Friday, November 16, 2012

2012 Dakota Commemorative March

"Manipi Hena Owasin Wicunkiksuyapi"
We Remember All Those Who Walked
2012 Dakota Commemorative March crossing the Mendota Bridge during the final mile to Fort Snelling. 
The photo shows the Dakota sacred land called Bdote (near the confluence of the Minnesota and Mississippi Rivers) which became the site where 1700 noncombatant women, children and elders were held for the 1862-1863 winter; The granite walls of Fort Snelling and the Minneapolis create the distant skyline.

Dakota Elders lead the ceremonial procession from the Mendota  bridge to the walls of Historic Fort Snelling, currently operated by the Minnesota Historical Center.

Passing by Fort Snelling on the left, the marchers descend the hill, entering Bdote -- the Dakota "Garden of Eden" – a location now called Fort Snelling State Park.    Hundreds of Dakota would be buried in unmarked graves inside and around the Concentration Camp stockade during the 1862-63 winter.  Those who survived the winter were boarded on paddle boats like cattle in May 1863; other Dakota were hunted like animals after government awarded $200 bounties were offered.  Following the directive of the US Congressional Indian Removal Act of 1863, the remaining "Sioux" became officially exiled from Minnesota. During this 150th anniversary year, many Dakota people are asking advocates to help encourage Congress to amend the Indian Removal Act.

For those who wish to learn more about this event, or donate to assist with expenses of this event, the upcoming 2012 Dakota 38+2 Memorial Ride or Mankato Run please visit  OR
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Press links

Photos  are provided courtesy of Bloomington Rotary Daymakers.  Permission is granted with the blessing of Dakota Elders for you to share these photos and to reprint them for honorable, non-commercial publications.

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