Indigenous Peoples Weekend with the MuseumOctober 9-11, 2021
Join us at the Museum and online to explore stories about Native Americans and the American Revolution, as part of Indigenous Peoples Weekend.
Traditional Haudenosaunee Dancers
Onsite | Saturday at 11 a.m., 2 p.m. and 3:30 p.m. & Sunday at 11 a.m.
Join us at select times throughout Saturday as a contingent of indigenous dancers sponsored by the Oneida Indian Nation will perform traditional Haudenosaunee (Iroquois) social dances on the Museum’s outdoor plaza. Performances are free and open to the public.
Wampum Belt Demonstration with Richard Hamell
Onsite | Saturday & Sunday (UPDATE: the Sunday demonstration has been cancelled)
Meet craftsman Richard Hamell, who will present a display of replica wampum belts and discuss their history and importance to native communities as tools of diplomacy and culture. Hamell will demonstrate for visitors how to create reproduction wampum belts using acrylic clay wampum beads. Watch a recent demonstration Hamell did about making a pony bead wampum belt with our friends at Ganondagan State Historic Site.
Discovery Cart: Two Kettles Together
Onsite | Daily
Join a Museum educator at a discovery cart featuring replica artifacts and documents to learn about Tyonajanegen (Two Kettles Together), an Oneida woman who participated in the violent Battle of Oriskany during the Saratoga Campaign.
In-Gallery 10-Minute Talk: Louis Cook
Onsite | Daily
Join a Museum educator to hear more about the life of Akiatonharónkwen, also commonly known as Louis Cook, who was one of the highest-ranking Native American officers in the Continental forces during the Revolutionary War. Born to an African American father and Abenaki Indian mother, Akiatonharónkwen fought in the French and Indian War (1754-1763) as a young man. Discover the path he chose in the Revolutionary War as British and Revolutionary leaders courted him as an ally.
Oneida Nation Gallery
Onsite | Daily
In the Museum’s core exhibition, visitors can explore an immersive multimedia gallery about the Oneida Indian Nation’s debate over whether or not to break away from the Six Nations Confederacy to support the Revolutionary cause. Listen as recreated figures representing Oneida men and women discuss the difficult choices they faced.
Watch: The People of the Standing Stone Film
Onsite | Daily, 3:30 p.m.
The People of the Standing Stone explores the crucial but little-known history of the extraordinary contributions of one Native American people who chose to commit themselves to the Revolutionary cause when nearly all others fought on the side of the British during America’s War for Independence. The moving 25-minute film was directed by Emmy Award-winning director Ric Burns and narrated by Academy Award-winning actor Kevin Costner.
The People Between: Native Americans in a Revolutionary Era Gallery Guide
Onsite & Online | Daily
More than 250,000 Native Americans lived east of the Mississippi River during the Revolutionary era. They formed more than 80 nations and spoke dozens of languages. The decades of political turmoil and warfare that divided Great Britain and its colonies and led to the creation of the United States profoundly affected native people. Use this gallery guide to explore their stories throughout the Museum and in our Virtual Museum Tour.
Make Your Own Wampum Belt Craft
Online | Anytime
Wampum beads — purple and white beads made from seashells or (later) glass — were woven into patterns on belts to commemorate agreements between different communities of Native Americans and Europeans. Native American nations, such as the Oneida Nation, would design these belts to document what they discussed with others. This craft activity, developed in consultation with Native American advisors, will help you learn some wampum vocabulary while coloring in your own symbols and messages.