I got an email yesterday from a student at my old alma mater, Mankato State, which was rechristened Minnesota Univeristy, Mankato. I get such emails once a month or so because someone has stumbled onto my website. Jay stumbled onto my site while researching the now hidden monument to the mass hanging of 36 Sioux Indians in Mankato during the Civil War. It was the greatest mass execution in US History and was quite an attraction for the vengeful and the curious after the “Sioux Uprising.”
The monument, (which looks more like a tombstone) was spashed with red paint representingÂ blood in the early 1970’s at the beginning of the American Indian Movement.
Erected at atÂ time whenÂ docile indians were tucked away quietly on their reservations the monument became an embarassment for Mankato in our more enlightened generation. At some point after I left town it was buried byÂ the City of Mankato and has remained hidden like Hitler’s ashes.Â
I had written a column called “Here were hanged”Â a few years ago in response to a letter-to-the-editor complaining that DuluthÂ shouldn’t build a monument to the shameful lynching that took place here in 1921.