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This year, the Red Wing Heritage Preservation Commission will be presenting on Award of Merit to the City of Red Wing and the Sheldon Board for the recently-completed renovation of the T. B. Sheldon Memorial Auditorium. The event will take place at the Sheldon Theatre; doors open at 6 p.m. for seating and the program begins at 6:30 p.m. After a brief welcome by the HPC, the Award of Merit will be presented.
Beginning at approximately 6:45 p.m., the first of two speakers, Dr. Ronald Schirmer, will present "On the importance of this place: Ancestral Native American sites in Red Wing and their continuing relevance." There is abundant evidence of the importance of the Red Wing region in Native people's lives going back thousands of years. Many of their ancestral sites have been disturbed and destroyed, and more than a century ago most of the landscape was alienated from Native groups, but many other sites remain, and the region is still an important part of Native identity. Respecting, preserving, and interpreting the deep history of this place is about more than laws and ordinances, it is about maintaining an ethical and humane approach to history.
After a 10-15 minute intermission, the program will proceed with Dr. Michelle Terrell sharing discoveries made during archaeological investigations prompted by the construction of a new bridge over the Mississippi River at Red Wing. Through this presentation, learn about the history of Red Wing: how the city’s landscape has dramatically changed over time; how archaeologists do their work; and what the artifacts found tell us about living and working in Red Wing from the late 1800s through the 1950s.
Each presentation will last approximately 45 minutes and allow Q&A afterward.
Dr. Schirmer is a Professor of Anthropology, Director of the Archeology Division of the Museum of Anthropology, and Co-Director of the Archeology, Geography, and Earth Science (AGES) Laboratory at Minnesota State Mankato. He has been researching the archeology and Native history of the Red Wing area for more than two decades. He works closely with many Native American groups across the Midwest to help build a collaborative approach to identifying and preserving ancestral sites. In addition, he is directing a major effort to build a statewide geospatial reference system collating the archeological holdings of public and private repositories.
Dr. Michelle Terrell has over 25 years of professional experience conducting archaeological and historical studies in Minnesota and the Upper Midwest. Her completed projects range from the study of a Native American fishing camp near Bemidji to the investigation of the remains of a steam-powered sawmill in Stillwater. Dr. Terrell’s research focuses on the relationship between cultural traditions, the documentary record, and archaeological evidence. She is co-owner of Two Pines Resource Group, a cultural resources management firm that assists both public and private clients with their compliance and permitting needs.