I’m continuing to pray and write about the opportunities the upcoming holiday known as Thanksgiving offers for improving knowledge and relationships among Native and non-native peoples. Decolonizing is a process of both education and healing and the movie “Dakota 38” is about both.
I’ve written about how trauma is passed from generation to generation. The events shown in the film “Dakota 38” occurred in 1862. “Today, all the people of the region continue to be affected by this traumatic event.” SUNKTANKA
I have watched the movie “Dakota 38” many times. The photography and, especially the story, are just excellent and very moving. I love how the film grew from a dream that came to Jim Miller, a Native spiritual leader and Vietnam veteran.
This film was created in line with Native healing practices. In honoring this ceremony, we are screening and distributing “Dakota 38″ as a gift rather than for sale. This film was inspired by one individual’s dream and is not promoting any organization or affiliated with any political or religious groups. It was simply created to encourage healing and reconciliation.Smooth Feather
Smooth Feather productions distributes the film as a gift. You can view or download it from the Smooth Feather website, http://www.smoothfeather.com/dakota38/?page_id=7
In 1862 an event occurred, in what is now Minnesota, which had a dramatic impact on the subsequent history of the United States, Canada, and Dakota tribes. The event was the result of federal policy and a newly formed state to remove the Dakota people from their lands and led to the largest mass hanging in US history on December 26, 1862 and the scattering of Dakota people across a region stretching from Saskatchewan to Nebraska. Today, all the people of the region continue to be affected by this traumatic event.SUNKTANKA
We take the youth on the ride, so that they may connect with their culture in a more physical way. By being apart of the ride they are connecting themselves with their ancestors and their horse relatives. It is through the ride that they are able to see the beauty in the history and their culture.
Imagine that you have a dream that is so real you cannot chase the images from your mind. In this dream you are riding a horse through the Great Plains of South Dakota. It is one of those dreams that seem to go on forever, and just before you wake up, you find yourself and your horse at a riverbank watching 38 men being hanged. In the instant before the platform snaps open beneath them, the condemned men reach out to each other and lock hands and arms. You discover that no matter what you do, you cannot forget the dream, and as you try to find out more about the imagery, you learn that the events in your dream really happened. Your dream was not a lonely nightmare, but a window into history — the day after Christmas, Dec. 26, 1862, when President Abraham Lincoln ordered the largest execution in United States history — the hanging of 38 Dakota (Sioux) men.Dakota 38 : Don’t Miss This Seasonal Film of Reconciliation and Hope by Georgianne Nienaber, HUFFPOST, 11/27/2012
Dakota 38 is a film rich with imagery and important spiritual teachings. Central to this imagery is the horse. Dakota belief says that the horse represents the sacred six directions, without which healing is impossible. The front legs are west and north; the back legs, east and south. The head and ears point to the heavens, and the tail anchors all to the earth. In the film, there is a rider-less paint horse. A year after the execution of the 38, Sitting Bull rode on horseback to see the concentration camps in South Dakota. He said that his people were housed worse than animals. Miller believes that Sitting Bull and Crazy Horse were present on the journey to the hanging site, and offered the paint as their mount.
In the spring of 2005, Jim Miller, a Native spiritual leader and Vietnam veteran, found himself in a dream riding on horseback across the great plains of South Dakota. Just before he awoke, he arrived at a riverbank in Minnesota and saw 38 of his Dakota ancestors hanged. At the time, Jim knew nothing of the largest mass execution in United States history, ordered by Abraham Lincoln on December 26, 1862. “When you have dreams, you know when they come from the creator… As any recovered alcoholic, I made believe that I didn’t get it. I tried to put it out of my mind, yet it’s one of those dreams that bothers you night and day.”Smooth Feather
Now, four years later, embracing the message of the dream, Jim and a group of riders retrace the 330-mile route of his dream on horseback from Lower Brule, South Dakota to Mankato, Minnesota to arrive at the hanging site on the anniversary of the execution. “We can’t blame the wasichus anymore. We’re doing it to ourselves. We’re selling drugs. We’re killing our own people. That’s what this ride is about, is healing.” This is the story of their journey- the blizzards they endure, the Native and Non-Native communities that house and feed them along the way, and the dark history they are beginning to wipe away.
This film was created in line with Native healing practices. In honoring this ceremony, we are screening and distributing “Dakota 38″ as a gift rather than for sale. This film was inspired by one individual’s dream and is not promoting any organization or affiliated with any political or religious groups. It was simply created to encourage healing and reconciliation.
NAMES OF THE EXECUTED INDIANS.
#1 was to be TA-TAY-ME-MA but he was reprieved because of his age and questions related to his innocence
- Plan-doo-ta, (Red Otter.)
- Wy-a-tah-ta-wa, (His People.)
- Hin-hau-shoon-ko-yag-ma-ne, (One who walks clothed in an Owl’s Tail.)
- Ma-za-bom-doo, (Iron Blower.)
- Wak-pa-doo-ta, (Red Leaf.)
- Wa-he-hua, _.
- Sua-ma-ne, (Tinkling Walker.)
- Ta-tay-me-ma, (Round Wind) — respited.
- Rda-in-yan-ka, (Rattling Runner.)
- Doo-wau-sa, (The Singer.)
- Ha-pau, (Second child of a son.)
- Shoon-ka-ska, (White Dog.)
- Toon-kau-e-cha-tag-ma-ne, (One who walks by his Grandfather.)
- E-tay-doo-tay, (Red Face.)
- Am-da-cha, (Broken to Pieces.)
- Hay-pe-pau, (Third child of a son.)
- Mah-pe-o-ke-na-jui, (Who stands on the Clouds.)
- Harry Milord, (Half Breed.)
- Chas-kay-dau, (First born of a son.)
- Baptiste Campbell, _.
- Ta-ta-ka-gay, (Wind Maker.)
- Hay-pin-kpa, (The Tips of the Horn.)
- Hypolite Auge, (Half-breed.)
- Ka-pay-shue, (One who does not Flee.)
- Wa-kau-tau-ka, (Great Spirit.)
- Toon-kau-ko-yag-e-na-jui, (One who stands clothed with his Grandfather.)
- Wa-ka-ta-e-na-jui, (One who stands on the earth.)
- Pa-za-koo-tay-ma-ne, (One who walks prepared to shoot.)
- Ta-tay-hde-dau, (Wind comes home.)
- Wa-she-choon, (Frenchman.)
- A-c-cha-ga, (To grow upon.)
- Ho-tan-in-koo, (Voice that appears coming.)
- Khay-tan-hoon-ka, (The Parent Hawk.)
- Chau-ka-hda, (Near the Wood.)
- Hda-hin-hday, (To make a rattling voice.)
- O-ya-tay-a-kee, (The Coming People.)
- Ma-hoo-way-ma, (He comes for me.)
- Wa-kin-yan-wa, (Little Thunder.)
Composers Jay McKay and Jay Parrotta spent three years fusing sound and visuals into a cinematic experience that takes the viewer onto the Northern Plains and through a relentless pounding blizzard. Sound has the ability to transport, and the mix of chants, drums and melody is spellbinding.
Thank you for sharing this unspoken part of history.
Thanks for telling me about your connection to the ride.