Colonial Narratives

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Indian Woman Dressing a Buffalo Skin.

The traditional colonial narrative of Minnesota tells the tale of Indians, a homogenous and ultimately ill-fated indigenous population – doomed by lack of resistance to disease, doomed by an inherently violent culture, and doomed by their inability to adapt to change. It is frequently the story of savage Natives attacking defenseless White settlers with no warning, being defeated by a brave and outnumbered Army, and then disappearing into the untamed, faceless West.

 The full story, inclusive of Native perspectives, is necessarily more complex. In the following section are some images relating to colonial views of the Natives peoples of Minnesota.