In states such as Wyoming and the Dakotas the population is largely rural, and the deaths by lightning rise in consequence.
Before that time the St Paul had been a great local railway, operating primarily in the Dakotas, Minnesota, Iowa, Wisconsin and Illinois; but by the construction of a long arm from the Missouri river to Spokane, Seattle and Tacoma, it became a transcontinental line of the first importance, avoiding the mistakes of earlier railway builders by securing a line with easy gradients through the most favourable regions.
The first European visitors to the territory now embraced in the state of Minnesota found it divided between two powerful Indian tribes, the Ojibways or Chippewas, who occupied the heavily wooded northern portion and the region along the Mississippi river, and the Sioux or Dakotas, who made their homes on the more open rolling country in the south and west and in the valley of the Minnesota.
The derivation of Assiniboia is from two Ojibway words, assini meaning a stone, and the termination "to cook by roasting"; from these came a name first applied to a Dakota or Sioux tribe living on the Upper Red river; afterwards when this tribe separated from the Dakotas, its name was given to the branch of the Red river which the tribe visited, the river being known as the Assiniboine and the tribe as Assiniboin.
On the admission of Minnesota into the Union in 1858, the eastern section was again left unorganized until the 2nd of March 1861, when the territory of Dakota was created, including the present Dakotas and portions of Wyoming and Montana.
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