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Monday, April 30, 2012

Life Returns to The Northern Plains

Trees begin to bud leaves as pictured above. Cottonwood trees wake up from a prolonged autumn and show boaters and fishers they survived last year's flood.

The Missouri River holds a special place in the hearts of the native peoples and the people who've come to make their homes in the river valley.

In the middle distance above is Fox Island, a developed suburb of Bismarck. It was under water during last year's flood. In the middle to far distance is Sibley Island. Why are these places special?

What we call Fox Island today was where the Corps of Discovery encamped on their return to St. Louis in the late summer of 1806. They took with them the Mandan Indian Chief Shehek Shote (White Wolf), aka Sheheke (White Coyote), who told them of the history of where he was born across the river at On A Slant village.

What we call Sibley Island, of course was where a steamboat, the Assiniboin, became caught on a sandbar and burned, in the 1830s. Later, in 1863, General Sibley's command engaged what he estimated as a force of about 2500 people (about able-bodied warriors) in a punitive campaign against the Sioux, only he didn't realize until later that he fought people who had nothing to do with the Dakota Conflict in Minnesota the previous year.

1 comment:

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