« July 2014 | Main | September 2014 »

August 31, 2014

This Day in the Maya Calendar: September 2014

Cholq'ij, the Maya sacred ceremonial calendar of 260 days—a cycle of 20 Day deities and 13 numbers—is the basis of the Maya spirituality that survives to this time, practiced daily among millions of Maya people, in thousands of communities. The interpretation of the days can vary from one Maya people to another. The interpretations given here are based on sustained conversations and participation over three decades with Maya Q'eqchi calendar priest Roderico Teni and daykeeping families in the area of Cobán, Alta Verapaz, Guatemala, by Jose Barreiro (Taíno), head of NMAI’s Office of Latin America, and his wife, Katsi Cook (Mohawk). Glyphs representing the Day lords appear throughout Maya Country; these were painted by Esteban Pop Caal (Q'eqchi Maya) of Cobán.

For more background to this series, please see Jose's introduction, "Living in the Practice." For further insight into the role of the Day lords in everyday life, please see the Maya Journal. For the complete year so far, please see the Maya calendar archive.

Illustrations: Esteban Pop Caal (Q'eqchi Maya), calendar glyphs. Cobán, Alta Verapaz, Guatemala; 2003. Paint on wood. Purchased from the artist. 26/2685. Photos by Ernest Amoroso, NMAI 

2 Anil  |  Tuesday, September 30, 2014

262685_AnilCorresponding with this day in the Gregorian calendar is 2 Anil. Anil is the fertility in the seed, Anil is Rabbit; 2 is duality. Anil is red, white, yellow, black—the four colors of corn, the seed of life that is the unity of the world. Anil is renewal after death, regeneration of the earth. Anil people are four-directions people and can be good travelers. This is a day of coming back, a day to generate and appreciate abundance, a day of declaring love to create a new relationship, a day to announce the wish to do business, a day of finding lost things, a day to ask for help in overcoming shyness. —Jose Barreiro 

1 Kiej  |  Monday, September 29, 2014 

262685_Kiej

Corresponding with this day in the Gregorian calendar is 1 Kiej. Kiej is the Deer; 1 is the beginning. Kiej is the four directions, four hoofs striking the earth at once, the quaternity of the cosmos linked to prayer, highest aviso to el Mundo—the living world. Kiej is the staff of authority, keen energy of a chief to detect danger, perception of the leader buck, his horns. Kiej is a good day to pray for mental and physical agility, a day of agile travelers and good communicators. It is a day also to ask for clarity before gossip and ill intentions. A major gift of nature, Kiej holds indefatigable energy. He is one of the four main carriers of time. —J. B. 

13 Kame  |  Sunday, September 28, 2014 

262685_KameCorresponding with this day in the Gregorian calendar is 13 Kame. Kame is the Owl and the recognition of death; 13 is the highest turbulence. A day that recalls the night, tranquility, and silence, Kame is a good day to ask for the ancient and recent ancestors who have gone on, to thank them, and to remember them with purpose. This is an appropriate day to extend reconciliation, to feel and give forgiveness, to develop patience, to invoke against mortal illnesses, to access superior knowledge. Without fear, it is a good day to approach the spiritual dimension, "the enchantment." —J. B. 

12 Kan  |  Saturday, September 27, 2014 

262685_KanCorresponding with this day in the Gregorian calendar is 12 Kan. Kan is the Snake; 12 is the highest balance. Kan is the ancient origin—Gucumatz, the Plumed Serpent. This is a day of strict and impartial justice, a day of definition and maturity, and a good day to offer respect and to thank the corn. On Kan, matters of justice, judges, and courts can be cleared up. This is a good day to pray that truth and justice are manifest in the Heart of Sky, Heart of Earth; a good day to put aside jealousies and request equilibrium in life and in the family. It is a day to ask for physical strength and patience, to contemplate our spiritual evolution, and to rekindle the internal fire. —J. B. 

11 Kat  |  Friday, September 26, 2014

262685_KatCorresponding with this day in the Gregorian calendar is 11 Kat. Kat is Spider, also Web and Fire; 11 is high turbulence. On Kat the unity of the people is paramount, and knowledge is deepened. Kat is the network of the sacred heart, the family hearth. Today is a good day to pray for your family fireplace, the spirit of the fire that belongs in the home, the one that calls other spirits to ceremony and speaks for them. Kat is the net that hauls in the fish and the net that holds the ears of corn, a day that can bring the fruition of things and the untangling of complications. This is a good day to help free prisoners from captivity, to request vigor and power for the weak. —J. B. 

10 Aqbal  |  Thursday, September 25, 2014

262685_AqbalCorresponding with this day in the Gregorian calendar is 10 Aqbal. Aqbal is the Dawn, also Bat; 10 is a high balance. Aqbal is clarity, the separation of darkness and light as the Sun disperses the fog and obscurity of night. This is a good day to ask for a peaceful and happy daybreak, a day to find hidden and lost things, a day to wash away tears of sadness. On Aqbal, the sacred fire is recognized and appreciated. Aqbal is a good day to clean the ashes (renew the heart) of a fireplace and to present a new baby to el Mundo. A potential bride or groom can be revealed on this day. Harvesting of corn can begin on this day. People born on Aqbal relate in the present and are a special link between past and future. They are early risers, good workers, tranquil and kind, strong before an enemy, good researchers and finders of hidden things, often called "the candle of the home." —J. B. 

9 Iq  |  Wednesday, September 24, 2014

262685_IqCorresponding with this day in the Gregorian calendar is 9 Iq. Iq is Wind, also Moon; 9 is a triple rotor. Wind is powerful, violent, driven of itself, identity. A day of strong emotion, Iq is also a healing day. Good wind is nutritional for human minds; it is the mystic breath and vital inspiration of nature. On Iq, a breeze or wind that splits against your face is a blessing and a cleansing to purge your head and body of illness. Respiratory ills are prayed over on this day. This is a good day to appreciate all of Creation. The Day lord Iq is one of the four Yearbearers, or mams, a creator who helped finish the world and put breath (essence) in human beings. People born on Iq are inclined toward spiritual ways and can impulsively tap into cosmic sources. —J. B. 

8 Imox  |  Tuesday,  September 23, 2014

262685_ImoxCorresponding with this day in the Gregorian calendar is 8 Imox. Imox is Lizard; 8 is a double balance. Imox is the very force of gravity and a good day to pray for creativity and for rain. Imox can open el Mundo to receive cosmic messages. Known as a "crazy" day, Imox requires much concentration and control. A day of high male intelligence, also impatience and agitation, Imox can be difficult. Grounded on its left side, left arm, this day is easily unbalanced and in need of clasping by left and right hands. Imox can be good if held in the balance of the Heart of Sky and Heart of Earth; unattended, Imox can manifest imbalance, mental nervousness, and even death. People born on Imox are open and sincere, but indecisive—in need of ceremony to set the positive to override the negative. —J. B. 

7 Ajpu  |  Monday, September 22, 2014

262685_AjpuCorresponding with this day in the Gregorian calendar is 7 Ajpu. Ajpu is Caracol, Spiral Shell; 7 is a pivotal number. Ajpu is the Sun, captain of time, a day of personal strength and for good to triumph over evil. Ajpu, who cares for boys and guides men, begins the men's cycle. This is a day to connect with the ancestors, who can reward and punish. Death is reachable and amenable; spirits can ask permission to enter el Mundo, the living world. Day of the warrior and blowgun hunter (cerbatanero), Ajpu is the strong blow of the dart that hits its target, a good day to pray for stealth or for a break in enemy lines. Ajpu is also a good day to start building on a house, a good day to make prayers for women and for success in lactation. —J. B.  

6 Kawoq  |  Sunday, September 21, 2014 

262685_Kawoq

Corresponding with this day in the Gregorian calendar is 6 Kawoq. Kawoq is Turtle, also Sky Serpent; 6 is a middle, even number. Kawoq is a high woman day—a day of duality in all of nature and a guardian of contentment. It is the day of woman and man, lightning and thunder, fecundity and imagination; a day of midwives; a day of prayer for unity within the home, strength within the family, renewed strength for convalescents, and the smoothing of all irritation. This is a good day to turn bad medicine back on itself. Kawoq attends to young women in pregnancy, labor, and delivery, and to full realization for all women; it is a day of their sash. Kawoq is also a good day to commemorate the Staff of Authority, a good day for the men of a family and community to pray for the coffers (good fortune) of the women and for the protection of the home. Good midwives, writers, and architects are born on this day. —J. B. 

5 Tijax  |  Saturday, September 20, 2014

262685_TijaxCorresponding with this day in the Gregorian calendar is 5 Tijax. Tijax is Fish, also Obsidian; 5 is one hand. Tijax is a day of doctors, good to pray for surgeons and all medical practitioners; a day of sacrifice and liberation from suffering; a day of sharp, cutting objects, of knives and scalpels and scissors. Tijax is a safeguard for domestic animals against predators, a good day to pray for all animals that are sacrificed, both in ceremony and in everyday life. Tijax is a good day to use metal (a machete, scissors) to "open the sky"—to solicit rain, solicit life, split black clouds. Gossip, calumny, and sorcery, on money and sexual matters, can be overcome on this day; on a high-number day, disputes can turn public and become debilitating. Tijax is a good day for seasoned masters to fortify daykeeping trainees against ridicule by envious countrymen or evangelicos. It is not a good day to plant. —J. B. 

4 Noj  |  Friday, September 19, 2014

262685_NojCorresponding with this day in the Gregorian calendar is 4 Noj. Noj is Woodpecker; 4 is a balance. Noj is a woman's highest intelligence. Maya knowledge and wisdom live in this day—good science to support positive deeds, good projects, good business, a good home. On Noj good ideas are available through the intelligence connected to the movement of the earth. Boys born on this day have important female qualities and can be attentive to the knowledge of nature, which rules all. Girls born on this day can be clear leaders. This is a good day to hear advice and make decisions, a good day to feed the mind, recognize curiosity, and strengthen memory. Noj is one of the four Yearbearers. —J. B. 

3 Ajmac  |  Thursday, September 18, 2014

262685_AjmacCorresponding with this day in the Gregorian calendar is 3 Ajmac. Ajmac is Bee, also Vulture; 3 is a rotor. On Ajmac ancestor spirits can detect and smooth the thread of time in our lives. Prudence, intelligence, ancient wisdom are in this day. This is a day to plead forgiveness for serious faults and to be judged. It is a day that demands moral rectitude, respect, and sincere analysis. On this day our faults (stains) must be faced and paid for; humble request for pity is encouraged. Ajmac is a propitious day for the women of a household to make peace with one another after conflict, to apologize for sharp words; it is a good day to pray for smooth relationships and the renewal of agreements among women. Hard luck can face those born on Ajmac. —J. B. 

2 Tz'ikin  |  Wednesday, September 17, 2014

262685_Tz'ikinCorresponding with this day in the Gregorian calendar is 2 Tz'ikin. Tz'ikin is Bird, best represented by the Hummingbird, also the Quetzal and Eagle; 2 is duality. Tz'ikin carries messages between the Heart of Earth and Heart of Sky. Cold, heat, light, air, cloud are its elements. Love, intuition, precognition are strong in those born on this day. Tz'ikin is a good day for humans to follow birds to the corn—to find good material luck. This is a good day to ask for revelation and intelligence, for vision, and for abundance; a good day to ask for collaboration in projects or for personal freedom. On this day, women have the privilege to ask for their husbands and sons to triple the family money. —J. B.  

1 I'x  |  Tuesday, September 16, 2014 

262685_I'x

Corresponding with this day in the Gregorian calendar is 1 I'x. I'x is Jaguar; 1 is the beginning. I'x is woman's energy day. This is a day to connect with your own land and to pray for its original owners; to pray for and appreciate your house; to pray for the finances to buy and sustain land; to ask for fertility in humans and animals; to request vigor and strength for reproductive organs, particularly female. I'x is a good day to pray to the mountains in favor of the land. It is a good day for a woman to request strength in her husband's commitment to matrimonial stability. People born on I'x have a close relationship to el Mundo and receive good access to precious metals. I'x is a good day for solitude and meditation. —J. B.  

13 Aj  |  Monday, September 15, 2014 

262685_AjCorresponding with this day in the Gregorian calendar is 13 Aj. Aj is Cane Reed; 13 is the highest imbalance. Aj begins the women's cycle, sentiments of family and home, the spinal cord. Aj is life and receives life. This is a day of resurgence and renewal, as in the reed and the corn; a day for the triumph of good over evil, life over death; a day of happiness, renewal of food, money, the heart of life. People born on this day renew their communities; they are sickly as children and sturdy as adults; they are especially lucky; they are good awakeners of their families and communities; they make good midwives. Aj is a good day to ask for clarity of destiny, a good day to pray for the protection of your life and of the newborn, a good day to pray for twins, a good day to pray for humanity. —J. B. 

12 Eh  |  Sunday, September 14, 2014

262685_Eh

Corresponding with this day in the Gregorian calendar is 12 Eh. Eh is Bobcat, also the Path and the Tooth; 12 is the highest balance. Eh can orient individuals, groups, or communities to their destiny. Eh is the day to ask for protection from dangers and obstructions during travels—specifically, that on your road the attention of thieves or highway police or border inspectors will be deviated from your trajectory. Solitude is in Eh, light rain, kindness, alignment. People born on this day can be good counselors, spiritual guides with the gift of prayer to Ajaw (Creator) on the destiny of things. Also, good dentists are born on this day. Eh is one of the four pillars of the 20 days, a Yearbearer—a strong, especially sacred day. A prayer started in Batz can be carried by Eh through the full cycle of 20 days. —J. B. 

11 Batz  |  Saturday, September 13, 2014

262685_BatzCorresponding with this day in the Gregorian calendar is 11 Batz. Batz is Monkey; 11 is high turbulence. Monkey braid, monkey fingers, monkey tail, Batz is the grasp of the monkey's hand so tight and braided the fist will not let go, even in death. Batz is a good day for beginnings, and for some Maya daykeepers, Batz begins the 20-day calendar. Batz is unity, a good day to tie things together, a good day for a marriage or to start a construction, a good day for initiation into the ways. Batz is the thread of time that rolls out from under the earth, weaving life until cut, weaving time into history. People born on Batz are calm and self-confident; they make good spiritual guides and leaders, and goodhearted architects. —J. B.

10 Tzi  |  Friday, September 12, 2014

6a01156f5f4ba1970b019b04c65ab2970d-200wiCorresponding with this day in the Gregorian calendar is 10 Tzi. Tzi is the Canine, the guardian; 10 is a high balance. Dog, Wolf, Coyote, Tzi can be snarly, terrifying the unprepared with his bark and his bite. Tzi people are zealous to guard the sacredness of ceremony, to identify and punish "intruders," those not disciplined to participate. Benevolent to friends and fierce to enemies, Tzi is steady to reward or punish. Tzi will punish those who disrespect the Days and the spirit of the family. This is a good day to ask for mystic insight for leaders so that they can seek and discover hidden things, so that they can be just. Tzi has strong sexual energy, hard to restrain. When this energy is defined, people born on Tzi make loyal friends, husbands, and wives. —J. B. 

9 Toj  |  Thursday,  September 11, 2014

262685_TojCorresponding with this day in the Gregorian calendar is 9 Toj. Toj is the mystic Fish—the tear of jade and drops of rain, water falling; 9 is a triple rotor. Toj is a day of making even, a good day to pay spiritual and financial debts and to collect what you are owed. This is a day of evenness for a family, a good day for parents to pay the family's debt to el Mundo, good for the oldest son to appreciate the father and the father to appreciate the mountain. Illness can be deviated from the family by making a ceremonial offering on this day. —J. B. 

8 Anil  |  Wednesday, September 10, 2014

262685_AnilCorresponding with this day in the Gregorian calendar is 8 Anil. Anil is the fertility in the seed, Anil is Rabbit; 8 is a double balance. Anil is red, white, yellow, black—the four colors of corn, the seed of life that is the unity of the world. Anil is renewal after death, regeneration of the earth. Anil people are four-directions people and can be good travelers. This is a day of coming back, a day to generate and appreciate abundance, a day of declaring love to create a new relationship, a day to announce the wish to do business, a day of finding lost things, a day to ask for help in overcoming shyness. —J. B. 

7 Kiej  |  Tuesday, September 9, 2014 

262685_Kiej

Corresponding with this day in the Gregorian calendar is 7 Kiej. Kiej is the Deer; 7 is a pivotal number. Kiej is the four directions, four hoofs striking the earth at once, the quaternity of the cosmos linked to prayer, highest aviso to el Mundo—the living world. Kiej is the staff of authority, keen energy of a chief to detect danger, perception of the leader buck, his horns. Kiej is a good day to pray for mental and physical agility, a day of agile travelers and good communicators. It is a day also to ask for clarity before gossip and ill intentions. A major gift of nature, Kiej holds indefatigable energy. He is one of the four main carriers of time. —J. B. 

6 Kame  |  Monday, September 8, 2014 

262685_KameCorresponding with this day in the Gregorian calendar is 6 Kame. Kame is the Owl and the recognition of death; 6 is a middle, even number. A day that recalls the night, tranquility, and silence, Kame is a good day to ask for the ancient and recent ancestors who have gone on, to thank them, and to remember them with purpose. This is an appropriate day to extend reconciliation, to feel and give forgiveness, to develop patience, to invoke against mortal illnesses, to access superior knowledge. Without fear, it is a good day to approach the spiritual dimension, "the enchantment." —J. B. 

5 Kan  |  Sunday, September 7, 2014 

262685_KanCorresponding with this day in the Gregorian calendar is 5 Kan. Kan is the Snake; 5 is one hand. Kan is the ancient origin—Gucumatz, the Plumed Serpent. This is a day of strict and impartial justice, a day of definition and maturity, and a good day to offer respect and to thank the corn. On Kan, matters of justice, judges, and courts can be cleared up. This is a good day to pray that truth and justice are manifest in the Heart of Sky, Heart of Earth; a good day to put aside jealousies and request equilibrium in life and in the family. It is a day to ask for physical strength and patience, to contemplate our spiritual evolution, and to rekindle the internal fire. —J. B. 

4 Kat  |  Saturday, September 6, 2014

262685_KatCorresponding with this day in the Gregorian calendar is 4 Kat. Kat is Spider, also Web and Fire; 4 is a balance. On Kat the unity of the people is paramount, and knowledge is deepened. Kat is the network of the sacred heart, the family hearth. Today is a good day to pray for your family fireplace, the spirit of the fire that belongs in the home, the one that calls other spirits to ceremony and speaks for them. Kat is the net that hauls in the fish and the net that holds the ears of corn, a day that can bring the fruition of things and the untangling of complications. This is a good day to help free prisoners from captivity, to request vigor and power for the weak. —J. B. 

3 Aqbal  |  Friday, September 5, 2014

262685_AqbalCorresponding with this day in the Gregorian calendar is 3 Aqbal. Aqbal is the Dawn, also Bat; 3 is a rotor. Aqbal is clarity, the separation of darkness and light as the Sun disperses the fog and obscurity of night. This is a good day to ask for a peaceful and happy daybreak, a day to find hidden and lost things, a day to wash away tears of sadness. On Aqbal, the sacred fire is recognized and appreciated. Aqbal is a good day to clean the ashes (renew the heart) of a fireplace and to present a new baby to el Mundo. A potential bride or groom can be revealed on this day. Harvesting of corn can begin on this day. People born on Aqbal relate in the present and are a special link between past and future. They are early risers, good workers, tranquil and kind, strong before an enemy, good researchers and finders of hidden things, often called "the candle of the home." —J. B. 

2 Iq  |  Thursday, September 4, 2014

262685_IqCorresponding with this day in the Gregorian calendar is 2 Iq. Iq is Wind, also Moon; 2 is duality. Wind is powerful, violent, driven of itself, identity. A day of strong emotion, Iq is also a healing day. Good wind is nutritional for human minds; it is the mystic breath and vital inspiration of nature. On Iq, a breeze or wind that splits against your face is a blessing and a cleansing to purge your head and body of illness. Respiratory ills are prayed over on this day. This is a good day to appreciate all of Creation. The Day lord Iq is one of the four Yearbearers, or mams, a creator who helped finish the world and put breath (essence) in human beings. People born on Iq are inclined toward spiritual ways and can impulsively tap into cosmic sources. —J. B. 

1 Imox  |  Wednesday,  September 3, 2014

262685_ImoxCorresponding with this day in the Gregorian calendar is 1 Imox. Imox is Lizard; 1 is the beginning. Imox is the very force of gravity and a good day to pray for creativity and for rain. Imox can open el Mundo to receive cosmic messages. Known as a "crazy" day, Imox requires much concentration and control. A day of high male intelligence, also impatience and agitation, Imox can be difficult. Grounded on its left side, left arm, this day is easily unbalanced and in need of clasping by left and right hands. Imox can be good if held in the balance of the Heart of Sky and Heart of Earth; unattended, Imox can manifest imbalance, mental nervousness, and even death. People born on Imox are open and sincere, but indecisive—in need of ceremony to set the positive to override the negative. —J. B. 

13 Ajpu  |  Tuesday, September 2, 2014

262685_AjpuCorresponding with this day in the Gregorian calendar is 13 Ajpu. Ajpu is Caracol, Spiral Shell; 13 is the highest turbulence. Ajpu is the Sun, captain of time, a day of personal strength and for good to triumph over evil. Ajpu, who cares for boys and guides men, begins the men's cycle. This is a day to connect with the ancestors, who can reward and punish. Death is reachable and amenable; spirits can ask permission to enter el Mundo, the living world. Day of the warrior and blowgun hunter (cerbatanero), Ajpu is the strong blow of the dart that hits its target, a good day to pray for stealth or for a break in enemy lines. Ajpu is also a good day to start building on a house, a good day to make prayers for women and for success in lactation. —J. B.  

12 Kawoq  |  Monday,  September 1, 2014 

262685_Kawoq

Corresponding with this day in the Gregorian calendar is 12 Kawoq. Kawoq is Turtle, also Sky Serpent; 12 is the highest balance. Kawoq is a high woman day—a day of duality in all of nature and a guardian of contentment. It is the day of woman and man, lightning and thunder, fecundity and imagination; a day of midwives; a day of prayer for unity within the home, strength within the family, renewed strength for convalescents, and the smoothing of all irritation. This is a good day to turn bad medicine back on itself. Kawoq attends to young women in pregnancy, labor, and delivery, and to full realization for all women; it is a day of their sash. Kawoq is also a good day to commemorate the Staff of Authority, a good day for the men of a family and community to pray for the coffers (good fortune) of the women and for the protection of the home. Good midwives, writers, and architects are born on this day. —J. B. 

Comments (0)

    » Post a Comment

August 29, 2014

Meet Native America: Jonathan Poahway, Comanche Business Committeeman #1

In the interview series Meet Native America, the Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian invites tribal leaders, cultural figures, and other interesting and accomplished Native individuals to introduce themselves and say a little about their lives and work. Together, their responses illustrate the diversity of the indigenous communities of the Western Hemisphere, as well as their shared concerns, and offer insights beyond what’s in the news to the ideas and experiences of Native people today. —Dennis Zotigh 


Jonathan Poahway e
Comanche Business Committeeman Jonathan Poahway speaking at the 2014 Johnson–O'Malley Senior Banquet.  Cache High School, Cache, Oklahoma.

Please introduce yourself with your name and title.

Jonathan Poahway, Comanche Business Committeeman #1.

What is your name in your language, and what does it mean?

Tsaa tuhoi—it means Good Hunter.

Where is your tribe located?

The Comanche Nation Complex is in Lawton, in southwest Oklahoma.

Where were the Comanche originally from?

Wyoming—we were originally a band of the Shoshone, or they were a band of us, perhaps. 

What is a significant point in history from your people that you would like to share?

No United States war with any tribal nation lasted more than ten years, except the war against the Comanche. That lasted for forty years. Also the Comanche were the “roadblock” against Spanish expansion and conquest on this continent! 

What responsibilities do you have as a member of the Business Committee?

To secure a financially stable future for all tribal members, as well as for future generations. 

How did your life experience prepare you to lead?

I was raised as the youngest child of 15. The majority of us were raised by a single parent after our father died. Our mother was a fluent speaker of Comanche, with English as her second language, and she worked very hard to provide for us all. She worked two and sometimes three jobs. It instilled in us children a fine work ethic. Her parents spoke only Comanche and taught her to take care of others before yourself, and that is also ingrained in us. So it is in my heart to take care of all our nation, especially the children and our children's grandchildren.

Who inspired you as a mentor?

I would have to say one of my older brothers, who was on the council once as well. He taught me that honesty is the best policy, also that doing right will positively affect more people than doing wrong would.

Are you a descendant of a historical leader?

No.

Approximately how many members are in your nation?

Approximately 16,000. 

What are the criteria to become a member of the Comanche Nation?

To be enrolled, you must be one-eighth Comanche Indian blood quantum and a descendant of an original Comanche Nation land allottee. 

Is your language still spoken on your homelands? If so, what percentage of your people would you estimate are fluent speakers? 

Only by the elderly. Fluency is probably as low as 3 percent. There is a language committee working to change that.

How is your tribal government set up?

We have a chairman who is in charge of day-to day-operations, a Business Committee whose members are policymakers and decide on investments under a certain amount, and the General Council—the people,  all members of the Comanche Nation who are eighteen years old or older—who vote on investments over the amount.

How often are leaders chosen?

The chairman has a two-year term, and seats on the Business Committee are for a three-year term.

How often does the government meet?

The Business Committee meets once a month, and the General Council meets once a year.

Johnny and niece
Jonathan Poahway and his daughter, Melissa Marie Koehler, Miss Comanche Nation College, at the Comanche Nation College Pow Wow. Lawton, Oklahoma; May, 2014.

How does your nation deal with the United States as a sovereign nation?

We are supposed to be treated with the respect given to foreign nations. Sometimes we are not, and have to fight for and remind the United States government of our sovereignty. 

What attractions are available for visitors on your tribal lands?

We have casinos, the Comanche Nation Tourism Center, a water park, and the Comanche National Museum and Cultural Center.

What annual events does your nation sponsor?

We have the Comanche Nation Fair, which is coming up September 26 through 28, and a Comanche Nation Homecoming Pow Wow to honor our veterans.

What message would you like to share with Native youth?  

Education will take you a long ways and open many doors. Respect—for others—will keep those doors open!

Is there anything else you would like to add?

It is our responsibility as stewards of the land to pass down to many generations the knowledge and ability to take care of our mother, Earth!

Thank you. 


All photographs courtesy of Committeeman Poahway, used with permission.

To read other interviews in this series, click on the banner below. Meet-native-america
From left to right: Representative Ponka-We Victors (Tohono O’odham/Southern Ponca) taking the oath of office in the Kansas House of Representatives; photo courtesy of Kansas Rep. Scott Schwab. Bird Runningwater (Cheyenne/Mescalero Apache) at the Sundance Film Festival; photo courtesy of WireImage. Sergeant Debra Mooney (Choctaw) at the powwow in Al Taqaddum Air Force Base, Iraq, 2004; photo courtesy of Sgt. Debra Mooney. Councilman Jonathan Perry (Wampanoag) in traditional clothing; photo courtesy of Jonathan Perry. Suzan Shown Harjo (Cheyenne/Hodulgee Muscogee) at Blackhorse et al. v. Pro Football, Inc., press conference, U.S. Patent and Trade Office, February 7, 2013; photo courtesy of Mary Phillips. All photos used with permission.         

Comments (2)

    » Post a Comment

Johnny Poahway represents a change in tribal governmental politics, he is a young and educated and a Comanche leader who advocates for language preservation, leadership, and fiscal responsibility for the Comanche people.

culture is the wealth of a nation. I appreciate your cultural diversity and how that culture was still maintained. Pictures photos in this article show a truly unique high culture. This is my hometown in Indonesia—Trawas.

August 22, 2014

Meet Native America: Ted Grant, Vice-Chairman of the Otoe–Missouria Tribe

In the interview series Meet Native America, the Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian invites tribal leaders, cultural figures, and other interesting and accomplished Native individuals to introduce themselves and say a little about their lives and work. Together, their responses illustrate the diversity of the indigenous communities of the Western Hemisphere, as well as their shared concerns, and offer insights beyond what’s in the news to the ideas and experiences of Native people today. —Dennis Zotigh 

Tedphoto a
Ted Grant, vice-chairman of the Otoe–Missouria Tribe. The tribal seal in the background shows the seven clans of the Otoe–Missouria, with a prayer feather at the center.

Please introduce yourself with your name and title.

Ted Grant, vice-chairman of the Otoe–Missouria Tribe.

Can you share with us your Native name and its English translation? 

My name is Che’Xanje~Obahomani. It's translated Big Buffalo Walks in the Snow. It comes from the Buffalo Clan of the Otoe–Missouria Tribe.

Where is your community located?

The Otoe–Missouria Tribal Complex is located in north central Oklahoma in Noble County.

Where were your people originally from?

At one time the Otoes and Missourias, along with the Winnebago and Iowa peoples, were part of a single tribe that lived in the Great Lakes region of the United States. In the 16th century the tribes separated from each other and migrated west and south, although they still lived near each other in the lower Missouri River Valley.

What is a significant point in the history of the Otoe–Missouria that you would like to share?

In the summer of 1804, the Otoe and Missouria were the first tribes to hold government-to-government council with Lewis and Clark in their official role as representatives of President Jefferson. The captains presented to the chiefs a document that offered peace while at the same time asserting the United States' claim of sovereignty over the tribe.

How is your tribal government set up?

The Tribal Council is the elected governing body of the Otoe–Missouria Tribe. The Tribal Council consists of seven members elected by secret ballot by qualified voters of the tribe. Each Tribal Council member has responsibilities for certain duties as listed in the Otoe–Missouria Tribe of Indians Constitution

 

Rrcreek a
Vice-Chairman Grant (3rd from left) with fellow members of the Red Rock Creek Gourd Society of the Otoe–Missouria Tribe.


Is there a functional, traditional entity of leadership in addition to your modern government system?

There are our traditional churches, including the First Born Church of the Otoe–Missouria Tribe, Otoe Native American Church, and Otoe Tribal Sweat Lodge.

How often are elected leaders chosen?

The terms for each Tribal Council member are staggered and last for three years. There are no term limits.

How often does the Tribal Council meet?

The Tribal Council holds regular meetings monthly in a place and date determined by the members. Currently the meetings are held in the Council Building at tribal headquarters. Meetings are open to the public, except when the council is in executive session.

Additionally, a General Council Meeting consisting of all enrolled tribal members over the age of 18 is held each year on the first Saturday in November. 

What responsibilities do you have as a tribal leader?

To ensure our tribal members are taken care of, to see that our tribal programs continue to help all of our tribal members, and to do my very best to protect the future and security of our tribal sovereignty.      

How did your life experience prepare you to lead your tribe?

My mother and father taught me to always keep God in my life, respect my elders, and take care of my family. My father shared a lot of cultural teachings with me. I try to utilize this to assist people and organizations when called upon. My previous work in tribal law enforcement has uniquely prepared me for the challenges presented to a position on the Tribal Council.

Who inspired you as a mentor?

My father, William Leroy Grant—Bill Grant, as everyone knew him.

Are you a descendant of a historical leader? If so, who?

Tar-A-Ku (sometimes Tae-K-Kee), which is translated Deer Thigh or Deer Ham, a great leader of his people.

Approximately how many members are in the Otoe–Missouria community?

There are currently about 3,100 enrolled Otoe–Missouria tribal members.

What are the criteria to become a member?

All enrolled Otoe–Missouria tribal members must be one-eighth blood descendants of someone on the tribe’s 1966 base roll.

Is your language still spoken on your homelands? If so, what percentage of your people would you estimate are fluent speakers?

Unfortunately, there are no fluent speakers of the Otoe–Missouria language remaining. Some language is used in cultural events and ceremonies, but most of the language is lost. A tribal language program was created five years ago to retain what little is left and to revitalize the language through archived recordings.

What economic enterprises does your tribe own?

The Otoe–Missouria Tribe owns four gaming properties, two convenience stores, a hotel, an event center, a propane company, a cattle company, and several online financial services companies.

What annual events does your tribe sponsor?

The largest gathering of Otoe–Missouria people is the Annual Summer Encampment. It is held each year during the third week of July. This summer marked the 133rd time the tribe has celebrated the encampment.  

What attractions are available for visitors on your land?

Other than our casinos, the largest draw for visitors is to attend our first-class concerts. Top performers are scheduled each month at our Council Bluffs Events Center and 7 Clans Paradise Casino.   

How does your tribe deal with the United States as a sovereign nation?

With great respect and honor, and we would hope to receive the same treatment from them.

What message would you like to share with the youth of your tribe?

I would like to encourage you to utilize your education and seek out your personal goal in life, whatever it may be. You are the future of our people; always remember where you come from and be proud of your Otoe–Missouria heritage.

Is there anything else you would like to add?

I would like to say thank you for asking me to be a part of this. It’s been great honor for me. May God continue to bless you and your families in the days to come. Aho!

Thank you. It's an honor for the museum. 


All photos are courtesy of the Otoe–Missouria Tribe and are used with permission.

To read other interviews in this series, click on the banner below. Meet-native-america
From left to right: Representative Ponka-We Victors (Tohono O’odham/Southern Ponca) taking the oath of office in the Kansas House of Representatives; photo courtesy of Kansas Rep. Scott Schwab. Bird Runningwater (Cheyenne/Mescalero Apache) at the Sundance Film Festival; photo courtesy of WireImage. Sergeant Debra Mooney (Choctaw) at the powwow in Al Taqaddum Air Force Base, Iraq, 2004; photo courtesy of Sgt. Debra Mooney. Councilman Jonathan Perry (Wampanoag) in traditional clothing; photo courtesy of Jonathan Perry. Suzan Shown Harjo (Cheyenne/Hodulgee Muscogee) at Blackhorse et al. v. Pro Football, Inc., press conference, U.S. Patent and Trade Office, February 7, 2013; photo courtesy of Mary Phillips. All photos used with permission.         

Comments (0)

    » Post a Comment

August 14, 2014

Meet Native America: Stephen R. Ortiz, Chairman, Prairie Band Potawatomi Nation

In the interview series Meet Native America, the Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian invites tribal leaders, cultural figures, and other interesting and accomplished Native individuals to introduce themselves and say a little about their lives and work. Together, their responses illustrate the diversity of the indigenous communities of the Western Hemisphere, as well as their shared concerns, and offer insights beyond what’s in the news to the ideas and experiences of Native people today. —Dennis Zotigh 

Steve Ortiz a
Chairman Stephen R. Ortiz, Prairie Band Potawatomi Nation. Photo by Nathan Ham Photography, courtesy of the Prairie Band Potawatomi Nation.

Please introduce yourself with your name and title.

Stephen R. Ortiz. I've served on the Prairie Band Potawatomi Tribal Council for the past 15 years—as secretary from1998 to 2006, then as chairman from 2007 to 2014. The new chairman will be chosen in a run-off election later this month. 

Can you share with us your Native name, its English translation, and/or your nickname?

Mon-wah M’jessepe, Wolf Clan. It means Dark Wolf that Travels along Big Bad River at Night that Travelers Hear Rustle along the Riverbank Scouting.

Where is your nation located?

Our Government Center is in Mayetta, Kansas, located in northeast Kansas.

Where were the Prairie Potawatomi originally from?

The Great Lakes region.

What is a significant point in history from your nation that you would like to share?

As I was told by my family elders, all Potawatomis who did not flee elsewhere in the 1800s were gathered up and relocated to Kansas. Upon getting to Kansas, a split occurred when the U.S. government offered the Potawatomis citizenship and land in Oklahoma. The Potawatomis who chose to stay and not accept the offer became known as the Prairie Band Potawatomi Indians. The U.S. government surrounded the Prairie Band Potawatomis, who were willing to fight and not to go to Oklahoma.

At this point for some reason the U.S. government left the Prairie Band Potawatomi in Kansas and granted them a reservation. The reservation was 30 square miles—later reduced to 11 square miles, where we are today. In 1998 the tribal government consisted of 85 employees and had a $2.1-million annual budget. Today we stand at 1,021-plus employees working for the Prairie Band Potawatomi Nation in our government operations, healthcare facility, casino, and Economic Development Corporation.

How is your tribal government set up?

A tribal constitution was established creating a General Council membership who vote for seven Tribal Council members—chair, vice-chair, secretary, treasurer, and three members—to perform the duties described in our constitution.

Is there a functional, traditional entity of leadership in addition to your modern government system?

No.

How often are elected leaders chosen?

A Tribal Council term is four years, and council seat elections are staggered so that there is an election every 2 years. The order is that the chairman, secretary, and one council member are voted on in one election, then vice-chair, treasurer, and the remaining two council members in the next election.

How often does your Tribal Council meet?

Tribal Council meetings are held twice a month and as needed depending on the situation. General Council meetings are held four times a year, and special General Council meetings can be called as needed. 

What responsibilities do you have as a tribal leader?

To protect the Prairie Band Potawatomi Nation's rights inherent in the United States Constitution, our treaty rights, and other rights that arise from statutory law, executive order, tribal or other law, and judicial administration. To ensure that those rights will be fully protected, exercised, and preserved; to ensure justice and our security; to maintain Potawatomi traditions and customs; to promote harmony, the common good, and social and general welfare; and to secure the blessings of spiritual, educational, cultural, and economic development for ourselves and our posterity. 

I have also tried to serve Indian Country through work on the Secretary's Tribal Advisory Committee of the Department of Health and Human Services (where I am co-chairman), the Oklahoma City Inter-Tribal Health Board (vice-chairman), the advisory team on Tribal Consultation Policy for the Department of the Interior (member/alternate), the National Indian Gaming Commission Health and Safety Committee, and Kansas Governor Sam Brownback's Council of Economic Advisors. 

Ft Riley Day 11-12 a
Members of the U.S. Army 1st Infantry Division host Chairman Ortiz and other members of the Prairie Band Potawatomi Nation to honor Native American Heritage Month and the contributions of Native servicemen and -women. Fort RIley, Kansas; November 27, 2012. Chairman Ortiz was guest speaker for the event. Photo courtesy of the Prairie Band Potawatomi Nation.

How did your life experience prepare you to lead your nation?

I served in the U.S. Marines Corps from 1969 to 1971 and left with an honorable discharge and the rank E-3, then from 1973 to 1975 in the U.S. Army Reserves, 410th Evacuation Hospital unit (SMBL), honorable discharge, specialist E-5. I graduated from Washburn University in Topeka, Kansas, with a Bachelor of Business Administration, then went on to work 24 years in the corporate world with IBM as an administrative assistant, with Kansas Power & Light as an area manager, then with Hallmark Cards, Inc., as a plastics manufacturing section manager.

These experiences gave me insight into working with others to manage an ongoing operation for a profit, leadership skills to develop personnel to run an ongoing operation, customer satisfaction skills, and what brand loyalty can do to overcome competition. 

Who inspired you as a mentor?

My uncles, who were leaders in the Native American Church, and who gave me my ceremony and my Indian name when I was six months old.

Are you a descendant of a historical leader? If so, who?

Yes, I'm a descendant of Chief Shab-eh-nay through my grandmother Minnie Wahwassuck Jessepe.

Approximately how many members are in your nation?

There are 4,729 enrolled members.

What are the criteria to become a member of your nation?

Members must have 1/4 degree Prairie Band Potawatomi blood from the 1940 rolls.

Is your language still spoken on your homelands? If so, what percentage of your people would you estimate are fluent speakers?

The Potawatomi language is spoken fluently by 1 to 2 percent of the Prairie Potawatomi.

What economic enterprises does your nation own?

The nation's economic enterprises include the Prairie Band Potawatomi Casino and Resort, a propane company, two convenience stores and gas stations, health contracting services, and two smoke shops.

What annual events do the Prairie Band Potawatomi sponsor?

We host the Prairie Band Potawatomi Pow Wow every year in early June.

What attractions are available for visitors on your land?

In addition to the casino and annual pow wow, we manage a buffalo program with a herd of some 200 bison. 

NA Day At Capital-2012 b
Representatives of the Iowa Tribe, Kickapoo Tribe, Prairie Potawatomi Band Nation, and Sac and Fox Nation join Governor Sam Brownback for the signing of the proclamation creating the first Native American Day at the Capitol. Topeka, Kansas, February 8, 2012. Photo courtesy of the Office of the Governor.


How does your nation deal with the United States as a sovereign nation?

Over the years, Tribal Councils have developed working relationships with key regional directors of U.S. agencies and departments in the U.S. government and Kansas state government, including the governor. The Prairie Band Potawatomi Nation has also taken the state of Kansas to the U.S. Supreme Court over issues. 

What message would you like to share with the youth of your nation?

Developing communication skills is key to leadership and resolving conflict. Understanding that all enrolled members, living on the reservation or off, are entitled to be treated fairly and are entitled to services set forth by guidelines. If you are elected to Tribal Council, leave your conflicts with others at the front door and work for the benefit of all, both on and off the reservation.

Is there anything else you would like to add? 

Our tribe has a number of community programs, including a financial assistance program to support members in their education, free rent to tribal elders who are disabled, a tribal meals program, and quarterly per capita payments to all members. We offer health care services to non-tribal members with insurance. The Prairie Band Potawatomi Nation's social service programs providing Tribal Victim Services and SAFESTAR (Sexual Assault Forensic Examinations, Support, Training, Access, and Resources) have been cited for excellence by the U.S. Department of Justice and the Kansas Coalition Against Sexual and Domestic Violence

Due to the cooperation of Tribal Council members over the past 15 years, the Prairie Band Potawatomi Nation is debt-free at this time.

Thank you. 


To read other interviews in this series, click on the banner below. 
Meet-native-america
From left to right: Representative Ponka-We Victors (Tohono O’odham/Southern Ponca) taking the oath of office in the Kansas House of Representatives; photo courtesy of Kansas Rep. Scott Schwab. Bird Runningwater (Cheyenne/Mescalero Apache) at the Sundance Film Festival; photo courtesy of WireImage. Sergeant Debra Mooney (Choctaw) at the powwow in Al Taqaddum Air Force Base, Iraq, 2004; photo courtesy of Sgt. Debra Mooney. Councilman Jonathan Perry (Wampanoag) in traditional clothing; photo courtesy of Jonathan Perry. Suzan Shown Harjo (Cheyenne/Hodulgee Muscogee) at Blackhorse et al. v. Pro Football, Inc., press conference, U.S. Patent and Trade Office, February 7, 2013; photo courtesy of Mary Phillips. All photos used with permission. 

Comments (0)

    » Post a Comment

August 07, 2014

Meet Native America: Antonio Quinde, Anthropologist and Member of the Cañari Community of Quilloac, Ecuador

In the interview series Meet Native America, the Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian invites tribal leaders, cultural figures, and other interesting and accomplished Native individuals to introduce themselves and say a little about their lives and work. Together, their responses illustrate the diversity of the indigenous communities of the Western Hemisphere, as well as their shared concerns, and offer insights beyond what’s in the news to the ideas and experiences of Native people today. 

Antonio Quinde was the first president of ECUANARI, the Confederation of Kichwa Peoples of Ecuador, and rector of the Instituto Superior Tecnológico Pedagógico Intercultural Bilingüe Quilloac (Institute for Intercultural and Bilingual Technology and Teaching, Quilloac). Judy Blankenship recorded this interview—the blog's first with a South American leader—on June 15, 2014, in Cañar, Ecuador, and translated and edited it for the museum. The photographs are also by Judy and are used with permission.—Dennis Zotigh 

Please introduce yourself and tell us where you're from. 

My name is José Antonio Quinde Buscán, and I am an anthropologist of the Andean culture. My community is Quilloac, in the Province of Cañar. It's in southern Ecuador at an altitude of 10,100 feet in the Andes Mountains.

image from http://s3.amazonaws.com/hires.aviary.com/k/mr6i2hifk4wxt1dp/14090918/1da205c7-e3f9-4cb8-88bc-bf28033d9307.png
Antonio Quinde in his village, Quilloac, in the mountains of Cañar Province, Ecuador.


What is a significant point in history from your community that you would like to share? 

Quilloac is an ancient indigenous community with an interesting history. When the Inkas invaded our territory in 1463, we maintained the rights to our land. But with the Spanish conquest that soon followed, in 1534, the conquistadors appropriated our land and established the largest hacienda in the region—450,000 hectares [more than one million acres]. This led to two kinds of communities: those that belonged to the hacienda, where everyone was required to work the land as peons, and those that were “free” and not part of the hacienda. 

The problem with the free villages, such as Quilloac, was that the colonial Spanish government forced our people to work on roads, bridges, and mines. But when the Cañaris left their homes, they often did not return because they died of hunger, snakebites, landslides, and diseases such as malaria. For this reason, many free communities handed over their land in return for the protection of the hacienda owner. That is how Quilloac lost our territory and Pachamama [Earth Mother].

Five hundred years later, in 1964, we began to recover our land through the agrarian reform laws of Ecuador. The government bought the hacienda and divided it into parcels of land for the members of Quilloac and other communities. We had to buy the land back, but in that way we reclaimed our Pachamama.

How is your government set up?  

Traditionally, Cañaris were governed by the ayllu, based on the extended families of the village or a particular area. The head of the ayllu was the oldest member of the village, the one who best knew the history, problems, and healing traditions. This was a part of all Andean cultures in Bolivia, Peru, and Ecuador. 

Today, each Cañari community has a governing body elected by a general assembly that includes all who live there. In Quilloac, for example, we are about 600 families, so we are divided into five sectors, and each sector elects a president, vice president, treasurer, and so on. These elected authorities meet every two weeks, the community of each sector meets every three months, and all the communities come together in a general assembly every two years.

Is there still a functional, traditional entity of leadership, in addition to your modern government system?  

The most traditional aspect of our government is community rule, based on our Andean culture. Through this structure we organize mingas—communal work days—but it also serves to reinforce unity, solidarity, reciprocity, and identity. No one is every alone in our Cañari communities. 

What responsibilities do you have as a community leader 

As a leader, I have always struggled for the rights, education, identity, and respect that we Cañaris deserve as an indigenous nation of Ecuador. I’m concerned for our history, our customs, traditions, and legends, because the Cañari culture should be recognized on the national level, and by all of Latin America. We have significant archeological sites, some recognized by UNESCO. Narrío, for example, is an ancient burial site on the outskirts of Cañar that goes back 5,000 years. Fragments of Native life that date to 10,000 years ago have been found in the cave Chobshi. The most famous site in Ecuador is Ingapirca, a religious center for both Cañaris and Inkas. 

  image from http://s3.amazonaws.com/hires.aviary.com/k/mr6i2hifk4wxt1dp/14090919/42b19d94-c734-4e7a-84bf-9aea4d8999c8.pngAntonio Quinde working in the library at his home. 

Who inspired you as a mentor? 

Many elders have influenced me, such as my parents and grandparents and others in the community who have taught me the best way to live. I only regret that we have not researched our history before. But living on the hacienda prevented us from knowing our history and our traditions. The Spanish conquistadores tried to do away with our religion and our language.

Is your language still spoken on your lands? If so, what percentage of your people would you estimate are fluent speakers? 

We Cañaris have two languages—three, really. Of our original Cañari language, we have left only a few place names and surnames. Almost 60 percent of us speak Kichwa, the language of the Inkas, and a few Cañari words remain in use, such as the words for dog and water. It’s very important to maintain our Kichwa language while researching our original language. In this sense, we have demanded that the Ecuadorian government provide bilingual education [Kichwa–Spanish] especially in Cañar. Kichwa is a “complete” language, with a vocabulary of scientific names in mathematics, biology, chemistry, and philosophy.  Mathematics is especially important to the Cañaris, who use a taptana [a small wooden board with circular openings for stones or markers ] to add and multiply. In Ecuador, only the Cañaris use the taptana.

What annual events does your community observe?

We celebrate four important fiestas every year. Kapak Raymi, in December around the time of the winter solstice, traditionally marked the transition of children to adolescence. This fiesta also honors the sun and the coming rainy season. In the spring, Pawkar Raymi celebrates the planting of our crops. Inti Raymi falls in June at the time of the summer solstice and honors the harvest. Killa Raymi, in September, is the fiesta of the moon and honors the women, or mamacunas, in our culture. We consider the moon as feminine and the sun as masculine. From the hacienda days the Catholic Church incorporated or replaced indigenous traditions with their own religious holidays. Kapak Raymi was replaced by Christmas, Pawkar Raymi by Carnival or the beginning of Lent, and Inti Raymi is around the same time as Corpus Christi.

How does the Cañari community deal with the government of Ecuador?

We Cañaris don’t have much of a relationship with our central government because of a long history of marginalization of indigenous people, not just in Ecuador but in all of Latin America. When the Spanish invaded they tried to finish off the Native people, to liquidate us, and this colonization continues today by the imposition of traditions and customs that are foreign to us. So we don’t have good relations with, or the support of, our government. For example, the new constitution does not include the right to a bilingual Spanish–Kichwa education.

What message would you like to share with the youth of your community?

I tell young people they should not abandon the seven ancestral principals to live by: reciprocity, unity, solidarity, equality, dignity, identity, and complementarity, and they should apply them to today’s reality. They must demonstrate, to our country and to the world, who we are as Cañaris. 

Thank you.


Judy Blankenship is a documentary photographer and writer who has worked and lived in Cañar during two Fulbright research periods and various projects with Cañari educators for the National Museum of the American Indian. Her most recent collaboration is the bilingual Kichwa–English book The Cañar Nation and  Its Cultural Expressions, published in 2013 by the museum. Judy and her husband, Michael, now live six months of every year in Cañar.

To read other interviews in the series Meet Native America, click on the banner below. Meet-native-america
From left to right: Representative Ponka-We Victors (Tohono O’odham/Southern Ponca) taking the oath of office in the Kansas House of Representatives; photo courtesy of Kansas Rep. Scott Schwab. Bird Runningwater (Cheyenne/Mescalero Apache) at the Sundance Film Festival; photo courtesy of WireImage. Sergeant Debra Mooney (Choctaw) at the powwow in Al Taqaddum Air Force Base, Iraq, 2004; photo courtesy of Sgt. Debra Mooney. Councilman Jonathan Perry (Wampanoag) in traditional clothing; photo courtesy of Jonathan Perry. Suzan Shown Harjo (Cheyenne/Hodulgee Muscogee) at Blackhorse et al. v. Pro Football, Inc., press conference, U.S. Patent and Trade Office, February 7, 2013; photo courtesy of Mary Phillips. All photos used with permission. 

Comments (0)

    » Post a Comment