Canku Ota

(Many Paths)

An Online Newsletter Celebrating Native America


May 19, 2001 - Issue 36



"Hon Dah"






"When your brother falls behind you don't leave him there. Wait for him to catch up."
Albert Ward Mic Mac Elder

We Salute
Irvin D. Harrison

Irvin Harrison came to Albuquerque to work, not to attend school, when he moved from his native Farmington and joined the staff of the University of New Mexico in 1995.

Saturday, May 12, Harrison graduated magna cum laude with a bachelor's degree and a long list of awards and honors under his belt. He also delivered the commencement address.


The information here will include items of interest for and about Native American schools. If you have news to share, please let us know! I can be reached by emailing:


John Nieto

John Nieto is widely regarded as one of the most accomplished and exciting contemporary artists in the United States. An innovative interpreter of his native southwest, Nieto's dramatic compositions and bold use of color translate classic American themes into unmistakably modern images that somehow escape the boundaries of time.


Sugarbush Ishkigamizige-giizis
by Jim Northrup

I just call it the woods. It is where my maw, my grammaws, and all the grammaws before them came from. Going home I am when I go to the woods.

Spring returns to the north woods of Minnesota. Sure enough, the Shinnobs in this HUD house are excited about going to the sugar bush.



Teachers Are Offered Wonderful Opportunities to Teach in Indian Country

Last spring, the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) Office of Indian Education Programs (OIEP) moved from Washington, D.C. to Albuquerque, New Mexico. The new southwest location enticed two very special people to it. Barbara Parisian (Blackfeet) and Darrell Flyingman (Choctaw), are both dedicated to educating American Indian youth, and were ready to take on their new challenge; filling vacancies in the BIA school system. But how?


Record Number of Indians Graduating

Great Falls, MT - A record number of Native American students - 62 - is graduating this year from Great Falls Public Schools. In the next few weeks, 28 students will graduate from Great Falls High School, 20 from C.M. Russell High School and 14 from Skyline Education Center. Last year, 54 Native American students graduated.

"That's the highest ever," said Gloria Burrows, secretary for the Great Falls Indian education program. "This is really good news."

In a traditional celebration, students were presented with eagle feathers.



Cheyenne River Buffalo Project Earns Recognition

The Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe's buffalo restoration project, Pte Hca Ka, has been named one of 99 semifinalists in the Innovations in American Government Awards, which recognizes original and effective initiatives at all levels of government.


U.S. Mint Strikes New American Buffalo Commemorative Coin

United States Mint Director Jay W. Johnson today hosted a ceremony at the U.S. Mint in Denver to strike the first American Buffalo Commemorative Coin.



Breathing Sacred Language

TUCSON, Ariz. - When Hopi surveyed their young people to determine how many were speaking the Hopi language, statistics for youths 19 and younger were staggering.

"We found out teen-agers on down couldn't speak Hopi at all," said Leigh Kuwanwisiwma, Hopi cultural preservation director.


Yavapai Survived Against Great Odds

TUCSON, Ariz. - They were murdered by the Cavalry's poisoned sugar. Those who survived were marched to San Carlos. When they danced in ceremonies, the soldiers thought they were performing the Ghost Dance.

"They killed a lot of Yavapai. We are an endangered species."



Language Holds Universal Mysteries

TUCSON, Ariz. - When Ronnie Lupe was a little boy, it was the words of the Apache language that carried the history of his grandmother hiding in the mountains during the battle to end all battles.

Again, it was the Apache words, spoken by the Cibecue medicine man who knew one of 32 ways of healing, that shared the great mystery.


Lessons of a Cheyenne Tribe

La Crescenta, CA - One by one, the students stepped up to the burning sweet grass and pulled the smoke toward them with four scooping motions.

"That was cool," Chad Cummins, a Monte Vista fifth-grader said as he walked away.

What the students had participated in was a purifying ceremony that the Cheyenne people begin their day.



Arctic Bay Teen Tours Canada in Youth Corps

IQALUIT — The last seven months have led Kenny Allurut of Arctic Bay from one adventure to the next.

Allurut, 18, left Arctic Bay last October to join Katimavik, Canada’s youth service program.

"I wanted to travel and meet new people," Allurut said.

And that’s what he did.


Counselor Challenges Students

On the northernmost edge of Arizona, Page High School is a feeder to Ivy League colleges. The Ivies are always looking for smart and talented Native American students.

Page High is 70 percent Native American, almost all from Page or the adjacent Navajo Reservation. Some students are bused from 50 miles each way.



Group Seeks Alaska Course in Schools

ANCHORAGE, Alaska - A coalition of Anchorage groups, spurred by the January paint ball attack on Alaska Natives, proposed that the Anchorage School District add a required high school course to teach students about Alaska cultures and history.

The attack this winter, by two white male teenagers and a young white man, shocked the town. The three recorded their activities on videotape.


Cherokee 'Angels' Lift Up Tribe

TAHLEQUAH -- Their chief refers to them as special "Cherokee angels."

The two dozen singers who make up the Cherokee National Children's Choir are messengers of sorts. Besides making good, harmonious music, the fifth- through eighth-graders from schools throughout the 14-county Cherokee Nation are on a mission for the tribe.



Site Selected for Navajo Theme Park at 2002 Olympics

SALT LAKE CITY - Things could not have worked out better for the Navajo Nation's plans at the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City, officials said.

A site has been selected for the tribe's theme park in the Gateway Project, located in downtown Salt Lake City.

The tribal council allocated $1.75 million in 1998 for the Navajo Nation to be a part of the Olympics. Part of that money was used to obtain contractors to work on behalf of the Navajo Nation.


Five to be Inducted into Area Hall of Fame

It's been more than a half-century since some of the guys took a cut at a fastball or kicked up a cloud of dust sliding into home plate.

But revered Indian sandlot ballplayers from the 1930s to the 1960s will receive honorable mention as five other athlete role models are inducted into the Southern California Latino / Native American Sports Hall of Fame. The names of some three dozen Morongo Reservation ballplayers will be called and their pictures displayed during a banquet.



A Native Treasure Returns Home

STOCKHOLM - A group of fair-haired schoolchildren rushes toward the seats around a totem pole in the National Museum of Ethnography here. They settle in to hear the story of how the totempolen, as its called in Swedish, came from Canada 70 years ago, and how it will soon return.


Natives Help Spruce up Aging Totem Poles

Ketchikan, AK -- For years totem poles have told their stories.

Those stories have lasted for generations among the Natives of Southeast Alaska. But while the traditional accounts remain, many of the totems that described them do not.



Anthropologist leaves life's work to tribe

IGNACIO, CO – A young anthropologist just beginning his career came here in 1961 to document the Southern Ute Indian language – a language that had never before been written down.


History & Culture of the Sisseton-Wahpeton Sioux Tribe

In the studying the culture of a person, it is well to understand him for what he is today as compared to what he was yesterday. In other words, understanding the evolution of his culture is primary.



About This Issue's Greeting - "Hon Dah"


The Anglo theory is the Apache Indian migrated to the Southwest from Northern Canada in the 1500's. The Apache Indian history says it was the other way around, that most of the Athapaskan speaking people migrated to the North and a few stayed in their homeland. In any event, it is generally agreed that about 5,000 Apaches lived in the Southwest at the end of the 1600's.

This Date In History


Recipe: Ice Cream!!


Story: Turtle's Race With Bear


What is this: Snapping Turtle


Project: The Beading Series - Part 6


This Issue's Web sites




"OPPORTUNITIES" is from sources distributed nationally and includes scholarships, grants, internships, fellowships, and career opportunities as well as announcements for conferences, workshops and symposia.




  Canku Ota is a free Newsletter celebrating Native America, its traditions and accomplishments . We do not provide subscriber or visitor names to anyone. Some articles presented in Canku Ota may contain copyright material. We have received appropriate permissions for republishing any articles. Material appearing here is distributed without profit or monetary gain to those who have expressed an interest. This is in accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. section 107.  

Canku Ota is a copyright © 2000, 2001 of Vicki Lockard and Paul Barry.



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