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Comments on U.S. Government Assimilation Policies

"There was great dissatisfaction among the Indians over many things the whites did. The whites would not let them go to war against their enemies.... Then the whites were always trying to make the Indians give up their life and live like white men – go to farming, work hard as they did – and the Indians did not know how to do that, and did not want to anyway. It seemed too sudden to make such a change. If the Indians had tried to make the whites live like them, the whites would have resisted, and it was the same way with many Indians. The Indians wanted to live as they did before the treaty of Traverse des Sioux – go where they pleased and when they pleased; hunt game wherever they could find it, sell their furs to the traders and live as they could."

Source:
Anderson, Gary Clayton and Alan R. Woolworth, eds. Through Dakota Eyes: Narrative Accounts of the Minnesota Indian War of 1862. Saint Paul, MN: Minnesota Historical Society Press (1988), 23.


Memories of War U.S. Military Non-Combatants Dakota "Peace Party" Dakota Soldiers