top of page

Dakota Spirit & Densmore's Gift

Local Dakota History

The Prairie Island Indian Community are descendants of the Mdewakanton Band of Eastern Dakota, also known as the Mississippi or Minnesota Sioux.  The Prairie Island Reservation was created in 1936 with about 300 livable acres.  They are a sovereign community which means self-governing and operate a casino and a hotel.

Frances Densmore Story

Born in 1867 on the banks of the Mississippi, to one of Red Wing’s first families, Frances Densmore had an early fascination with native cultures.  She spent 40 years criss-crossing the country with primitive media equipment, gathering one of the most extensive collection of Native American songs, traditions and photos ever organized.  Today her collection is stored at the Smithsonian Museum in Washington.  In 2004 a Densmore’s recording was honored as one of the first 100 sounds gathered for the US Registry of Sounds by the Library of Congress.

Dakota Links

Densmore Links

bottom of page