5 oz. Pure Silver Coloured Coin – Wanduta: Portrait of a Chief – Mintage: 1,200 (2016)

$ 519.95

In stock


As a spiritual healer, Wanduta was a leading defender of traditional Indigenous practices. He travelled to Ottawa to protest the federal government’s restrictive policies; but upon his return, Wanduta was arrested for “hosting” the dance in Rapid City and was convicted for this violation of the giveaway ban. On January 26, 1903, he was sentenced to four months of hard labour and imprisonment at the Brandon Jail. Attempts to secure clemency proved futile as Wanduta served his entire sentence, but he remained undeterred. He continued his spiritual practices after his release; in doing so, Wanduta cemented his reputation as a heyoka, a respected member of sacred Dakota societies,who was revered for his abilities to help his people, and is remembered today for his efforts to keep tradition alive.

Your coin commemorates one person’s courage and dedication to preserving the cultural traditions of his community. Order your coin today!

Special features:
  • BEAUTIFUL COLOUR AND ENGRAVING! The full application of colour over the engraving captures the beautiful complexities of Wanduta’s traditional regalia, circa 1913.
  • LOW MINTAGE: Only 1,200 coins will be made worldwide.
  • KING GEORGE III MEDAL WORN AROUND HIS NECK! Around the spiritual healer’s neck is a King George III medal—a symbolic display of a Dakota leader’s peaceful intentions and a reminder of the historic alliances with the British.
  • FIVE OUNCES OF 99.99% PURE SILVER! Your coin is GST/HST exempt!
About the Design:

Designed by Canadian artist Darlene Gait, your coin features a full-face portrait of Wanduta (Red Arrow), a Sioux Valley Dakota Chief who defended the community’s ceremonial dance rites when such activities were prohibited under the Indian Act. The full application of colour over the engraving captures the beautiful complexities of Wanduta’s traditional regalia, circa 1913. Finely detailed engraving adds texture to the eagle feathers that adorn the full headdress, as well as the beautifully coloured beads that are woven in a geometric design on the headband above Wanduta’s brow.

Did you know…
  • In 1902, organizers of the annual summer fair in Rapid City, Manitoba, had arranged for a presentation of a ceremonial dance by the Sioux Valley Dakota Nation of the Oak River area. Known as a Grass Dance or a Give-Away Dance, a portion of the ritual included an exchange of gifts such as blankets or horses—a violation of the 1895 amendment to the Indian Act, which specifically prohibited ceremonial practices that gave away money or merchandise. But by banning these ceremonial rites, the amendment had criminalized some of the basic traditions of Canada’s First Nations peoples, and pushed music and dance to the forefront of efforts to resist assimilation.
  • Ceremonial dances are time-honoured traditions that reinforce and strengthen kinship and social ties, and spiritual well-being among communities.
  • The Indian Act was first introduced in 1876 by the federal government to consolidate previous ordinances. Its scope has evolved in time to cover a wide range of issues, from defining a legal identity to managing land use and establishing local governance.
  • By 2002, over 20 major amendments had been made to the original Act, including the removal of discriminatory cultural and spiritual restrictions in 1951.

Your coin is encapsulated and presented in a Royal Canadian Mint-branded maroon clamshell with a graphic beauty box.


  • No. 154198
  • Mintage 1,200
  • Composition 99.99% pure silver
  • Finish proof
  • Weight (g) 157.6
  • Diameter (mm) 65.25
  • Edge serrated
  • Certificate serialized
  • Face value 50 dollars
  • Artist Darlene Gait (reverse), Susanna Blunt (obverse)

Additional information

Weight 157.6 g


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