2012 marks the 150th Anniversary of the U.S.- Dakota war of 1862. The war ended with the largest one-day execution in American history, where 38 Dakota warriors were hanged on December 26, 1862 in Mankato, Minnesota. Some 1,700 Dakota women, children, and elders were forcibly marched to a concentration camp at Fort Snelling.
Many American Indian advocates hope to bring attention to what happened, although there is disagreement about the best way to honor this dark history.
Some American Indians focus on the need for better American Indian representation both in cultural institutions such as the Minnesota Historical Society and in school curricula. Others call for the razing of Fort Snelling, which to them symbolizes the genocide of the Dakota people.
I propose to write a story about the ramifications of the Dakota war for Minnesota today, and on the events and actions that will lead up to and mark the 2012 anniversary.