SIBLEY, Henry Hastings (1811-1891)

SIBLEY, HENRY HASTINGS, (son of Solomon Sibley), a Delegate from the Territories of Wisconsin and Minnesota; born in Detroit, Mich., February 20, 1811; attended the Detroit Academy and also studied under private tutors; studied law; moved to Sault Ste. Marie in 1828 and engaged in mercantile pursuits until 1829, when he moved to Mackinac and entered the service of the American Fur Co.; justice of the peace in 1831; moved to the mouth of the Minnesota River in 1834 and engaged in fur trading; elected as a Delegate from the Territory of Wisconsin to the Thirtieth Congress to fill the vacancy caused by the disqualification of John H. Tweedy and served from October 30, 1848, to March 3, 1849; upon the formation of the Territory of Minnesota was elected as a Delegate to the Thirty-first and Thirty-second Congresses and served from July 7, 1849, to March 3, 1853; declined to be a candidate for renomination; member of the Territorial Legislature of Minnesota in 1855; member of the constitutional convention of Minnesota in 1857, and served as president; Governor of Minnesota 1858-1860; regent of the State university 1860-1869 and president of the board of regents 1876-1891; served in the Union Army as brigadier general of Volunteers from 1862 until he was honorably mustered out April 30, 1866; moved to St. Paul, Minn.; interested in banking, railroads, and other public corporations; president of the St. Paul Gas Co. in 1866; president of the Minnesota Historical Society 1879-1891; unsuccessful candidate for election to the Forty-seventh Congress; appointed by President Arthur in 1883 as president of the commission to settle damage claims of the Ojibway Indians resulting from the construction of national reservoirs; died in St. Paul, Minn., February 18, 1891; interment in Oakland Cemetery.

Minnesota Historical Society
St. Paul, MN
Papers: 1815-1930, 22 cubic feet.
The papers of Henry Hastings Sibley include correspondence, a diary, financial and business records, military vouchers, and other documents, relating to Indians, the frontier, fur trade, lumbering, and politics. Most of the papers are available on microfilm. A published guide for the papers is available in the repository..

Papers: In the Charles P. Adams Papers, 1861-1921, 87 items.
Correspondents include Henry Hastings Sibley.

Papers: In the Henry S. Baird Papers, 1825-1861, 1 folder.
Other authors include Henry H. Sibley.

Papers: In the Luther L. Baxter and Family Papers, 1853-1950, 1 cubic foot.
Other authors include Henry Hastings Sibley. An inventory for the papers is available in the repository.

Papers: In the Charles H. Berry and Family Papers, 1846-1943, 1.25 cubic feet.
Other authors include Henry Hastings Sibley. An inventory for the papers is available in the repository.

Microfilm: In the Joseph R. and Samuel J. Brown and Family Papers, 1826-1956, 30 microfilm reels.
Other authors include Henry Hastings Sibley.

Papers: In the Solon J. Buck Papers, ca. 1902-1960, 5.75 cubic feet.
Subjects include Henry Hastings Sibley. An inventory for the papers is available in the repository.

Microfilm: In the Catholic Church in St. Boniface, Manitoba Correspondence, 1861-1868, 1 microfilm reel.
Correspondents include Henry Hastings Sibley. An inventory for the papers is available in the repository.

Papers: In the Charles T. Cavileer Papers, 1849-1929, 21 items.
Correspondents include Henry Hastings Sibley. An inventory for the papers is available in the repository.

Papers: In the Chambers and Johnson Family Papers, 1827-1942, 1.5 cubic feet.
Other authors include Henry Hastings Sibley. A box list for the papers is available in the repository.

Papers: In the Pierre Chouteau and Family Papers, 1799-1850, 65 items.
Correspondents include Henry Hastings Sibley. An inventory for the papers is available in the repository.

Papers: In the Judson Newell Cross Papers, 1861-1907, 1.25 cubic feet.
Other authors include Henry Hastings Sibley. An inventory for the papers is available in the repository.

Papers: In the Democratic National Convention (1860 : Charleston, S.C. and Baltimore, Md.) Minutes of Baltimore Credentials Committee, undated and 1860 June 19, 17 pages.
Persons represented include Henry Hastings Sibley.

Papers: In the Hercules L. Dousman Papers, ca. 1808-1903, 5.5 cubic feet.
Correspondents include Henry Hastings Sibley. An inventory for the papers is available in the repository.

Papers: In the First Presbyterian Church (Minneapolis, Minn.) Parish Record Books, 1835-1871, 2 volumes.
Persons represented include Henry Hastings Sibley.

Papers: In the Pierce Powers Furber Family Genealogical Data and Papers, 1841-1997, 0.25 cubic feet.
Correspondents include Henry Hastings Sibley. An inventory for the papers is available in the repository.

Microfilm: In the Frank N. Gauthier Note, 1862, 1 leaf on partial microfilm reel.
A note from Frank Gauthier, of Captain Mark Hendrick's Battery of Light Artillery, to General Henry H. Sibley, written on December 15, 1862. In the note, Gauthier offers his services to hang the Dakota Indians convicted of murder following the Dakota Conflict.

Papers: In the Ellen R. Hollinshead Reminiscences, 1892, 1 folder.
Persons represented include Henry Hastings Sibley.

Papers: In the Benjamin Lacy Letters, 1858, 1919. 9 items.
Persons represented include Henry Hastings Sibley.

Papers: In the Lorenzo Lawrence Papers, 1861-1960, 5 items in 1 folder.
Persons represented include Henry Hastings Sibley.

Papers: In the William G. Le Duc and Family Papers, 1760-1967, 61 cubic feet.
Other authors include Henry Hastings Sibley. A container list for the papers is available in the repository.

Papers: In the Robert Todd Lincoln Papers, 1859-1865, 55 items.
Other authors include Henry Hastings Sibley.

Papers: In the Bushrod W. Lott Correspondence, 1849-1855, 13 items.
Correspondents include Henry Hastings Sibley.

Papers: In the Frank B. Mayer Papers, 1851-1903, 0.75 cubic feet.
Other authors include Henry Hastings Sibley. An inventory for the papers is available in the repository.

Papers: In the A. R. McGill and Family Papers, 1794-1931, 4.5 cubic feet.
Other authors include Henry Hastings Sibley. An inventory for the papers is available in the repository.

Papers: In the Martin McLeod Papers, 1830-1883, 1.25 cubic feet.
Correspondents include Henry Hastings Sibley. An inventory for the papers is available in the repository.

Papers: In the Mdewakanton Band of Dakota Indians List of recipients of federal funds, 1885, 2 items.
Persons represented include Henry Hastings Sibley.

Papers: In the Minnesota District Court (Washington County) Records, 1851, 1 item..
A bill of complaint in Chouteau et al. vs. Rice et al., 1851 May 8. Other authors include Henry Hastings Sibley.

Papers: Minnesota Governor Executive Journals, 1849-1858, 2 volumes.
Correspondents include Henry Hastings Sibley.

Papers: In the Minnesota Governor Records, 1858-1859, 1 cubic foot.
The collection includes the gubernatorial records of Henry Hastings Sibley, while he was governor of Minnesota. The records contain accounting records, appointment records, records concerning charges against public officials, letters received, attorney general's opinions, and records relating to pardons and reprieves. Also included are poll books from Goodhue, LeSueur, McLeod, and Rice counties documenting the election for the first two amendments to the state constitution (April 15, 1858), as well as accounts of the state's salt lands commission. There is also substantial correspondence concerning railroads. A file list for the records is available in the repository.

Papers: In the Minutes and Stock Records, 1857-1859, 2 volumes.
Persons represented include Henry H. Sibley.

Papers: In the William Pitt Murray and Family Papers, 1836-1944, 2.25 cubic feet.
Correspondents include Henry Hastings Sibley. An inventory for the papers is available in the repository.

Papers: In the John Nicols and Family Papers, 1818-1873, 0.4 cubic foot.
Other authors include Henry Hastings Sibley. An inventory for the papers is available in the repository.

Papers: In the William Cox Pope and Family Papers, 1858-1976, 2 cubic feet.
Other authors include Henry Hastings Sibley. An inventory for the papers is available in the repository.

Papers: In the Ramsey County Pioneer Association Records, 1871-1886, 89 items.
Other authors include Henry Hastings Sibley. An inventory for the papers is available in the repository.

Microfilm: In the Recommendation of Wounded Man (Ta-o-pe), 1862, 1 item.
States that Ta-o-pe is a civilized Dakota who aided the whites during the Dakota Conflict.

Papers: In the Records of Company F, 1862-1863, 1 volume.
The Rangers, commanded by Colonel Samuel McPhail, accompanied General Henry H. Sibley on his punitive expedition against the Dakota in 1863.

Papers: In the Stephen R. Riggs and Family Papers, 1837-1958, 1.75 cubic feet.
Other authors include Henry Hastings Sibley. An inventory for the papers is available in the repository.

Papers: In the Daniel A. Robertson and Family Papers, 1814-1933, 1 cubic foot.
Correspondents include Henry Hastings Sibley. An inventory for the papers is available in the repository.

Papers: In the Selected Land Records Relating to Henry Hastings Sibley, Alexander Faribault, and Pierre Chouteau, Jr., 1854-1922, 1 folder.
Persons represented include Henry Hastings Sibley.

Papers: In the Rollin L. Smith Papers, [undated] and 1938-1941, 0.5 cubic foot.
Persons represented include Henry Hastings Sibley.

Papers: In the St. Paul's Church-on-the-Hill (Saint Paul, Minn.) Records, 1874-1988, 3.25 cubic feet.
Other authors include Henry Hastings Sibley. A container list for the papers is available in the repository.

Papers: In the John Steele and Family Papers, ca. 1780-1883, 0.25 cubic feet.
Correspondents include Henry Hastings Sibley.

Papers: In the John H. Stevens Papers, 1839-1889, 1.25 cubic feet.
Correspondents include Henry Hastings Sibley. An inventory for the papers is available in the repository.

Microfilm: In the James Wickes Taylor Papers, 1834-1957, 11 microfilm reels.
Other authors include Henry Hastings Sibley.

Papers: In the John H. Thurston Papers, 1860-1880, 20 items.
Correspondents include Henry Hastings Sibley.

Microfilm: In the U.S. Army Continental Commands Records, Daily Journal of the Sibley Expedition, 1863, 1 microfilm reel.
The journal appears to be the official daily log of Henry H. Sibley's 1863 punitive expedition against the Dakota Indians from the time it left Camp Pope in Renville County, Minnesota, on June 16, until it returned to Fort Snelling on September 10. The journal was kept by an unspecified member of the expedition, but was frequently annotated in Henry H. Sibley's hand. The original journal is in the National Archives and Records Administration, Record Group 393.

Papers: In the U.S. Department of Interior Indian Division Records, 1848-1901, 0.75 cubic foot.
Other authors include Henry Hastings Sibley. An inventory for the papers is available in the repository.

Microfilm: In the U.S. Office of Indian Affairs, 1824-1880, 274 microfilm reels.
Other authors include Henry Hastings Sibley. The original papers are in the National Archives and Records Administration.

Microfilm: In the U.S. Office of Indian Affairs, Letters Received, St. Peters, 1837, 1 microfilm reel.
Other authors include Henry Hastings Sibley. The original papers are in the National Archives and Records Administration.

Papers: In the Horatio P. Van Cleve and Family Papers, 1827-1970, 13.5 cubic feet.
Other authors include Henry Hastings Sibley. An inventory for the papers is available in the repository.

Papers: In the Whipple-Scandrett Family Papers, 1829-1959, 4.5 cubic feet.
Other authors include Henry Hastings Sibley. An inventory for the papers is available in the repository.


Brooklyn Historical Society
Brooklyn, NY
Papers: April 20, 1850. 1 letter.
Finding aid in repository.


Huntington Library
Manuscripts Department
San Marino, CA
Papers: In the Alexander H. Sibley Papers, 1821-1855, 25 items.
Correspondents include Henry Hastings Sibley.


The Morgan Library
Department of Literary and Historical Manuscripts
New York, NY
Papers: 1853, 1 item.
A letter from Henry Hastings Sibley to William R. Marcy, written on March 21, 1853. In the letter, Henry Hastings recommends Andrew G. Chatfield for the office of Justice of the Supreme Court of Minnesota Territory.


Northwestern University Libraries
Special Collections Department
Evanston, IL
Papers: 1863, 1 volume.
Persons represented include Henry Hastings Sibley.


State Historical Society of North Dakota
Bismarck, ND
Papers: In the James W. Taylor Papers, ca. 1834-1957, 42 items and 10 microfilm reels.
Correspondents include Henry Hastings Sibley.

Papers: In the George Bailey Winship Papers, ca. 1922, 0.25 feet.
Subjects include Henry Hastings Sibley.


University of Chicago
William E. Barton Collection of Lincolniana
Chicago, IL
Papers: 1862, 1 item.
A letter from Henry Hastings Sibley to the Headquarters of the Department of the Northwest written on December 30, 1862. In the letter, Henry Hastings Sibley requests that the 3rd Regiment of Minnesota Volunteers be furnished with Springfield muskets and be placed in the command of Major General Rosecrans.


University of Wisconsin
River Falls Area Research Center
River Falls, WI
Microfilm: 1826-1848, 1 reel.
This collection includes papers of Minnesota's first governor, Henry Hastings Sibley, during his years as a fur trader, consisting primarily of correspondence among the various American Fur Company agents located in the Wisconsin Territory. The original papers are at the Minnesota Historical Society.


Vaughn Public Library
Ashland, WI
Microfilm: 1826-1848, 1 reel.
This collection includes papers of Minnesota's first governor, Henry Hastings Sibley, during his years as a fur trader, consisting primarily of correspondence among the various American Fur Company agents located in the Wisconsin Territory. The original papers are at the Minnesota Historical Society.


Yale University
Western Americana Collection, Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library
New Haven, CT
Papers: In the Lambert A. Martin Letters and Diary, 1861-1863, 64 items.
Subjects covered include Henry Hastings Sibley.

  • Carley, Kenneth. "The Sioux Campaign of 1862: Sibley's Letters to His Wife." Minnesota History 38 (September 1962): 99-114.
  • Flanagan, John T. "Big Game Hunter, Henry H. Sibley." Minnesota History 41 (Spring 1969): 217-28.
  • Gilman, Rhoda R. Henry Hastings Sibley: Divided Heart. St. Paul: Minnesota Historical Society Press, 2004.
  • Gilman, Rhoda R. "How Henry Sibley Took the Road to New Hope." Minnesota History 52 (Summer 1991): 220-29.
  • Gray, James. "Two Leaders of the Old Northwest: Hercules Dousman and Henry Sibley." Wisconsin Magazine of History 29 (March 1946): 263-80.
  • Jorstad, Erling T. "The Life of Henry Hastings Sibley." Ph.D. diss., University of Wisconsin, 1957.
  • Shortridge, Wilson P. "The Transition of a Typical Frontier, With Illustration From the Life of Henry Hastings Sibley, Fur Trader, First Delegate in Congress from Minnesota Territory, and First Governor of the State of Minnesota." Ph.D. diss., University of Minnesota, 1919.
  • ------. The transition of a typical frontier, with illustrations from the life of Henry Hastings Sibley, fur trader, first delegate in Congress from Minnesota Territory and first governor of the state Minnesota. [Menasha, Wis.: George Banta Publishing Company, 1922].
  • Sibley, Henry H. Address delivered before the Minnesota Historical Society, at its sixth anniversary, February 1st, 1856. St. Paul: N.p., 1856.
  • ------. Memoir of Hercules L. Dousman. N.p., 1880.
  • ------. Memoir of Jean Baptiste Faribault. N.p., 1880.
  • ------. Reminiscences; historical and personal. St. Paul: N.p., 1872.
  • ------. "Reminiscences of the Early Days of Minnesota." In Collections of the Minnesota Historical Society, vol. 3, part 2. St. Paul: Saint Paul Press Company, 1874.
  • ------. Reminiscences of the Early Days of Minnesota. N.p., 1880.
  • ------. Sketch of the life of Nicollet. St. Paul: N.p., 1853.
  • ------. The Unfinished Autobiography of Henry Hastings Sibley, together with a selection of hitherto unpublished letters from the thirties. Edited by Theodore C. Blegen. Minneapolis, Minn.: The Voyageur Press, F. T. Phelps, 1932.
  • West, Nathaniel. The ancestry, life, and times of Hon. Henry Hastings Sibley by Nathaniel West. Saint Paul, Minn.: Pioneer Press, 1889.
  • Williams, J. Fletcher (John Fletcher). Henry Hastings Sibley: A memoir. N.p., 1894.