Return Coldwater Springs to the Dakota

  • by: Anpao Duta
  • recipient: Department of the Interior
We, the undersigned, demand the transfer of the former Bureau of Mines properties, including the historic Coldwater Spring, to Dakota communities.

Several Dakota communities have expressed an interest in the Coldwater Spring site. This site is included in the Bdewakantunwan creation story, which locates the Dakota place of genesis as the areas surrounding the juncture of the Minnesota and Mississippi Rivers. There is evidence that the site has been used as a ceremonial site for the Dakota and other native people both historically and contemporary.

We also demand an environmental restoration of the site by the Federal government before the transfer to Dakota communities. As the Federal government via the Bureau of Mines is responsible for the current state of the land surrounding the spring, it is their responsibility to restore the site to a pristine condition. This includes the removal of Bureau of Mines buildings and structures, a regrowth of the original oak savanna, and restoration of the area surrounding the spring and reservoir.  

A clean-up and restoration of the site is needed. However, a full restoration of the site means the restoration of Dakota rights and title to the land. Coldwater Spring must be returned to the people of the Dakota Nation, who are the rightful care takers and protectors of that land.

Full restoration of the site means the restoration of Dakota rights.  After 150 years of genocide, ethnic cleansing, and forced removal, return of surplus Federal and state land to Dakota people is the first step towards justice.
We, the undersigned, demand the transfer of the former Bureau of Mines properties, including the historic Coldwater Spring, to Dakota communities.

Several Dakota communities have expressed an interest in the Coldwater Spring site. This site is included in the Bdewakantunwan creation story, which locates the Dakota place of genesis as the areas surrounding the juncture of the Minnesota and Mississippi Rivers. There is evidence that the site has been used as a ceremonial site for the Dakota and other native people both historically and contemporary.

We also demand an environmental restoration of the site by the Federal government before the transfer to Dakota communities. As the Federal government via the Bureau of Mines is responsible for the current state of the land surrounding the spring, it is their responsibility to restore the site to a pristine condition. This includes the removal of Bureau of Mines buildings and structures, a regrowth of the original oak savanna, and restoration of the area surrounding the spring and reservoir.  

A clean-up and restoration of the site is needed. However, a full restoration of the site means the restoration of Dakota rights and title to the land. Coldwater Spring must be returned to the people of the Dakota Nation, who are the rightful care takers and protectors of that land.

Full restoration of the site means the restoration of Dakota rights.  After 150 years of genocide, ethnic cleansing, and forced removal, return of surplus Federal and state land to Dakota people is the first step towards justice.
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