"The Fight Was On"

"The Fight Was On" (HM1CV8)

Location: Morton, MN 56270 Renville County
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Country: United States of America
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N 44° 34.6', W 94° 58.765'

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"One of the sentinels fired. The shot was followed by a heavy volley from the Indians, which...killed and wounded several of our men and the fight was on."
??? ??? ??? ??? ??? ??? ??? ??? ??? ??? ??? Joseph Anderson

Early on the morning of September 2, a U.S. guard sensed movement in the grass and fired a warning shot. Dakota men immediately returned fire.

"I scrambled out of my tent on my hands and knees," Anderson recalled, "and at the top of my voice...shouted to the men to 'keep low'—grab their arms—get to the front line of the camp—and hold back the Indians."

Two Views of the Battle

Anderson reported that men under his command shielded themselves behind overturned wagons and dead horses during the battle. Grant's men, Anderson recalled, jumped to their feet when the battle started. Wamditanka saw them: "The white men stood up and exposed themselves at first, but at last they learned to keep quiet."

Some of the U.S. soldiers had seen action before, but many were new recruits. The force also included many civilian volunteers without battle experience.

Minnesota Historical Society
Birch Coulee Battlefield
HM NumberHM1CV8
Placed ByThe Minnesota Historical Society
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Wednesday, October 8th, 2014 at 2:35pm PDT -07:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)15T E 342846 N 4937830
Decimal Degrees44.57666667, -94.97941667
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 44° 34.6', W 94° 58.765'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds44° 34' 36.00" N, 94° 58' 45.90" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)507
Closest Postal AddressAt or near 2-62 Co Hwy 18, Morton MN 56270, US
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