Henry Hastings Sibley, Governor, Maj. General (USA)

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Henry Hastings Sibley, Governor, Maj. General (USA)

Birthplace: Detroit, Wayne, MI
Death: Died in Prob. Saint Paul, Ramsey, MN
Place of Burial: Oakland Cemetery, Saint Paul, Ramsey, MN
Immediate Family:

Son of Solomon Sibley, Judge and Sarah Whipple Sproat
Husband of Sarah J. Steele and Unknown Sioux Woman
Father of ?? Sibley
Brother of Ebenezer Sproat Sibley, Col; Catherine Trowbridge; Alexander Hamilton Sibley; Sarah Alexandrine Sibley; Frederick Baker Sibley and 3 others

Managed by: Private User
Last Updated:

About Henry Hastings Sibley, Governor, Maj. General (USA)


Henry Hastings Sibley (20 February 1811-February 18, 1891), was the first Governor of the U.S. state of Minnesota. was born in Detroit, Michigan on February 20, 1811. During the Civil War, he was assigned to defend the western frontier against American Indians.

In 1862, after the American Civil War began, Sibley was appointed colonel of the state militia. He was directed to the upper Minnesota River to protect exposed settlements from the Sioux American Indians. After the massacre at Acton, August 18, 1862, he was involved in the following engagements:

The Battle of New Ulm The Battle of Fort Ridgely The Battle of Birch Coulee The Battle of Wood Lake

The last engagement was a decisive battle. It resulted in Sioux bands' releasing about 250 captive whites. In the action, the militia captured 2,000 Sioux, both men and women. Of these captives, 321 warriors were tried for capital crimes and 303 were sentenced to death. Thirty-eight men were hanged at Mankato, December 26, 1862.

For "gallantry in the field", Sibley was promoted to brigadier-general of volunteers, September 29, 1862. He established his headquarters at St. Paul and created a new military department, which included Minnesota, Dakota Territory, Iowa, and Wisconsin. He fortified the large territory with posts and garrisons. In 1863, he led a second successful expedition against the Sioux in Dakota Territory. This campaign included the battles of Big Mound (July 24), Dead Buffalo Lake (July 26), and Stony Lake (July 28).

Sibley continued to defend the western frontier, 1864 – 1865. On November 29, 1865, he was brevetted as major-general of the volunteers for "efficient and meritorious services." He was relieved from the command of the district of Minnesota in August 1866 after the end of the American Civil War.

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Henry Hastings Sibley, Governor, Maj. General (USA)'s Timeline

February 20, 1811
Detroit, Wayne, MI
February 18, 1891
Age 79
Prob. Saint Paul, Ramsey, MN
Oakland Cemetery, Saint Paul, Ramsey, MN