Artists depict Wounded Knee massacre, occupationSIOUX FALLS — Jerry Fogg was just a teenager when he was handed a gun and told to help guard the South Dakota town of Wounded Knee during one of the most public displays of protest by the American Indian Movement nearly four decades ago.
By: KRISTI EATON, The Associated Press
SIOUX FALLS — Jerry Fogg was just a teenager when he was handed a gun and told to help guard the South Dakota town of Wounded Knee during one of the most public displays of protest by the American Indian Movement nearly four decades ago.
For three days, Fogg joined about 200 Oglala Sioux members and their followers as they occupied and seized the town for 71 days.
“It felt like you were guarding a president,” the Yankton Sioux tribal member who now resides in Sioux Falls recalled. “I was told if I was to fire, I was to fire over everyone’s head.”
Fogg is one of nearly 25 artists — both Native and non-Native — from around the country displaying their artwork at Augustana College’s Center for Western Studies in Sioux Falls as part of a first---kind art exhibit and show.
“Interpretations of Wounded Knee 1973 and 1890” is meant to help foster understanding and build stronger relationships between Natives and non-Natives as the 40th anniversary of the Wounded Knee takeover approaches, said Timothy Hoheisel, director of Outreach and Promotion at The Center for Western Studies.
In 1890, the U.S. Army killed Miniconjou Lakota chief Spotted Elk, also known as Big Foot, and 300 of his followers, including women and children, on the banks of the Wounded Knee Creek
“I didn’t do anything to Jerry Fogg. My ancestors basically killed his ancestors,” said Hoheisel, referring to the 1890 massacre. “By us coming together with this exhibit, there’s a chance for reconciliation.”
The exhibit is a prelude to the annual Dakota Conference, which brings together professional and amateur historians and researchers to present papers on a particular topic relevant to Northern Plains history. The theme for this year’s conference is “Wounded Knee 1973: Forty Years Later.” The event, scheduled for April 27-28, is bringing together all sides from the occupation — former American Indian Movement members, federal agents and prosecutors, and journalists and bystanders who witnessed the uprising.
“This one has a bit of an edge to it, as we anticipated it would,” said Harry Thompson, executive director for The Center for Western Studies.
This is the first time in the conference’s 44-year history that there has been an art show to go along with the conference. Hoheisel said it fit well with this year’s theme.
The exhibit, which runs through May 26, includes twodimensional and three-dimensional pieces in various art forms.