April 2, 2023
Mattie Harper
Dr. Mattie Harper. (photo courtesy UC San Diego)

ST. PAUL, Minn. (Dec. 21, 2016) — The Minnesota Historical Society welcomes Dr. Mattie Harper as a program and outreach manager working with the new American Indian Initiatives team, beginning January 2017.

An enrolled member of the Bois Forte Band of Ojibwe Indians, Harper earned a doctorat in Ethnic Studies from the University of California — Berkeley and is a historian of the Great Lakes region of North America, U.S. settler colonialism and Native American women and gender. Most recently Harper served as an assistant professor at UC San Diego in the Ethnic Studies department.

“I have deep personal and professional ties to Minnesota. I’m currently writing a book about the Bonga family in Minnesota, of which I am a descendant, that examines Ojibwe and Dakota history in the 19th century and the process of Minnesota statehood,” Harper said. “I hope to use my professional background and training to help deepen the Society’s engagement with Ojibwe communities in meaningful and mutually beneficial ways.”

Harper is the second Gale Fellow appointment and joins Program and Outreach Manager Dr. Kate Beane and Director Joe Horse Capture on the American Indian Initiatives team. MNHS created the team to help develop a vision and strategy for American Indian programs and services in collaboration with American Indian communities throughout the state and beyond.

The Minnesota Historical Society is a non-profit educational and cultural institution established in 1849. MNHS collects, preserves and tells the story of Minnesota’s past through museum exhibits, libraries and collections, historic sites, educational programs and book publishing. Using the power of history to transform lives, MNHS preserves our past, shares our state’s stories and connects people with history. Visit us at mnhs.org.

The Minnesota Historical Society is supported in part by its Premier Partners: Xcel Energy and Explore Minnesota Tourism.

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