Black and white photograph of the restored Dakota mission of Stephen R. Riggs and Thomas S. Williamson at Lac qui Parle State Park, 1971. Photographed by Jack Renshaw.

Laq qui Parle mission

The restored Dakota mission of Stephen R. Riggs and Thomas S. Williamson at Lac qui Parle State Park, 1971. Photographed by Jack Renshaw.

Black and white photograph of Stephen R. Riggs, 1862. Photographed by Whitney’s Gallery.

Reverend Stephen Riggs

Stephen R. Riggs, 1862. Photographed by Whitney’s Gallery.

Riggs, Stephen Return (1812–1883)

Stephen Return Riggs was a Christian missionary and linguist who spent forty years in the Minnesota River Valley, Nebraska, and Dakota Territory. In both these roles, he aimed to “Christianize and civilize” the Dakota people he believed were caught in the “bonds of heathenism.” To further his project, he compiled the first printed dictionary of the Dakota language. Riggs’s work as a government translator and interpreter helped the United States remove the Dakota from their Minnesota homeland during the 1850s and 1860s.

Color image of a Hmong religious altar made, c.2005.

Hmong altar

Hmong religious altar made, c.2005. The altar includes Chinese money paper cut in snowflake patterns; a gong and stick; bells; a mask; incense holders; golden metal cups; a salad plate; a glass bowl; an animal horn; a turquoise cotton bag; and a black metal nonfunctional sword.

Color image of a Hmong American boy in traditional clothing. Photographed by Vue Xiong, c.1992.

Hmong boy

Hmong American boy in traditional clothing. Photographed by Vue Xiong, c.1992.

Black and white photograph of a Hmong wedding reception in St. Paul, 1981. Photographed by Michael Kieger.

Hmong wedding reception

Hmong wedding reception in St. Paul, 1981. Photographed by Michael Kieger.

Black and white photograph of Gertrude and Walter J. Hill standing in front of a Christmas tree at the James J. Hill house, 240 Summit, St. Paul, 1891.

Gertrude and Walter J. Hill standing in front of a Christmas tree

Gertrude and Walter J. Hill standing in front of a Christmas tree at the James J. Hill house, 240 Summit, St. Paul, 1891.

Black and white photograph of a drawing room decorated for Charlotte Hill's wedding to George T. Slade at the James J. Hill house, 240 Summit Avenue, St. Paul, 1901. Photographed by Charles A. Zimmerman.

Drawing room decorated for Charlotte Hill's wedding to George T. Slade

Drawing room decorated for Charlotte Hill's wedding to George T. Slade at the James J. Hill house, 240 Summit Avenue, St. Paul, 1901. Photographed by Charles A. Zimmerman.

Black and white photograph of the Gertrude Hill–Michael Gavin wedding party in the James J. Hill House drawing room, 1906. Photographer: T.W. Ingersoll.

Gertrude Hill–Michael Gavin wedding party

Gertrude Hill–Michael Gavin wedding party in the James J. Hill House drawing room, 1906. Photographed by T.W. Ingersoll.

Black and white photograph of Mary T. and James J. Hill with Cardinal Vannutelli, a Papal delegate, on the Hill House veranda, 1910.

Mary T. and James J. Hill with Cardinal Vannutelli

Mary T. and James J. Hill with Cardinal Vannutelli, a Papal delegate, on the Hill House veranda, 1910.

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