By Friends of the Falls | May 18, 2023
In addition to National Native American Heritage month in November, Minnesota celebrates American Indian month throughout the month of May. There are 11 federally recognized Tribal Nations in Mni Sota made up of four Dakota (Sioux) tribes and seven Anishinaabe (Chippewa, Ojibwe). In addition to those federally recognized tribes, the Twin Cities is home to a strong urban American Indian community.
In honor of American Indian Month, we’ve gathered a list of videos, books, experiences and other resources to help you learn more about the Indigenous peoples in Mni Sota.
- Dakota Exile Documentary : “Beginning in 1862, the federal and state government began to drive the Dakota people from Minnesota. The story of their exile is told through the words of Dakota elders and tribal historians.” Twin Cities PBS
- Dodging Bullets – Stories From Survivors of Historical Trauma: “Native Americans have dodged bullets since first contact with Europeans. This award-winning film brings a cross-generational sampling of Indigenous people, researchers, and politicians to reveal stunning reasons for disproportionately high incidences of health and social issues. This collection of remarkable stories, names Historical Trauma as the unique and insidious part of the genetic code.” Streaming on Amazon Prime, Roku, Apple TV, and Google Play
- Dakota Place Names in Minnesota: In this video put together by Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community you’ll hear the Dakota pronunciations for places around Mni Sota that get their name from the Dakota language.
The Hennepin County Library has put together a list of books written by Native American author. To view the list for children’s books and adult books check out the link here: Children’s Books , Adult Books
Other titles include:
- The Seed Keeper by Diane Wilson
- Mni Sota Makoce: The Land of the Dakota by Gwen Westerman and Bruce White
- The Sioux Chef’s Indigenous Kitchen by Sean Sherman with Beth Dooley
- Hoċokata Ti: “Hocokata Ti’s 3,805-square-foot public exhibit, Mdewakanton: Dwellers of the Spirit Lake, provides visitors with a cultural experience that enhances their knowledge and understanding of the Mdewakanton Dakota people and their history. Tours are offered to guests, where an assortment of Dakota Sioux artifacts can be viewed in the public gallery.” General Admission ticket prices vary from $5.00-$8.00, to learn more about visiting the exhibit visit their website (linked above in blue).
- Dakhóta Omníčiye 2023: : “We invite you to join us for the 4th Dakhóta Omníčiye and share community knowledge, teachings, and stories with one another. This free event will be held at Historic Fort Snelling and will include hands-on cultural workshops, artist teachings, film screening, book readings, and presentations from various members of our communities. ” Takes place Saturday May 20, 2023 at Historic Fort Snelling from 8:30 AM- 7:30 PM.
- For more events happening in the remainder of May check out this calendar put together by the Metropolitan Urban Indian Directors here: American Indian Month Calendar
- National Congress of American Indians, “Tribal Nations and the United States: An Introduction”
- Minnesota Indian Affairs Council (MIAC), “Tribal Nations in Minnesota”
- Indian Land Tenure Foundation, “Tribal Land Tenure Issues”
- MIAC, Smithsonian Nat’l Museum of the American Indian, Minnesota Humanities Center, “Why Treaties Matter: Self-Government in the Dakota and Ojibwe Nations”
- U.S. Dept. of the Interior, Bureau of Indian Affairs, Federally Recognized Tribes