Mankato Spoon

The Case:

A woman in Portland, Oregon has a curious spoon that once belonged to her grandmother. It's known in her family as "the spoon of atrocities.”

An eerie scene is etched into its sterling silver bowl: wagons, buildings and a crowd of spectators gathered before a gallows with figures hanging from them. A disturbing message is inscribed: "Hanging 38 Sioux In 1862 Mankato, Minn.”

What is this tragic scene, and why has it been etched into what looks like a collectible, commemorative spoon?

History Detectives explores the clash between white settlers and the Dakota Sioux in the mid nineteenth-century - and a struggle that led to the largest mass execution in American history.

Discuss this story

Season 6, Episode 8

Wes Cowan Location:
Mankato, New Ulm and Minneapolis, Minnesota

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