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Sunday, June 5, 2011

Thief River and Chief Mons-o-mo (Chief Moose Dung)

City of Thief River makes changes to cover up Name??????
This has been bothering me for some time and I have questions that I cannot find answers for and I hope someone who sees this may post an answer. I love history and I love Native American history and with great respect for those who have passed before us I would like to shed light on something that maybe is not quite accurate. The picture on the left according to what is written on the base of the Statue is of Chief Red Robe. Now Chief (Mis-co-co-noy-a) Red Robe was a real Chief and the Picture the writing on the statue base is correct, but the likeness is of Chief Mons-o-mo (Chief Moose-dung, translated). This name unfortunately brings giggles to small minded people. I have no idea why he had such a name but the culture of Natives Americans and other in that time period was different than today. The reason I know this is the likeness of Chief Mons-0-mo is because the statue was modeled after the photograph shown below which is of Chief Mons-o-mo.

There is also another photo that I found that was scanned from a post card that dates maybe back to the 50's or 60's. I am not certain of this time period or where this statue was at in the City of Thief River Falls when the photo was taken, but it certainly was a different color. What ever the reason prudishness or political correctness this should corrected out of respect for those involved, but I doubt it ever will.

The Statue of Chief Red Robe can be found just south of the Red Lake River Fishing Pier off of Highway 1 near Northland Community Technical College in a very nice park at the point where the Thief River joins the Red Lake River. It is worth the time to stop and take a look.


  1. See my articles here to clear up any confusion:

    I explain the mixup on the part of the TRF authorities both in the original statue plaque and in the revised one. David

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  3. The Statue was erected in the late '70's if I remember correctly. The Politically Correct repainting (to "Red Robe") was done by Orville Ellingson a local craftsman (and my former neighbor) who passed away on March 28th, 2016 -Brent Waale Thief River Falls lifelong resident.