‘Why Treaties Matter’ Exhibit Coming to SMSU; Three Panel Presentations Planned

Published Tuesday, April 14, 2015

A traveling exhibit, “Why Treaties Matter: Self-Government in the Dakota and Ojibwe Nations,” will be on display from Saturday April 18 through Friday, May 8 in the Student Center, upper level, at Southwest Minnesota State University.

In conjunction with the display, a trio of panel presentations will be hosted on campus on April 22, 27 and 28.

The exhibition is part of a statewide tour with visits throughout the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities System. In 2010, a resolution creating a unique partnership of the Minnesota Indian Affairs Council, the Minnesota Humanities Center and the Smithsonian’s National Museum of the American Indian in Washington, D.C. was approved by the tribes residing in Minnesota, making it possible for the exhibition to be developed as an educational tool for Minnesota audiences.

The exhibition includes 20 free-standing banners with explanatory text, historical and contemporary photographs and maps, and a 10-minute video entitled, “A Day in the Life of the Minnesota Tribal Nations.”

The exhibit reveals how Dakota and Ojibwe treaties with the U.S. government affected the lands and lives of the Indigenous peoples of the place now called Minnesota, and explains why these binding agreements between nations still matter today. It is meant to share important cultural information with all Minnesotans, that they may better understand the true circumstances surrounding Minnesota land, its use and the treatment of the land’s Indigenous peoples today.

Three panel presentations are scheduled to coincide with the exhibit. They include:

• Wednesday, April 22, 11 a.m.-1 p.m., Charter Hall 217. “Why Treaties Matter.” Panelists Annamarie Hill, an enrolled member of the Red Lake Band of Chippewa Indian and Executive Director of the Minnesota Indian Affairs Council; Jim Bear Jacobs, a member of the Stockbridge-Munsee Mohican Nation and a parish associate at the Church of All Nations; and Bob Klanderud, Dakota, from the Greater Minneapolis Council of Churches, Division of Indian Work.

• Monday, April 27, 11 a.m.-noon, Charter Hall 217. “Treaties, Tribes and Connections” with Jim Jones, Cultural Resource Director for the Minnesota Indian Affairs Council.

• Tuesday, April 28, 11 a.m.-noon, Charter Hall 124. “Creating and Sustaining Lasting Partnerships and Programs: How the ‘Why Treaties Matter’ Exhibit Came to Be. Annamarie Hill, Executive Director of the Minnesota Indian Affairs Council.

The tour is made possible by a partnership with the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities, the Minnesota Indian Affairs Council, the Minnesota Humanities Center and the National Museum of the American Indian.

For further information, contact Michele Knife Sterner, 507-537-7382; Michele.sterner@smsu.edu