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Archive for December, 2012

Cocktail Inspiration for the New Year

Monday, December 31st, 2012

North Star CocktailsLast minute bar tending inspiration from North Star Cocktails by Johnny Michaels.

Check out these links for recipes:

“Handsome Devil” and “Parlez-Vous” on The Heavy Table

Mogwai are the Stars

Happy New Year and Be Safe!

Wishing for a Snow Day

Friday, December 28th, 2012

Boys on tobogan from Minnesota Historical Society in Wishing for a Snow Day by Peg Meier

Excerpt from Wishing for a Snow Day: Growing Up in Minnesota by Peg Meier which includes childhood reminiscences such as this one from Melvin Lynn Frank.

“In winter the Farview hills were a constant challenge. One steep hillside was especially fearsome and bumpy for sliders—an awesome slope that gave breathtaking speed to a ride. Then when nature provided the white gift of snow, kids spent hour after hours on Flexible Flyers riding belly floppers till dark.

Of course, there was street sliding as well. The hill by the fire barn on Lowry was alluring. When it was icy, a youngster could go coasting for three blocks, all the way down to the Soo Line tracks by the shavings shed near the mill. This slide meant crossing the streetcar tracks on Washington Avenue. The boys walking back up the hill stood on the car tracks and signaled those at the top to come on when the coast was clear. Once in a while a boy would mistake a ‘don’t come’ signal for an ‘all clear’—like the day when a youngster went clean under a streetcar, right between the tracks, and continued for two more blocks, scared to death to the end of his ride. The rest of us were shaken, too, and must have been more careful after that experience. I cannot recall that any of the gang was hurt while sledding.”

Image: Boys on toboggan at Groveland Park Elementary School, St. Paul, 1961.
Minnesota Historical Society

150th Anniversary of Mankato Executions

Wednesday, December 26th, 2012

The Crow is to Die For! by Dwayne Wilcox from Ded Unk’unpi—We Are Here

One hundred and fifty years ago today, 38 Dakota men were executed in Mankato for their alleged participation in the U.S-Dakota War of 1862. This was the largest official mass execution in American history.

You can learn more about the war and its aftermath at the Minnesota Historical Society’s website. The following recent articles and posts examine today’s significance and how the anniversary is being commemorated in Minnesota, South Dakota and  Nebraska.

Collections Up Close Item of the Day: Anniversary of Mankato Execution
Ded Unk’unpi-We Are Here Art Exhibit at The Hill House

Indian Country Today: Minnesota Works on Forgiving But Not Forgetting Its Native History

Reuters: Dakota Indians Mark Hangings of 1862 With Trek on Horseback

Star Tribune: Dakota People in Santee to Honor 150th Anniversary of Mass Execution with Daylong Memorial

Pioneer Press: Dakota War: 150th Anniversary of Mass Execution Leaves Unhealed Wounds

Grand Forks Herald: Today Marks Anniversary of Dakota War Hangings

Last Minute Minnesota Gift Ideas!

Friday, December 21st, 2012

One Frozen Lake phpW002i6 The Minnesota Book of Skills

One Frozen Lake by Deborah Jo Larson with paintings by Steve Johnson and Lou Fancher

Canoeing with the Cree Collector’s Edition by Eric Sevareid

The Minnesota Book of Skills by Chris Niskanen

More on “Saint Paul/Imniźa Ska: A Dakota Place” Exhibit at Black Dog

Tuesday, December 18th, 2012

Mni Sota Makoce

Saint Paul, known to the Dakota as Imniźa Ska or White Rock, is, like the rest of Minnesota, a Dakota place. The Dakota people named it and left their marks in the landscape and in its history. Wherever you go in Minnesota there are places where Dakota people have lived and which they have valued over many generations. Described in Mni Sota Makoce: The Land of the Dakota and shown in a new exhibit at the Black Dog Cafe based on the book is a record of the enduring relationship of the Dakota people to their homeland, something that could never be destroyed despite many years of exile brought on by the events of 1862.

The exhibit  features a ceiling-high mural by Owen McBride Platt depicting the history of the Dakota people in Saint Paul and is accompanied by fabric art by Gwen Westerman and paintings by artists Jonathan Thunder and Tiffany Eggenberg. “Saint Paul/Imniźa Ska” is on display at the Black Dog until the end of December 2012.

Bruce White Gwen Westerman, photo by John Ratzloff

Meet the authors of Mni Sota Makoce, Gwen Westerman and Bruce White, tomorrow, Wednesday, December 19, at 7:00 PM.

Black Dog Cafe, corner of Fourth and Broadway in St. Paul’s Lowertown.

Asian Food in Minnesota Quiz

Friday, December 14th, 2012

AsianFlavors-FPO-BookCover2b-PTHThe flavors of China, the Philippine Islands, Japan, the Hmong community, Cambodia, Thailand, India, Sri Lanka, Vietnam, Korea, Indonesia, Malaysia and the Himalayan Mountains are all represented in Asian Flavors: Changing the Tastes of Minnesota Since 1875 by Phyllis Louise Harris with Raghavan Iyer.

Meet the authors tomorrow, Saturday, December 15, here at the Minnesota History Center when they sign copies of their book in Cafe Minnesota from 11 am to 1 pm. The lavishly illustrated book makes a great gift!

Test your knowledge of Asian restaurants in Minnesota and take Laura Yuen’s quiz based on the book over on MPR’s The Cities blog.

E-book Short: Henry Sibley and the U.S.-Dakota War of 1862

Friday, December 14th, 2012

Henry Sibley and the U.S.-Dakota War of 1862

Fur trader, congressman, governor, military leader, and senior statesman Henry Hastings Sibley (1811-91) played a long and influential role in the shaping of Minnesota. Historian and writer Rhoda Gilman has spent over thirty years examining Sibley. In this short e-book, Henry Sibley and the U.S.-Dakota War of 1862, she highlights the rifts and crises leading up to the U.S.-Dakota War of 1862 as keenly represented by then Governor Sibley.

It is available for $2.99 on Kindle, Kobo, Nook, and iTunes and from other popular e-book vendors.

MPR rebroadcast of “Little War on the Prairie”

Tuesday, December 11th, 2012

Mni Sota MakoceMinnesota Public Radio will rebroadcast Little War on the Prairie from This American Life today at 7:00 p.m. The radio documentary produced by Mankato native, John Biewen, explores the history of the U.S.-Dakota War of 1862. Gwen Westerman, co-author of Mni Sota Makoce: The Land of the Dakota is one of the people interviewed by Biewen. The book is a history of Minnesota from a Dakota perspective.

MPR also published a series of pictures on their Minnesota in Photos gallery which include photos of Biewen and Westerman, as well as relevant historical and contemporary images.

“Saint Paul/Imniźa Ska: A Dakota Place” Exhibit at Black Dog

Friday, December 7th, 2012

From Mni Sota Makoce: The Land of the DakotaOrder your beverage of choice at Black Dog Coffee and Wine Bar while shopping at The Lowertown Neighborhood Holiday Bazaar happening tonight and tomorrow and view the “Saint Paul/Imniza Ska–A Dakota Place” exhibit at the cafe.

Based on the book, Mni Sota Makoce: The Land of the Dakota by Gwen Westerman and Lowertown resident, Bruce White, the exhibit features a ceiling high mural by Owen McBride Platt depicting the history of the Dakota people in St. Paul.

Stay tuned for more info on events related to the exhibit.