In the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, job prospects in farming and on railroads drew the first Indian immigrants—mostly men—from Asia to the United States. It wasn’t until the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965, however, that Minnesota officially opened its doors to Indians.
In 1881, John Sweetman brought forty-three immigrant families to farms near Currie and established the Sweetman Catholic Colony. Another nineteen families joined the colony in 1882, but two unseasonably wet growing seasons made farming difficult. By the end of 1882, half of the colonists had abandoned their farms and left the colony.