By Kate Raddatz

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) –  When public perception of the Native history often ties to tragedy, historians at the Minnesota History Center chose to showcase the Natives’ resilience in a new exhibit.

“We really wanted to be positive in that sense and just show the strength and diversity and really the humanity,” explained Minnesota History Center senior historian Mattie DeCarlo.

Thousands of pieces are on display in the new exhibit, titled “Our Home: Native Minnesota.”

It took a year and a half of digging up history, as historians gathered input from an Indian Advisory Committee and the Dakota Community Council.

“Today there’s a lot of people divided and what we’re trying to do is to help develop some cultural empathy,” explained Ben Gessner, Collections Curator.

The exhibit uses photographs, clothing, and maps to show the Ojibwe and Dakota relationships throughout history and their connections to Minnesota land. But there is also a reminder that Native people are still connected to their culture.

“For each of the section panels we have Dakota, Ojibwe and English so this is a trilingual exhibit,” Gessner said,

Museum officials hope people come away with a new understanding of the teachings and values of Native culture.

The exhibit opens to the public on Saturday.

Admission to the Minnesota History Center will also be free that day only. For more information click here.

Kate Raddatz