After ceremony, several Dakota who had brought their tribal flags boarded large voyageur style canoes that seated 8+ people. They paddled for an hour plus around Pike Island, departing from a spot near where their ancestors were boarded from the Fort Snelling concentration camp onto boats, the first of many transfers as they were shipped away from Minnesota after the US removal act of 1863.
|The list of Dakota families held in the wooden stockade|
We drove around to the far side of the island to greet the boaters and to catch a glimpse of the groups on their journey to the confluence. As they paddled under the white Pike bridge, they chanted on cue "2058" for the camera man who is creating a time capsule video to open and begin show four years before the 200th anniversary commemoration in 2062. He smiled with his eyes: "I will be 103 years old then...how old will you be Stephanie?"
"Ah, I will be only 91...a few years younger than my Grandmother is right now. But my son Caleb and his young Dakota friends here today, perhaps they will be here to open your time capsule and remember the perfect blue sky of today."
"Yeah! I will only be 58..." replied my son Caleb. "Do you think the island will look the same? I will be taller by then. Do you think the children from today will recognize each other?"
|Through Bdote (confluence) as they passed the north island tip|
Tonight they heard the Mankato Symphony play at Father Hennepin Park a special composition dedicated to them, then watch the "Dakota 38" movie, under a sky that only the Creator could paint.