Wednesday, April 29, 2009

New Pages & Resources

We've got a number of new resources for our members and friends. First, there is a FaceBook page for Ganondagan. Second, there is a new Twitter page as well. Go check these very cool pages out at:

Ganondagan FaceBook Page

Ganondagan Twitter Page

We've also set up a page for our Annual Native American Dance & Music Festival. The festival will take place this year on Saturday 7/25 and Sunday 7/26. There are many traditional artisans and performers already booked for the festival. Please check out our new page for full details:

Native American Dance & Music Festival

Finally, don't forget that the Ganondagan State Historic Site opens for the season on May 1st! This time of the year is a perfect time to do some trail walking to see the beautiful Spring wildflowers. Spring ephemerals are especially something not to be missed. They are perennial spring blooming plants that have a very short cycle in which they bloom and go back into a dormancy until next season. Trillium, bloodroot, hepatica (seen to the right), and others are special sights that if you hesitate, you will miss! Look for them and others along the site's trails. Enjoy!


Monday, April 13, 2009

We Shall Remain Begins Tonight

Tonight is the first episode of the PBS's American Experience, We Shall Remain. This 5-part television series shows how Native peoples resisted expulsion from their lands and fought the extinction of their culture - from the Wampanoags of New England in the 1600s to the bold new leaders of the 1970s who harnessed the civil rights movement to forge a pan-Indian identity. We Shall Remain represents an unprecedented collaboration between Native and non-Native filmmakers and involves Native advisors and scholars at all levels of the project.

For more on this series, please see the series webpage at

My DVR is set, how about yours?


Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Ohio Country Conference

I was invited to speak at the Bushy Run Battlefield-sponsored conference entitled, "The Ohio Country Conference" which is a scholarly conference that revolves around the Seven Years War in North America. I called my lecture, "A Good Salve for our Wounds- Native American involvement in the taking of Ft Niagara" and it seems to have been well received. I may condense the talk into a smaller article for the newsletter this summer.

A highlight of the lecture series was listening to Fintan O'Toole, author of "White Savage" a well researched book on the life of Sir William Johnson. What made Fintan's talk so interesting was his non-American view of the colonial period. He may have not been entirely in touch with current thinking or Native studies but he certainly was passionate about his subject.

We talked up the site and displayed Ganondagan's "banner" display and was able to pass out brochures to the 120-ish attendees.

I had mixed emotions upon attending because only a few day previous we learned that Pennsylvania was considering closing many historic sites across the state, including the Bushy Run Battlefield who were the sponsors of the conference! The Fort Pitt museum was also on the list as one of endangered sites. It is certainly a trend across the US for states to look at scraping money together from any source neccessary including historic sites. I hope in the future we can preserve our shared history in a responsible way and save these important places where our story is being preserved.