Thursday, November 10, 2016

Today, I went to Pike Island, "Center of Earth" for the Santee (Dakoda) Sioux, to get blessing for my trip to Standing Rock. At the muddy bank where the Mississippi meets the Minnesota River, I came upon these rocks, perfectly flat at the bottom, standing in a semi-circle in the muddy sand. The rivers have brought them there, standing rocks in red, brown, white, black...imprinted with fossils from millions of years ago.
They stand as witnesses under the Fort Snelling, on this Island, where the Sioux fished, hunted and collected stones to sharpen their knives for hundreds of years, until the white settlers took their land and rivers, causing the massive starvation. In 1862, the Little Crow led the Sioux to an uprising. The US Army put the revolt down, then condemned 303 Dakotas for war crimes. President Lincoln remanded the death sentence of 285 of the warriors, signing off on the execution of 38 Dakota men on December 29, 1862 in Mankato, Minnesota, the largest mass execution in US history. Pike Island was used as the concentration camp for more than 1600 Dakota women, children and old men. Many died of diseases in winter. The survivors were exiled in spring 1863. US government announced all the previous treaties were null and void.
Now these stones are blessing water protectors at Standing Rock.…

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