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This photo provided by archaeologist Michelle Terrell shows where Terrell and co-workers excavated a rifle pit near the obelisk at the Wood Lake Monument site in eastern Yellow Medicine County. It is described as a defensive trench used by soldiers to protect the camp of Colonel Henry Sibley during the U.S.-Dakota War of 1862. (Submitted photo)

Archaeological work at Wood Lake Monument locates site of rifle pit, old agency road

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WOOD LAKE — As the final battle of the U.S.-Dakota War of 1862 raged about them, soldiers with Minnesota’s 3rd Regiment just returned from fighting the Confederates stood ready in a trench to protect the camp Colonel Henry Sibley had made on the open prairie.


Recently, a portion of that defensive trench re-appeared on the prairie.

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Tom Cherveny
Tom Cherveny is a regional and outdoor reporter with the West Central Tribune in Willmar, MN.
(320) 214-4335