Prairie Island, Minnesota
Prairie Island, in northwestern Minnesota is Mdewakanton
Dakota (Sioux) Indian Reservation land.
The landscape is
natural Pine forests, deciduous woodlands, native tallgrass
prairie, aspen parkland, sand dunes (remnants of Glacial Lake Agassiz),
calcareous fens, bogs, marshes, large and small lakes and rivers
make up the transition zone that offers safe haven for well
over 275 species of birds. It carries many Dakota legends.
According to Jim Anderson of the Republican Eagle
in Red Wing, Minnesota a Native American by the name of "Running Wolf" was
sitting in his living room at 9:30 p.m. when his dogs began barking. Looking
out the window, he saw a big "shadow or shape." He thought "somebody's
messing with my car." He found two 18-inch-long human-looking footprints on
his driveway. One became obscured in soft sand, but the other had five
distinct toes. Indians call it Cee-ha-tonka, "The Big Man." The Big Man has
been around for centuries according to Dwight Wells, a neighbor.
to legend, the Big Man usually appears around Indian communities that are
having problems a sign is left behind after the appearance, a footprint,
strong scent, tuft of hair, or large broken tree limbs.
Ralph Gray Wolf, a
visiting Alaskan spiritual leader, says the Big Man helps troubled
communities to get back in tune with nature and gain spiritual energy and
inner strength. With the renewal comes the ability to face the difficulties.
Gray Wolf pointed out that scientists have tried to debunk the evidence of
the existence of Big Man, but haven't been able to do so.
Story source: Maria Little Bear, Welch, Minnesota.