‘Star Dreamer’ filmmaker Sheldon Wolfchild: Dakota perspective on pre-war events

MinnPost photo by Steve Date/Medicine Bottle photo courtesy of the Minnesota Historical Society
Documentarian Sheldon P. Wolfchild, left, and his ancestor, Medicine Bottle, who was executed by hanging in 1865 at Fort Snelling along with Little Six.

This is the first of several video reports offering perspectives of the events of 1862 in Minnesota, and the aftermath of the U.S.-Dakota War.

Sheldon P. Wolfchild has been researching the history of Dakota people in Minnesota and interviewing elders for 15 years in preparation for the documentary film he’s in the process of finishing this summer.  He calls it “Star Dreamers — the Spirit Water People.” The film weaves oral and written history and traditional Dakota beliefs together to offer a telling of the Dakota story in a way that the text books he grew up reading never did.

Wolfchild sat down with me at his home on the Lower Sioux Reservation in southwestern Minnesota, a couple of miles from the agency building where the first actual battle of the Dakota War took place on August 18, 1862. In my video interview, he talks about the events leading up to the war as seen through Dakota eyes.

Comments (1)

  1. Submitted by Sherice Cameron on 02/14/2014 - 05:18 pm.

    “Star Dreamer” Filmaker interview

    I found the MINNPOST online after reading the book “38 Nooses” by Scott Berg. Berg left out the 1865 hanging of Medicine Bottle and Little Six. I just want to say I am relieved that Medicine Bottle has a living grandchild today and I wish Mr. Wolfchild good luck with his film. I think it will be successful and I appreciate the Dakota perspective.

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