The issue of this is still disputed to this day-- The mendota at Mille Lacs / Rum River or mendota at Minnesota / Mississippi rivers.
The Dakota Were Always Here -- Chris C Cavendar (Mato Nunpa) 1988- excerpt from Hennepin County History Magazine;
Most Dakota people whom I know believe not only that they were here first in Mi-ni So-ta Ma-ko-ce but also that they were always here! In fact, this statement can probably be generalized to all the indigenous people of North America. That is, they believe not only that they were here first but also that they were always here. A common saying among Dakota elders of another Indian nations when they hear about the theory that Indian people came to North America from Asia across the Bearing Straight is this: “I’d like to go up to the Bearing Strait. I bet the footprints point in the other way”
In Dakota language, mdo-te refers to the joining of one stream with another. This can mean the joining of a creek to a river, the joining of a river to another river, or the joining of a river to a lake or ocean. That is why the juncture of the Minnesota river and the Mississippi River is called mdo-te or Mendota. This was the most important mdo-te, according to what I heard when I grew up in the Upper Sioux community, but it wasn't until I was an adult that I learned from Mde-wa-kan-ton-wan elders from Prairie Island why Mendota was so important.
They told me that it was there that creation occurred. It was there that the first human being appeared on the face of the earth from the underground. In fact, the Mde-wa-kan-ton-wan D akota (or "Mystic Lake Dwellers") call this point "ma-ko-ce co-ka-ya kin," or "the center of the earh."
The I-hank-ton-wan (or "End-village Dwellers"), according to my understanding, refer to the Continental Divide as "the center of the earth." The Ti-ton-wan (or "Dwellers on the Prairies, or Plains") refer to the Pa-ha Sa-pa (the Black Hills) as "the center of the earth,” according to creation myths recorded by Mr. American ' Horse and Mrs. Vivian One Feather.
Even though the various Dakota and Lakota creation myths differ on exactly where creation occurred, the main point should not be lost: The Dakota and Lakota people believe, without a shadow of a doubt, that we were always here! A wa-si-cun (non Indian) anthropologist, archaeologist or historian could talk from sunup to sundown about the Bearing Straight theory and could pile up his or her facts, charts, tables and statistics until they were as high as the IDS Tower and it still would not make a difference to a Dakota or Lakota. WE WERE ALWAYS HERE!!! He-ce-tu ye-do! (So it is!)
Much credit has recently been given to the new book published in 2012- Mni Sota Makoce: The Land of the Dakota by Bruce White and Gwen Westerman, partly due to their uncovering of a 1720 French document stating the Dakota creation story is below St Anthony Falls.. However the book short quotes is own sources repeatedly without any critical review, yet cite these shortened quotes as a primary source for credibility. The complete sentence in the original 1720 document along with the sentence before and after it is;
"They [Dakota] use herbs very little, and have no faith except in their conjurers.