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Menomonie take over of Gresham Alexian novitiate in twentieth day

Jan 20, 1975
Kevin McKiernan, Ada Deer

Occupation of the Gresham novitiate in twentieth day. Issues and demands of indians inside are starting to escalate. At this point 350 National Guardsmen surround the abbey. Tensions remain high. In towns near the reservation famlies supporting occupiers have had phones disconnected. There are charges of racial prejudice. There's public unease, racial epithets, and angry whites displaying guns. Shono residents are mad at prolongation of takeover. Despite Alexians not wanting to press charges DA says multiple prosecutions will be made. A department store plays CB radios; John Birch literature's at gas stations. Menomonie Restoration Committee leader Ada Deer says ?we?re sensitive to the frustrations and tribal members in the novitiate? Working together is necessary, let?s not fight among ourselves. We need all the help we can get. This includes the Warrior Society and the American Indian Movement.? Possession of abbey appears as a vehicle for exposing problesms seething for many years. The standoff remains with no word as to acceptance or rejection to sell for $700,000 in return for peaceful vacation of novitiate. Government office has not responded to the latest Warrior Society amnesty request.