Battle of Wood Lake, MN

Photos/Text courtesy of Lanny Witter, Rochester, MN
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Fort Ridgely, MN:
Battles of Birch Coulee and Redwood Ferry
Battlefield Dedication:
1. Expanded Wood Lake Battlefield Site To Be Dedicated Today
2. Wood Lake Battlefield to be dedicated - West Central Tribune
3. Wood Lake association to dedicate newly acquired land Sept. 22

4. Wood Lake Battlefield Preservation Association | Facebook

1. Battle of Wood Lake:
2. Wood Lake Battlefield Preservation Association

3. Battle of Wood Lake - Wikipedia
4. Battle Summary: Wood Lake, MN
5. Home - Wood Lake, Minnesota

6. Dakota War of 1862 - Wikipedia
7. Dakota War of 1862: story, pictures and information:

Nine Indian/Army battles are listed as Civil War Battle Fields by the CWSAC. Two of these sites are located in Minnesota. Fort Ridgely was attacked two times during the Dakota War of 1862. This was one of the few times in history that Indians attacked an armed fort. The other site is the Wood Lake Battlefield. This was the final battle in the Dakota War of 1862. Around 600 to 800 settlers were killed in the 5 week war. The number of Indian casualties is unknown. By the end of 1862, 303 Indians were found guilty and sentenced to be hanged. President Abraham Lincoln pared this down to 38. These 38 were hanged at Mankato, MN 12/26/1862 in the largest mass execution in our nations history.


(Sept. 2012) Enlarge Battlefield Marker
Enlarged Views: Hit Back Button to return


(Sept. 2012) Enlarge Dedication Marker
Wood Lake Battlefield was officially dedicated September 22, 2012. This was 150 years after General Henry Hastings Sibley defeated Little Crow in the Dakota War of 1862. An easement was obtained from the property owners and 54 acres of the battlefield are now under the management of the Minnesota Historical Society

(Sept. 2012) Enlarge Wood Lake Battlefield  

(2010) Enlarge Entrance gate to the Wood Lake Battle Field Monument
The sign above the gate reads Sioux Indian War 1862. It was on this site and along the lake that 1,612 US troops led by Col. Henry Hastings Sibley camped for the night on September 22, 1862. On September 23rd Indians led by Chief Little Crow with a force of about 700 Indians had planned to attack the troops as they broke camp and were strung out along the road. His plans were foiled when a couple of wagons left the troops site to get potatoes a few miles away. The wagons passed near Indians hiding in the tall prairie grass forcing the Indians to start the battle prematurely. When the element of surprise was lost only the Indians closest to troops were able to engage in the battle. The 2 hour battle resulted in 41 troops killed or wounded. The number of Indians casualties was unknown. Little Crow broke off the engagement and retreated bringing an end to the war.


(2010) Enlarge Wood Lake Battlefield Monument

This monument was constructed in 1910.

(2010) Enlarge Artifacts from the battle



(2010) Enlarge Battle of Wood Lake Marker


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