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Fort Ridgely Monument
Nicollet County
Minnesota  USA

Cemetery notes and/or description:
This monument is located on the grounds of Fort Ridgely at Fort Ridgely State Park near Fairfax, Minnesota.

It is important to point out that the monument represents a one-sided viewpoint of the war - the side of the US European-American soldiers and citizens. The monument states that on "August 18, 1862, the Sioux Indians of the Upper Minnesota River, in violation of their treaties, broke into open rebellion, and within a few days thereafter, massacred about one thousand citizens in the south western part of the State, and destroyed property of the value of millions of dollars..." The monument does not address the causes of the war, which include broken treaties, fraud, or corruption on the part of the US government and its representatives (Indian traders and agents).

The monument was erected "In memory of the fallen, in recognition of the living and for the emulation of future generations." Part of the inscription states "Erected A. D. 1896, by the State of Minnesota to preserve the site of Ft. Ridgely, a United States military post established in 1853, and especially to perpetuate the names and commemorate the heroism of the soldiers and citizens of the State, who successfully defended the fort during nine days of seige and investment, August 18-27, 1862, and who gallantly resisted two formidable and protracted assaults upon it, made August 20 and 22, 1862, by a vastly superior force of Sioux Indians under command of Little Crow and other noted Indian leaders and warriors.

August 18, 1862, the Sioux Indians of the Upper Minnesota River, in violation of their treaties, broke into open rebellion, and within a few days thereafter, massacred about one thousand citizens in the south western part of the State, and destroyed property of the value of millions of dollars. Many men, women and children fled to Fort Ridgely and were under its protection during the siege. The successful defense of the Fort by its garrison, consisting of parts of Companies B and C, Fifth Regiment, Minnesota Volunteer Infantry, the "Renville Rangers," and citizens and refugees, was very largely instrumental in saving other portions of Minnesota from ravage and devastation, and greatly contributed to the ultimate defeat of the Indians and their expulsion from the State..."

The monument lists the names of US soldiers and citizens, too numerous to mention here due to space constraints.

The monument was approved by the Legislature in 1895 and dedicated on August 20, 1896.
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Fort Ridgely Monument
Added by: Cindy K. Coffin
 
Fort Ridgely Monument
Added by: Cindy K. Coffin
 
Fort Ridgely Monument
Added by: MN Headstone Hunter
 
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