Rocky Boy Tribe of Chippewa Indians of Montana

The September 23, 1862 Battle of Lake Wood

This battle could have been avoided because just before the battle, both the Anishinabek and Americans were negotiating about possibly bringing the war to an end. Those negotiations were primarily over white settlers who had been taken captive by Little Shell’s brave warriors. During the negotiations Little Shell let his American enemy know why he ordered his warriors to make war against the evil Americans, and probably attempted to negotiate a land deal with the evil land hungry Americans, by using those white captives as a bargain. The Americans were so full of greed and selfishness they refused to accept Little Shell’s offers. With 1,400 American soldiers now taking part in the war, the last battle of the 1862 Minnesota uprising was going to be fought. Little Shell knew of the new American reinforcements and ordered his brave warriors to ambush the invading American military force, which was well armed, and had the superior weapons. Most of Little Shell’s brave warriors were still using bows and arrows, spears and war clubs. In all, the American military force numbered 1,617 soldiers, while the number of Anishinabe warriors was probably around 1,000 or slightly more.

For two hours the brave Anishinabe warriors battled against an enemy who had the fineness modern day weapons of war that time period could offer. The Anishinabek did not have the equal weapons of the Americans, yet they stood their ground against their hated American enemy for two hours, then made their decision to exit the battle. Indian casualties were probably slightly more than the Americans, with as many as 15 being possibly killed. American casualties were 41, with 7 killed. After this battle the war gradually stopped. In 1863, Little Shell reluctantly negotiated a treaty with the evil white race which ceded to the evil Americans, most of their land in northwestern Minnesota, all of eastern North Dakota, and their land in northeastern South Dakota. Most of the Pembina Anishinabek of North Dakota and South Dakota, were either forced to the White Earth Reservation or to Oklahoma, after the war ended.

Today, the Minnesota Pembina live on the Red Lake Reservation and White Earth Reservation in Minnesota. The Anishinabek of Red Lake Reservation and White Earth Reservation, are the descendants of the Pembina Anishinabek who fought the 1862 Minnesota Indian War. The Anishinabe who lived to their east, had ceded their land to the evil Americans years before the 1862 Pembina uprising, and were already living on their own Reservations, and very few of them participated in the 1862 Minnesota Anishinabe War.

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