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American Values @Americas_Crimes
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On this day in 1862, Abraham Lincoln ordered the largest ever mass execution in US history, hanging 38 innocent Dakota men. The execution followed sham military trials where they were found 'guilty' of the ‘crime’ of resisting starvation & their own ethnic cleansing.
The US forced a treaty on the Dakota, which pushed them onto land far too small to support them. As part of treaty, the US promised compensation, which never arrived. As a result, the Dakota were facing starvation in Minnesota’s long, freezing winter.
This forced many of the Dakota to wage a battle of resistance, which lasted 2 weeks. The Dakota agreed to surrender after they receiving a promise that only those who engaged in attacks on white settlers would be punished.
Yet, the US immediately created a concentration camp perversely named “Camp Release” and imprisoned 2,000 Dakota. In military trials, set up to convict, 300 were sentenced to death. Dakota had no lawyers & the trial was conducted in English, which they didn't understand.
Following the guilty verdict, white settlers attacked the shackled Dakota with bricks seriously injuring them as they were being transported in wagons. One baby was snatched from its mother’s arms and beaten to death.
A massive scaffold was been built in Mankato, Minnesota to hold all the Dakota and more than 4,000 whites crowded the square to watch, cheering when the execution was done.
After dangling from the scaffold for 30 min., the bodies were cut down and hauled to a shallow mass grave on a sandbar in the Minnesota River. Before morning, most of the bodies had been dug up and stolen by physicians for use as medical cadavers.
One of the hanged, Hdainyanka (Rattling Runner) had sent an angry letter to his father-in-law saying he's been deceived into surrendering, “I have not killed, wounded or injured a white man or any white persons… and yet today I am set apart for execution.”
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