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Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Dakota 38 Ride Crossing Lake County

An eager reader alerts me to the Dakota 38 Reconciliation Ride, a project started by Lakota spiritual leader Jim Miller to commemorate. Miller is leading riders on horseback on a 300-mile route from Lower Brule to Mankato. The riders are scheduled to arrive in Mankato on December 26th, the 146th anniversary of the hanging of 38 Dakota warriors who had participated in the Dakota Sioux Uprising of 1862. This hanging is the largest mass execution in American history.

Miller, a descendant of Dakota Indians forced from Minnesota after the uprising, organized the ride in response to a dream about a long ride that took him to the site of that execution. His goal for the ride: bring awareness and reconciliation to all who share this history.

His more immediate goal is just to stay warm. The riders got caught in the blizzard Sunday and had to stop in Howard. They hoped to make Madison yesterday and keep on trucking to Flandreau, Pipestone, and points east. Their route will also take them through New Ulm, where some of the fiercest fighting of the 1862 uprising took place.

So if you see a band of horse riders on Highway 34 (and then Minnesota 30 and that great slanty 23 up to Marshall), give them... and history... and one man's hopeful vision some room on the road.

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