2001 Native American Journey

On May 17th the team traveled to Lake Junaluska to meet leaders of the Cherokee Nation.  Freeman Owle spoke to the group about the current issues facing Cherokee people, including the upsurge of violence facing the Cherokee people and crime among the Cherokee young people.

The team moved on to Billings, Montana, which served as a meeting place for interviews with Crow cultural and oral historian, Lawrence Flatlip, and Dean Curtis Bear Claw, director of the documentary Warrior Chiefs in a New Age, to learn of contemporary issues facing the Native American communities.

To hear the Crow perspective on Native American history, the group traveled to Pryor, Montana to visit the Chief Plenty Coups Museum to meet Elias Goes-Ahead and Bernedet Smith, and to Little Big Horn College to meet Mardell Plainfeather, who discussed contemporary social issues.  Kitty Deernose told the team the Crows’ particular historical account of the Battle of the Little Bighorn.

While in the Northern Cheyenne community, the group met Brooke Gondara, who spoke about the various programs at Dull Knife Memorial College in Lame Deer.  A highlight of this trip was participating in an ethnobotany course in Ashland, Montana that provided a cultural account of the Northern Cheyenne’s use of botanical plants.

On May 23 the group met Jack Bailey, who took the team to the Deer Medicine Rocks Sundance Site, where Chief Sitting Bull had visions of the future struggle with the U.S. government.  At Morningstar Enterprises the team met Suzanne Trusler to discuss difficult employment issues on the reservation.

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