Plans - Indigenous Peoples Day Celebrations
The Racial Unity Team will be hosting the 4th annual Indigenous Peoples Day celebrations at Founders Park, Exeter, on Monday, October 9, from 12:30 to 3:30 PM. This event honors New Hampshire’s native peoples, past and present, and recognizes the Exeter Select Board’s decision to replace Columbus Day with Indigenous Peoples Day. The event is free and open to the public. As it is a school holiday, the Team encourages children to attend and participate in activities that have been planned specifically for them.
The planning for the program has been a collaboration of the Racial Unity Team, Exeter Historical Society, American Independence Museum, Exeter Public Library, Wiggin Memorial Library, and several elementary and high schools in SAU 16.
The theme of this year’s program is fauna, and it will involve activities around animal life present in the region at the time when the Pennacook-Abenaki occupied the land. Adults and children will explore elements of Native American culture and customs as they visit craft tables to create corn husk dolls, oyster shell community mobiles, tortoise shell images, and birch bark etchings. They will also have an opportunity to view animal skins, artifacts, and other displays.
Pairing art and literacy, the planning team has gifted the book “Thirteen Moons on Turtle's Back: A Native American Year of Moons” by Joseph Bruchac (author), Jonathan London (author), Thomas Locker (illustrator) to SAU16 elementary schools. It includes a suggested lesson plan for an art project around the turtle shell and the 13 moons. These lessons are geared for first and second grade learners. Plans also include the display of the artwork of students of all ages. Stratham Memorial School and Exeter Elementary Schools plan to participate. Other local elementary schools who wish to participate are welcomed to join. Exeter High School's DEIJ student group will assist with the children's activities hosted at this celebration.
The day's events begin with a land acknowledgment, which is a testament to the indigenous people who lived in the area prior to colonial settlement. Native American representation at the event will be Denise and Paul Pouliot who will begin the day's activities with an invitation to all attending. Denise is the Sag8moskwa (Head Female Speaker) and Paul is the Sag8mo (Head Male Speaker/Grand Chief) of the Cowasuck Band of the Pennacook-Abenaki People headquartered in Alton, NH. Also attending the event will be Christine Nih'shaw author, storyteller and educator. Christine identifies as Siksiká (Blackfeet) and Haudenosaunee (Iroquois), and works to preserve and cultivate indigenous languages, culture, and stories for current and future generations. Also attending will be Kathleen Blake of Dover who is a member of the Racial Unity Team Board. Kathleen identifies as Native American with tribal heritage in the Wendat, Algonquin, and Mi'kmaq First Nations.
The event ends with a “fauna scavenger hunt” throughout the town of Exeter organized by the Exeter Public Library. Book prizes will be awarded to students who complete the hunt activity successfully.
The program is made possible because of the generosity of our sponsors: William H. Donner Foundation and Official Sponsor Kennebunk Savings. For more information, visit racialunityteam.com
To volunteer or have you organization participate email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Your support and contributions will enable us to meet our operational goal of $20,000 for 2023.
Native American Boarding Schools (also known as Indian Boarding Schools) were established by the U.S. government in the late 19th century as an effort to assimilate Indigenous youth into mainstream American culture through education. This era was part of the United States’ overall attempt to kill, annihilate, or assimilate Indigenous peoples and eradicate Indigenous culture The Native American assimilation era first began in 1819, when the U.S. Congress passed The Civilization Fund Act. The act encouraged American education to be provided to Indigenous societies and therefore enforced the “civilization process".
The passing of this act eventually led to the creation of the federally funded Native American Boarding Schools and initiated the beginning of the Indian Boarding School era. The duration of this era ran from 1860 until 1978. Approximately 357 boarding schools operated across 30 states during this era both on and off reservations and housed over 60,000 native children. A third of these boarding schools were operated by Christian missionaries as well as members of the federal government. These boarding schools housed several thousand children.
To learning more about the work being done by Indigenous New Hampshire Collaborative Collective on Residential Institutions click on the buttons provided below. Kathleen Blake a Racial Unity Team Board Member is a member of Indigenous New Hampshire Collaborative Collectivitie. To read the full article about Native American Boarding Schools click on the button below.
INHCC Resource-Guide-for-Educators (pdf)Download
Exploring the Blueberry Moon and its Offerings Grade Level: K -2, Extension Grade 3-5 (pdf)Download
Teacher Guide Leaf Rubbing Unit (Science and Art) (pdf)Download
Teacher Guide Corn Husk Dolls Unit (Art, Literacy and Social Studies) Intended Grade Le (pdf)Download
Leaf Patterns English_French_Abenaki (PDF)Download
Wigwam Photos (pdf)Download
Indigenous Voices for Little Ears_ 15 Native American Children's Books (pdf)Download
What It Means to Decolonize Your Diet _ KQED (pdf)Download
Here is an opportunity to practice making corn husk dolls
Enjoy this natural treat that our Abenaki ancestors used as a survival food
Part One of Three: Contemporary Indigenous Peoples of New Hampshire: Honoring Mother Earth Through Sustainability (Saul O Sidore Memorial Lecture Series 2020-2021 in partnership with Center for the Humanities University of New Hampshire).
Paul and Denise Pouliot, Head Speakers of the Cowasuck Band of the Pennacook-Abenaki, led a group of volunteers from Indigenous New Hampshire Collaborative Collective (INHCC) through the process of building a Wigwam, a traditional indigenous home, on the property at Strawbery Banke Museum. To learn more about the project, and INHCC please visit www.indigenousnh.com.
Thank you Indigenous New Hampshire Collaborative Collective (INHCC) for your work.
This site content share educational resources about the history and lasting impacts of residential institutions and child removal as strategies for assimilation and cultural genocide of Indigenous peoples.
Have you ever wondered what kind of foods were consumed by Native Americans? While many people believe that Native Americans were exclusively hunter-gatherers, by the time of European contact many groups practiced agriculture.
The Racial Unity Team recognizes N’Dakinna (n-DA-ki-na), which is the unceded traditional ancestral homeland of the Abenaki (a-BEN-a-ki), Pennacook and Wabanaki Peoples past and present. We acknowledge and honor with gratitude the land, waterways, living beings and the Aln8bak (Al-nuh-bak), the people who have stewarded N’dakinna throughout the generations.
Exeter’s second annual Indigenous People's Day was held in Founders Park on Monday, October 11, from 1:00 to 2:30 p.m. The public was invited, including school children who had a holiday on this day.
The Racial Unity Team, in collaboration with the Exeter Historical Society, American Independence Museum, and Exeter Public Library, sponsored this event. The site of the event, on the banks of the Exeter River, features a local sculpture which depicts Founders of Exeter, including a Native American chief. The program included a land acknowledgment, a testament to the Indigenous People who populated this area prior to colonial settlement. Guests shared their stories of Native American connections. Children’s activities were hosted at craft tables under a tent. A “Water Protector” Story Walk, designed by the American Independence Museum staff, was open for exploration.