This year marks the 150th anniversary of the U.S./Dakota Conflict of 1862, and many entities are spending time commemorating the events of that significant part of Minnesota’s history.
Among those which have planned events is the Redwood Falls Public Library, which has been working with local historians to put together a schedule of events throughout August.
“I’m really excited about what is going on,” said Robin Osland, Redwood Falls Public Library head librarian.
As part of the schedule, there is something being held nearly every day from Aug. 1-31 including round table discussions, visits by authors and videos all focused on the war.
“I?want to be able to share with others more about who the Dakota people are,”?said Sandee Geshick, a member of the Lower Sioux Community who has helped with the planning for the event. “We need to have an open dialogue to help all of us understand each other.”
Events begin with a presentation by author Dean Urdahl.
Urdahl, who has written three books, and this Wednesday from 12-1 p.m. will be at the library and is going to be doing a presentation.
A movie series known as “500 Nations” is going to be played each Friday from 1-4 p.m. at the library.
One of the highlights is a tour of area historic sites from the conflict. The tour is being held Aug. 7 from 1-5 p.m. The bus tour is going to include stops at the Redwood County museum, the city park, Birch Coulee Battlefield, the Minnesota River Valley Historical Monument near Morton, the Renville County museum, the Lower Sioux Agency Historic site and St. Cornelia’s church.
Osland said there are still spaces available for the tour, and those who would like to take part ion in this free event should call the library at (507)?627-8650 as soon as possible to reserve a spot.
Another of the highlights is taking place Aug. 8 when Clifford Canku is going to do a presentation on Dakota prisoner of war letters.
A book has been published with letters written by Dakota men who were taken to a prison in Davenport, Iowa after the hangings took place.
The letters have been translated, and Geshick was one of those who assisted with the translation. She said they were letters written by the Dakota men to their loved ones, but she believes none of them ever arrived at their intended destination.
The letters presentation is being held at the library from 11 a.m. until 1 p.m.
There are plenty of other events scheduled at the library. For more information, stop by the public library.
“We need to come together to make our community better for the future,” said Geshick.
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