On Tuesday, June 24, 2003 severe thunderstorms spawned three tornadoes that touched down here at 7:46 p.m. The F2 tornadoes, with winds as high as 157 miles an hour, struck several farms immediately south of town, then bore down upon the community, . . . — — Map (db m70072) HM
Mary Schwandt and her brother August were the only two of their extended family of nine who survived the terrible six week long war now usually named the United States - Dakota Conflict of 1862. During Mary's captivity with the Dakota . . . — — Map (db m71301) HM
State of Minnesota
In Memory of
& Their Children
Fredrik & Christian
Walz & John Frass
Murdered by Sioux
Indians . . . — — Map (db m69572) HM WM
On August 17, 1862, Dakota leaders held a series of councils to discuss going to war. Earlier that day an incident in Acton Township had brought conditions to a crisis when young Dakota hunters killed five immigrants. The council began at the Rice . . . — — Map (db m170343) HM WM
The Minnesota River Valley was ripe for conflict in 1862. Tensions between the Dakota people and the U.S. government had long been
brewing over broken treaty promises and dramatic changes to Dakota traditional lifestyles. Focused on the Civil War, . . . — — Map (db m170344) HM
* Vicksburg was approximately in existence from 1869 until 1878. The small village was located close to the Minnesota River (10 miles south of Renville in Flora Township or a half mile south of this sign). Within the town was a a general store, . . . — — Map (db m68969) HM
Long before Vicksburg was established a French man, Charles Patterson, set a trading post
along the Minnesota River to the east of this location. Known for his bearskin hat, and bear
considered sacred by the natives, Mr. Patterson became known as . . . — — Map (db m170342) HM
"It was a beautiful place to encamp, but it proved an unfortunate one for us, as the enemy had the advantage both of the timber and hill for protection."
To . . . — — Map (db m71481) HM
On the prairie half a mile east of this point, a party of about 160 troops was attacked by Sioux at dawn, Sept. 2, 1862.
During the battle, the force was surrounded for thirty hours, losing over a third of its number in killed and wounded.
. . . — — Map (db m67451) HM
All our horses, both cavalry and transportation horses, were either killed or so badly wounded as to make them unfit for service."
Tethered to wagons on the . . . — — Map (db m71575) HM
north side Erected by the State of Minnesota in grateful remembrance of the Heroism of those gallant soldiers and citizens who fought the Battle of Birch Coulee and to perpetuate their names.
Capt. Hiram P. Grant. Co. A. 6th Minnesota . . . — — Map (db m69514) HM WM
In 1862, settlers in the area of Birch Coolie Creek were living peaceful lives, having come to this area to take up new homesteads. They were in large part recent immigrants to this country. When they settled here they were mostly unaware of . . . — — Map (db m69354) HM WM
"We had no difficulty in surrounding the camp. The pickets were only a little way from it."
No soldiers would have attempted to climb this hill during the battle. . . . — — Map (db m71551) HM
Erected by the
Renville Co. Pioneers,
Aug. 18, 1907.
In memory of
Mrs. S. R. Henderson
and her two little
who were killed by
the Indians in the
of Aug. 18, 1862. . . . — — Map (db m70514) HM WM
In the late summer of 1862, the land on which you're standing was a war zone. The causes of that war had been brewing for decades.
In treaties signed between 1805 and 1858, the Dakota nation ceded much of its land to the U.S. government. . . . — — Map (db m71337) HM
On a summer day in 1862 the Redwood Ferry landing on the Minnesota River below this point was the scene of the first attack against military troops in one of America's most tragic Indian wars.
Early in the morning of August 18, 1862, a large . . . — — Map (db m68897) HM
Made of solid granite, the “Friendly Indian Monument” was dedicated in 1899 in honor of six Dakota Indians who befriended and protected government employees, immigrant settlers, missionaries, or aided soldiers during the . . . — — Map (db m70864) HM
This monument was dedicated in 1894 as a testament to U.S. soldiers and civilians who fought and died in the Battle of Birch Coulee. The U.S.–Dakota Conflict of 1862 started when Dakota Indians, frustrated over broken treaty . . . — — Map (db m70848) HM
Just before sunrise on September 2, 1862, the sharp crack of a warning shot signaled the start of the Battle of Birch Coulee.
One of the bloodiest battles of the U.S.-Dakota War was fought here. For a day and a half, this place echoed . . . — — Map (db m71159) HM
In the then tall grass in
the swale, about 800 feet
north, a body of Sioux
Indians under Gray Bird
attacked the whites.
Behind the hill 400 feet
to the east was the last
point of attack by the
Indians, whence they were
driven by . . . — — Map (db m154042) HM
Erected A. D. 1899 by the Minnesota Valley Historical Society to commemorate the brave, faithful, and humane conduct of the loyal Indians who saved the lives of white people and were true to their obligations throughout the Sioux War in Minnesota . . . — — Map (db m69496) HM WM
"I led my men up from the west through the grass and took up a position 200 yards from the camp behind a small knoll."
You are standing where Wamditanka and his band took . . . — — Map (db m71532) HM
Before the Battle
When glaciers receded from this region thousands of years ago, they left behind huge rivers and lakes in a broad valley.
Over time, the valley became filled with tallgrass prairies, small lakes, and the waterway known . . . — — Map (db m71445) HM
The story of Birch Coulee is told vividly by the men who fought here.
As you move along this trail, you will follow the stories of two men: Joseph Anderson, a captain in the U.S. Army, and Wamditanka (Big Eagle), a Mdewakanton chief.
. . . — — Map (db m71459) HM
"When the men in advance reached Little Crow's village...they saw a column of mounted men and some wagons...going eastward." Wamditanka
The "men in advance" were Dakota scouts. According to . . . — — Map (db m71472) HM
A general store was built about 1886 and was called Florita, being in Flora township. A post office was installed in the store with about 40 boxes. In 1898 the Flora Farmers Co-operative Creamery was started and did business until 1912. This . . . — — Map (db m68991) HM
This land was first tilled in 1867 by Ole Enestvedt and a pair of oxen with a single bottom plow. The early years were hard, back-breaking years as homesteading usually was. In 1900, Ole and Anna's youngest son, Engebret started the . . . — — Map (db m71275) HM
This is the Lars Rudi home. Lars was the son of a farmer in Uvdal, Numedal, Norway, and was one of seven Rudi children who grew to adulthood. All but one of the Rudi siblings immigrated to America hoping to make a better life for . . . — — Map (db m71224) HM
These ruins are all that remain of a large stone house built in 1861 by Joseph R. Brown, frontier fur trader, Indian agent, politician, journalist, and inventor.
The house, known as Farther and Gay Castle, was a center of hospitality and . . . — — Map (db m69451) HM
This memorial to Ole O. and Anne Enestvedt and their children is near the location of the log and dugout home of these Norwegian immigrants. This pioneer family staked their homestead claim in the spring of 1867, shortly after the "Indian . . . — — Map (db m71288) HM
A Grand and Luxurious Home
This was the first house built of quarried granite in the Minnesota River valley during the 1860s. Most structures then were cabins or small wooden frame houses. Brick and stone structures had been built at . . . — — Map (db m69465) HM
This water wheel was put to use about 100 years ago, (around 1900) in this creek to pump water to a storage tank in Peter and Gunhild (Enestvedt) Kittelsland's round barn. The tank was located up in the hay mow so the water had enough height for the . . . — — Map (db m71281) HM