Near Fairfax in Nicollet County, Minnesota — The American Midwest (Upper Plains)
Soldiers and civilian refugees peered anxiously in this direction, fearing another attack and praying for help. The garrison had dug entrenchments and built an earthen wall south of the fort. Barricades on all sides had been strengthened. During the fighting, all of the outbuildings except for the guardhouse and magazines had been destroyed. Most of the livestock had been captured and their feed burned. It was difficult for anyone to flee the post without animals to carry them.
Relief arrived on August 27, 1862, as 175 mounted volunteer soldiers, led by Colonel Samuel McPhail, galloped down the road in front of you. The next day, 1,500 men led by Colonel Henry H. Sibley arrived. This group's first act was to load supply wagons with women and children who had taken refuge at the fort and send them to St. Paul for safety. Sibley also sent 150 men to bury those slain at the Lower Sioux Agency and Redwood Ferry and to rebuild the ferry.
Erected by the Minnesota Historical Society.
Topics and series. Forts and Castles • Wars, US Indian. In addition, it is included in the Minnesota Historical Society series list. A significant historical year for this entry is 1862.
Location. 44° 27.179′ N, 94° 44.091′ W. Marker is near Fairfax, Minnesota, in Nicollet County. Marker can be reached from County Highway 30 1.1 miles west of State Highway 4, on the right when traveling west. Marker is in Fort Ridgely State Park; fee area – a Minnesota state park vehicle permit is required. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 72404 County State Aid Highway 30, Fairfax MN 55332, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Four Days From Fort Snelling (a few steps from this marker); Economic Engine (a few steps from this marker); Officers' Quarters—C (a few steps from this marker); This Fort Had a Purpose (within shouting distance of this marker); A Minority in Their Homeland / U.S.-Dakota Conflict (within shouting distance of this marker); Surgeon's Quarters—Headquarters (within shouting distance of this marker); Fort Ridgely State Monument A Doctor's Life (within shouting distance of this marker). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Fairfax.
More about this marker. caption:
David Geister, Relief Arrives from the East, Wednesday, August 27, 1862, 2005
Regarding Reinforcements Arrive. In 1862, the Minnesota Dakota, also known by the French term, “Sioux," waged war against the United States following two years of unfulfilled treaty obligations. Dakota forces attacked Fort Ridgely twice – one of the few military forts west of the Mississippi to withstand a direct assault.
Also see . . .
1. Minnesota Historical Society. Fort Ridgely History. "The fort was designed as a police station to keep peace as settlers poured into the former Dakota lands." (Submitted on February 5, 2014.)
2. National Park Service. Fort Ridgely Battle Summary. "On August 20, about 400 Sioux attacked the fort but were repulsed. On the 22nd, 800 Sioux attacked the fort again, but the garrison and civilians held the fort." (Submitted on February 5, 2014.)
3. Battle of Fort Ridgely. Wikipedia entry. "Towards the cooler evening hours, the Dakota warriors staged a more serious attack on the northern side of the fort. Lt. Sheehan was forced to order the buildings on that side to be set afire as he became aware that the Indians were sneaking into the Fort through them." (Submitted on February 5, 2014.)
Additional keywords. U.S.-Dakota War of 1862
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. It was originally submitted on February 5, 2014, by Keith L of Wisconsin Rapids, Wisconsin. This page has been viewed 405 times since then and 10 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3. submitted on February 5, 2014, by Keith L of Wisconsin Rapids, Wisconsin.