August 31, 2018
This Local American Indian Tribe Doesn’t Want Official Recognition
Earlier this year, the Trump administration granted federal recognition to six American Indian tribes in Virginia. The move makes those tribes eligible for federal funding, but a neighboring tribe in Maryland’s Prince George’s county is opting not to apply. This news story explores what federal recognition means for tribes, and speaks with the tribal chief and her daughter from the Piscataway Conoy Tribe of Maryland.
Settlers nearly destroyed Michigan’s wild rice beds. Native tribes are restoring them.
There is a rich tradition of wild rice, especially for Michigan's first people. The plant plays a big role in the culture of Anishinaabe tribes, who call it manoomin.
Vast rice beds used to sit at the mouths of Michigan’s rivers. Some were thousands of acres in size. When European settlers arrived, they nearly destroyed the resource.
Now only one large bed remains in Michigan, but there is work afoot to restore and protect wild rice.
With new coding skills, Tobique students help create knowledge map
The Tobique First Nation reserve lies at the point where the Tobique River meets the St. John in eastern New Brunswick. Its Wolastoqiyik name is Negotkuk, which means "where one river flows beneath another."
And here, a Wolastoqiyik organization has enlisted students in an innovative way to share Indigenous knowledge of the area.
They've created an app, called CodersNorth Tobique, which plots out the area and invites people to explore it electronically for detail and stories.
Users will be able to expand a plot on this traditional knowledge map and see its historical and cultural significance to the community. The information will be enriched by photos and videos of the various locations, and by interviews and teachings linked to it by local elders.
Throughout the summer, Wolastoqiyik high school students have been taking part in a program led by the Wolastoq Education Initiative, which is teaching them how to write code using the Apple Swift coding language
"The purpose of the application, the traditional knowledge map, is to generate all of the information that we have here in the community," said Sky Perley, the organization's executive director.
"And who better to gather this information than the youth? That way, they're both learning and teaching at the same time."
KARYL FRANKIEWICZ WINS MISS NATIVE AMERICAN USA
Karyl Frankiewicz, a 25-year-old citizen of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians, has won the Miss Native American USA title.
She hails from a small town in the Great Smoky Mountains. She became Miss Cherokee and Miss Indian North Carolina.
Frankiewicz obtained a degree in Early Childhood Education from Southwestern Community College in Sylva, North Carolina and is currently the Youth Development Professional at the Cherokee Youth Center Boys and Girls Club of America.
This Week's History Lesson...
Canadian anthropologist Vilhjalmur Stefansson spent much of his time exploring the Arctic. Instead of taking vast stores of food, he ate what the Inuit ate: fish, caribou, walrus, and other meat, with few fruits and vegetables of any kind.
Cherokee Nation v. Georgia (1831) asked the Supreme Court to determine whether a state may impose its laws on Native Americans and their territory. In the late 1820s, the Georgia legislature passed laws designed to force the Cherokee people off of their historic land. The Supreme Court refused to rule on whether the Georgia state laws were applicable to the Cherokee people. Instead, the Court ruled that it did not have jurisdiction over the case because the Cherokee Nation, was a “domestic dependent nation” instead of a “foreign state."
Students of American history learn that European explorers, conquerors, and settlers brought diseases that ravaged the Americas in the 14th and 15th centuries. However, the absolute devastation those pathogens wrought wasn't fully understood for a long time. The ability of relatively small armies to conquer entire civilizations on their home turf wasn't due to superior force, strategy, or technology as much as it was due to microscopic invaders -and it wasn't limited to smallpox, either.