True stories of the US Dakota War

John Biewman

(919) 660-3663

docstudies@duke.edu

Roman Eppers

(952) 594-0069

romanjeppers@gmail.com

This American Life

web@thislife.org

thisamericanlife.org

True Stories of the US Dakota War

The Largest One-Day Mass Execution in US History

  • On This American Life, documentarian John Biewen discusses little known facts about the US Dakota War.
  • Mankato, Minn. was the site of the largest mass hanging in American history.
  • 38 Native Americans, by the order of Abraham Lincoln, were hanged.
  • The war ultimately resulted in the expulsion of the Dakota from Minnesota.
  • Biewen, A Mankato Native, reminisces on how little he knew of the war and how the war is being taught today.
  • The Dakota War took place during the time of the Civil war and claimed more casualties than the Battle of Little Big Horn.
  • December 26, 2012 marks the 150 anniversary of the mass hanging.

Little War on the Prairie

Indians at Mankato; they were found guilty for their actions during the Dakota Conflict. Public execution of 38 Dakota Illustration by W. H. Childs, 12/26/1862. (Courtesy to Pioneer Press: Minnesota Historical Society)

Public execution of 38 Dakota Illustration by W. H. Childs, 12/26/1862. (Courtesy to Pioneer Press: Minnesota Historical Society)

The history of Minnesota, “is often talked about in a light and self-deprecating kind of way… There was always a sense too, growing up in a place like southern Minnesota that nothing had ever happened there.”–John Biewen

“This war is arguably the biggest event in the state’s history. It paved the way for Minnesota to become the place it is today.”–Ira Glass

“North Country: The Making of Minnesota”

Mni Sota Makoce: The Land of the Dakota

 

“This American Life” is a weekly public radio broadcast produced by Chicago Public Media and distributed by Public Radio International. John Biewen is a teacher at Duke University, a documentarian, and editor of, “Reality Radio: Telling True Stories in Sound.”

 

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One thought on “True stories of the US Dakota War

  1. Outstanding work, Roman. You have consistently searched out and found the very best sources for stories you’ve done this semester. I’m so impressed by that. +10/10

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