personally select the recipients. Some individuals have received the award more than once; for example, Indiana UniversitychancellorHerman B Wells was so honored six times.
Recipients of the Sagamore of the Wabash Award
The Sagamore of the Wabash Award does not have an official list of the number of Sagamore of the Wabash awards presented, but below is a partial list of notable recipients and the year they received the award:
2009: Donald C. "Danny" Danielson, New Castle business and civic leader
2010: Carl Erskine, former Brooklyn and Los Angeles Dodgers baseball player
2012: Ian M. Rolland, former chairman and CEO of Lincoln National Corp.
2013: Don Wolf, former President and CEO of Do-It Best Corporation based in Fort Wayne, IN 
Contents of the award
When a Sagamore of the Wabash is given to a recipient it is accompanied by other artifacts. It's uncertain if the contents of the award vary by year or by recipient. The gallery below shows the contents of a specific award given on January 9, 2005.