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Native American Indian Heritage Month Understanding Native American Heritage Now and Then.

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Presentation on theme: "Native American Indian Heritage Month Understanding Native American Heritage Now and Then."— Presentation transcript:

1 Native American Indian Heritage Month Understanding Native American Heritage Now and Then

2 Important Events in Native American History 1500: The Native American population of sixty million declines to approximately one million by the year 1900. 1607: First permanent English colony established at Jamestown, VA. 1622: First Indian uprising in an English colony.

3 1638: First Reservations established by Puritans near New Haven, CT. 1778: Continental Congress made first treaty with Indians (Delawares). 1830: Indian Removal Act passed which legalized removal of all Indians east of the Mississippi to lands west of the river. Important Events in Native American History

4 Important events, con’t. 1890: Wounded Knee on the Pine Ridge: Last major bloodshed involving Indians and the U.S. Government. 1924: All Indians declared citizens of the U.S. 1934: Wheeler-Howard Act was passed to protect Native Culture.

5 Native American Heritage Now and Then: Art, Music, and Dance

6 Native American Culture: The National Museum of the American Indian MISSION STATEMENT The National Museum of the American Indian is committed to Advancing knowledge and understanding of the Native cultures of the Western Hemisphere, past, present, and future, through Partnership with Native people and others. The museum works to suppose the continuance of Culture, traditional values, and transitions in contemporary native life.

7 American Indians and War “From all over the West we now stand ready 50,000 Indians between the ages of seventeen and fifty-five. We beg of you, to give us the right to fight. We guarantee to you, sir, our hearts could be for no better cause than to fight for the land we love, and for the freedom we share.” -Chief Red Fox addressing Secretary of War Newton D. Baker in Washington 1917 Library of Congress

8 American Indian Service during Wartime WW I—approximately 12,000-15,000 served. WW II –approximately 44,000 served. Korean War—approximately 10,000 to 15,000 served. Vietnam War—approximately 80,000 served. Photos courtesy of DoD Archives

9 Code Talkers In WW II, A communications code was utilized the Japanese couldn’t break. Code talkers’ messages were strings of seemingly unrelated Navajo words. Each word would be translated into English, and the message was deciphered by using only the first letter of each English word. 379 Code talkers’ served in WWII.

10 First American Indian in Space John Bennett Herrington Commander, USN, RET. First American Indian NASA astronaut Space Shuttle Mission STS-113 Endeavour November 23-December 07, 2002 Picture courtesy of NASA archive

11 First American Indian to graduate from the U.S. Naval Academy (1917). Admiral Joseph J. Clark (JJ), Cherokee Decorated with the Navy Cross, Distinguished Service Medal, Silver Star, Legion of Merit, Navy Commendation Medal, & Korean Order of Military Merit Photo courtesy of Arlington National Cemetery website

12 First Female American Indian General in the Military LaRita Aragon Cherokee and Choctaw descent Photo Courtesy of USAF

13 20 th Century American Indians distinguished by the Medal of Honor Jack C. Montgomery, Army (Cherokee) Ernest Childers, Army (Creek) Van Barfoot, Army (Choctaw) Mitchell Red Cloud, Jr., Army (Winnebago) Charles George, Army (Cherokee)

14 Present military involvement TODAY, more than 35,000 Native Americans serve in the U.S. military.

15 And continue to serve with sacrifice… PFC Lori Piestewa, 23, was the first American Indian (Hopi) to die in combat during the Iraqi conflict. She was the daughter of a Vietnam veteran and the granddaughter of a World War I veteran.

16 Prepared by Judith L. Johnson, Ph.D. on behalf of the Defense Equal Opportunity Management Institute Patrick Air Force Base, Florida November 2009 All photographs are public domain and are from various sources as cited. Opinions expressed in this report are those of the author and should not be construed to represent the official position of DEOMI, the U.S. Military services, or the Department of Defense.

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