This year is the 150th anniversary of the U.S.–Dakota War of 1862. If you want to understand more about this important and difficult part of Minnesota’s history, a terrific place to start is the series of six lectures sponsored by Gustavus Adolphus College in St. Peter and being made available for remote viewers.
The lectures are part of “Commemorating Controversy: The U.S.–Dakota War of 1862,” an interim class being taught by Elizabeth Baer, professor of English at Gustavus, and Ben Leonard, executive director of the Nicollet County Historical Society. Speakers include:
- Wednesday, Jan. 4: Dr. John Peacock, “War of Words: Writings by Dakota People in Their Own Language and Later in English During and After the U.S.-Dakota War of 1862”
- Thursday, Jan. 5: Glenn Wasicuna, “A Dakota Way of Life”
- Tuesday, Jan. 10: Dr. Gary Clayton Anderson, “The Dakota War Trials: Travesty of Justice or Reasonable Retribution?”
- Tuesday, Jan. 17: Thomas Maltman, “Based on a True Story: Researching a Controversial History to Create Fiction”
- Tuesday, Jan. 24: Corinne Monjeau-Marz, “Aftermath of the 1862 War: Reviewing the Years from 1862 to 1866”
- Thursday, Jan. 26: Dr. Gwen Westerman, “We Are Still Here”
Details on the speakers are provided here. All lectures will take place from 4:00 to 5:30 p.m.; they have been moved to the Alumni Hall to accommodate larger audiences. Best of all for those who are not able to attend in person: they are live-streamed and archived on Gustavus’s website, so you can see them at your convenience.
This U.S.-Dakota War lecture series is made possible with funds from Gustavus Adolphus College, the Minnesota Humanities Council, and the State of Minnesota through the Minnesota Historical Society from the Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund.
Painting: Seth Eastman, “Medicine Dance of the Sioux or Dakotah Indians on the St. Peters River near Fort Snelling 1847,” MHS Collections