Dakota: The Story of the Northern Plains by Norman K. Risjord

By Norman K. Risjord

The northern plains are frequently overlooked via the remainder of the state or, if now not, are pointed out within the context of the elements, Mount Rushmore, or the Black Hills. despite the fact that, North Dakota and South Dakota have a colourful past—and present—deserving of larger popularity.

Norman ok. Risjord relates the striking histories of those states, from the geological formation of the good Plains to monetary alterations within the twenty-first century. Risjord takes the reader on a trip throughout the centuries detailing the 1st human population of the northern plains, the Lewis and Clark day trip, homesteading and railroad development, the political impact of the revolutionary circulate, the development of Mount Rushmore, and Wounded Knee II. integrated are tales of such noteworthy characters as French explorer Vérendrye, the Lakota chief purple Cloud, North Dakota political boss Alexander McKenzie, and South Dakota Democrat George S. McGovern.

Despite the shared topography and the rivers that path via either states, the various reactions of the 2 states to the demanding situations of the 20th century supply possibilities for arresting comparisons. This desirable examine the Dakotas’ geography, ecology, politics, and tradition is key studying for Dakotans and people drawn to the wealthy background of this significant area.

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Extra resources for Dakota: The Story of the Northern Plains

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On closer inspection Vérendrye’s estimate of the Mandans brightened. His men counted 130 earthen houses surrounded explorers and fur traders 47 by a wood palisade. Outside the palisade was a ditch fifteen feet deep and fifteen to eighteen feet wide. “All the streets,” he wrote, “open places, and dwellings are similar, and some of our Frenchmen often lost their way among them. The streets and open places are kept very clean, and the ramparts are smooth and broad. . If all their forts are similar to this one, they may be called impregnable against Indians.

Inside was a house and church for the missionary, a house for the commander, four bunkhouses for voyageurs, and a warehouse for furs. The fort was completed by the end of the summer, and although Jean-Baptiste had not yet arrived with supplies, the garrison weathered the winter on an ample supply of venison 42 explorers and fur traders and wild rice. At that point Vérendrye’s luck, never very good, all but left him. Instead of continuing his explorations, he had to spend the spring and summer of 1733 trying to prevent an Indian war.

En) license. Climatologists have noted that north-central America was just beginning to recover from a prolonged drought at that time. The tribe’s oral tradition also remembered a time of periodic warfare, probably in the mid-seventeenth century. This probably referred to conflict with the Cheyennes, who had moved out of the eastern woodlands by 1600 and settled in the valley of the Red River and its lengthy tributary, the Sheyenne. By the end of the seventeenth century this conflict had affected the Hidatsas in two ways.

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