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Canku Ota
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(Many Paths)
An Online Newsletter Celebrating Native America
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Favorite Web Sites
collected by Paul and Vicki
Pine Ridge Center for Artists and Crafters
The Pine Ridge Center for Artists and Crafters is a 501c3 non-profit public charity created to empower and promote Lakota artists and crafters from the Pine Ridge Reservation and to preserve Lakota arts and crafts traditions through education, events and projects.
The Decolonial Atlas
The Decolonial Atlas is a growing collection of maps which, in some way, help us to challenge and re-imagine our relationships with the land, people, and state. It’s based on the premise that cartography is not as objective as we’re made to believe. The orientation of a map, its projection, the presence of political borders, which features are included or excluded, and the language used to label a map are all subject to the map-maker’s bias – whether deliberate or not. Because decolonization is a process of unlearning and rediscovering, we’re especially committed to indigenous language revitalization through toponymy – the use of place names.
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Saturn is the second-largest planet in the Solar System, and it’s the sixth planet from the Sun. Saturn is known for its spectacular rings, which are mostly composed of ice particles and rock dust. In 1997, NASA launched the Cassini–Huygens spacecraft to take pictures of Saturn and its sixty-two moons. Cassini’s images have led to many discoveries. However, the mission ended on September 15, 2017, as the space probe plunged toward Saturn, burning up as it passed through Saturn’s atmosphere.
Kids Astronomy: Saturn
"Because Saturn is bigger than the Earth, you would weigh more on Saturn than you do here. If you weigh 70 (32 kg) pounds on Earth, you would weigh 74.5 pounds (34 kg) on Saturn. Probably not as much as you thought, right?" After exploring this fun introduction to Saturn, follow the last link in the article to another about Saturn's many moons.
NASA: JPL: Cassini: The Grand Finale
This graphically-stunning site from JPL (the Jet Propulsion Lab at Caltech) and NASA tells the story of Cassini's journey, science, and mission with features, photos, videos, and audio. "On October 15, 1997, the Cassini–Huygens spacecraft was launched on an almost 7-year journey to the Saturn system. On its way, Cassini– Huygens passes Venus (twice), Earth, and Jupiter — arriving at the Saturn system in 2004."
NASA: Solar System: Planets: Saturn
"Surrounding by 53 confirmed and nine provisional moons, Saturn is home to some of the most fascinating landscapes in our solar system. From the jets of Enceladus to the methane lakes on smoggy Titan, the Saturn system is a rich source of scientific discovery and still holds many mysteries." This NASA site is an outstanding resource for school reports, and just plain fun to peruse.
NASA: Students: Saturn Fun Facts
"It is very windy on Saturn. Winds around the equator can be 1,800 kilometers per hour. That's 1,118 miles per hour! On Earth, the fastest winds 'only' get to about 400 kilometers per hour. That's only about 250 miles per hour." After you've explored these Saturn facts, follow the "Adapted From" link at the bottom of the page for more NASA content created just for kids.

Space Facts: Saturn
"While all the gas giants in our solar system have rings none of them are as extensive or distinctive as Saturn's. The rings were discovered by Galileo Galilei 1610 who observed them with a telescope. The first 'up close' view of the rings were by Pioneer 11 spacecraft which flew by Saturn on September 1, 1971."

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Emancipation Proclamation
On January 1, 1863, after three years of a brutal Civil War, President Abraham Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation (freeing Confederate slaves) that was drafted on September 22, 1862. Before the Proclamation, the North was in the war to reunite the states. But after the Proclamation, the war became a fight against slavery. This historic document helped strengthen the North’s war effort, and was a critical component of their victory.
Africans in America: The Civil War and Emancipation
This section of Africans in America (a PBS special on the history of slavery) covers the Civil War years and Abraham Lincoln's presidency. It provides a succinct summary of the events leading up to the Emancipation Proclamation and the effect it had on the war effort. "The proclamation allowed black soldiers to fight for the Union – soldiers that were desperately needed. It also tied the issue of slavery directly to the war." For the document text (and an image of it), follow the Emancipation Proclamation link at the bottom of the page. Featured Documents: The Emancipation Proclamation
"Despite this expansive wording, the Emancipation Proclamation was limited in many ways. It applied only to states that had seceded from the Union, leaving slavery untouched in the loyal border states." The National Archives & Records Administration exhibits the five-page document, and explains its significance. The site also includes links to off-site resources, articles and audio interviews that will be helpful to those writing school research papers.
Harp Week: 13th Amendment Site
The Thirteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, ratified by the required number of states on December 18, 1865, permanently abolished slavery in all states. It was created because President Lincoln and his advisors were concerned that the Proclamation Emancipation would be viewed as a temporary war measure. Visit this Harper Weekly site to explore the Emancipation Proclamation and the Thirteenth Amendment with a timeline, commentary, biographies, cartoons and illustrations.
Illustrated Civil War: The Emancipation Proclamation Activity
What compelled President Lincoln to issue the Emancipation Proclamation? Join the 140-year debate as your class divides into five groups, each arguing a different historical perspective. This activity site from includes tons of primary source documents to use as arguments, and includes complete instructions for your teacher.

Library of Congress: Lincoln Papers: Emancipation Proclamation
"Almost from the beginning of his administration, Lincoln was pressured by abolitionists and radical Republicans to issue an Emancipation Proclamation. In principle, Lincoln approved, but he postponed action against slavery until he believed he had wider support from the American Public." The complete Abraham Lincoln Papers project at the Library of Congress consists of 20,000 documents, while this online exhibit has nearly 10,000. Best click here is the timeline, which covers all of Lincoln's presidency.

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Wright Brothers
On December 17, 1903, the Wright brothers made the world’s first flight in a power-driven, heavier-than-air machine that cost about $1000 to build. With Orville at the controls and Wilbur on the ground, the plane flew 120 feet in twelve seconds. Although man had dreamt of flying for centuries, it took these two unschooled young men (bicycle shopkeepers by trade) to finally lift us off the ground.
Biography: The Wright Brothers
"Born four years apart, brothers Wilbur and Orville Wright grew up in a small town in Ohio. They shared an intellectual curiosity and an aptitude for science, at a time when the possibility of human flight was beginning to look like a reality." Start your visit with a three-minute video narrated by biographer David McCollough, then proceed to the Orville and Wilbur biographies below.
Mississippi State: The Invention of the Airplane
This site opens with a quote from German hand glider engineer Otto Lilienthal: "To invent an airplane ... is nothing. To build an airplane ... is something. But to fly ... is everything." In addition to the terrific photo gallery and exhaustive database of early aviators, I recommend The Tale of the Airplane. There you will find what the authors call a "Puritan fairy tale. It is the story of how two honest, straightforward, hard-working Americans accomplished something fantastic and magical -- creating a craft of stick and fabric that mounted the air like the chariots of the gods, opening the skies to all humankind."
National Air and Space Museum: The Wright Brothers
"How did two men, working essentially alone and with little formal scientific training, solve a problem so complex and demanding as heavier-than-air flight, which had defied better-known experimenters for centuries?" Marking the 100th anniversary of the Wright Brothers' Kitty Hawk flight of 1903, this museum site covers Who were Wilbur & Orville, Inventing a Flying Machine, and The Aerial Age. It includes biographies, interactive experiments, and classroom activities.
National Park Service: Wright Brothers National Memorial
Kill Devil Hills, North Carolina (about half way between Kitty Hawk and Nags Head) was the site of the brothers' first flight. This National Memorial (and its associated website) was erected to tell their story. "'They have done it!' ... said a witness to the first human flight. But so often had this claim proven hollow that the public was skeptical of yet another, especially after the spectacular failure of Langley's flying machine nine days earlier. Undismayed, the Wrights built an improved flyer and refined their flying skills over a field in Ohio, making 105 flights in 1904."

Scholastic: Meet the Wright Brothers
This Scholastic Teacher's Activity Guide consists of three sections: Meet the Wright Brothers, Inventing the Plane, and Build a Plane. The last activity is built around making three decisions: What shape will you make the wings? What type of engine will power your plane? How will you control your plane? "Wilbur came up with many of his flying ideas by watching buzzards soar along the cliffs of the Great Miami River in Dayton, Ohio. Wilbur noticed how the birds adjusted their direction by changing the shape and position of their wings. To make a turn, the birds would turn one wing tip up and one wing tip down. Wilbur went home and experimented by twisting a long, thin cardboard box the same way."

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Ellis Island
Today’s online field trip takes us to Ellis Island, which served as the portal to almost all American immigrants arriving between 1892 and 1954. Although some were turned away, 98 percent of those examined at Ellis Island were allowed into the country. In 1938, my mother, along with her mother and father, were among the new arrivals.

DK Find Out!: Ellis Island
"More than a third of all Americans can trace their family history back to Ellis Island. One of the first things people saw upon arrival on Ellis Island was the Stature of Liberty." Explore Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty by clicking on any of four hotspots in this interactive feature from Dorling Kindersley. Topics include: Who Came to Ellis Island?, Traveling, Arriving, and the Great Hall.

Ellis Island Foundation
"The Museum tells the inspiring story of the largest human migration in modern history. Between 1892 and 1954, twelve million immigrants were processed at Ellis Island. Today more than 40 percent, or over 100 million, of all living Americans can trace their roots to an ancestor who came through Ellis Island." Are you the descendant of an Ellis Island immigrant? Search the Ellis Island/Port of New York Records for your family. The search function is free, but registration is required to view the results. Ellis Island
Ellis Island is explored from many different perspectives in this collection of twenty-two videos. Topics covered include The Statue of Liberty, Taking the Citizenship Oath, as well as tours of Ellis Island, and a look at the "dark underbelly" of Ellis Island as seen through the eyes of photo journalist Stephen Wilkes. The front page only shows thumbnails of a few of the videos. To see the complete set, first click "Videos (22)" then select "Show All." The interactive exhibit Then and Now, shows side-by-side photos of Ellis Island (one hundred years ago and present day) taken from the inside, the outside, and from the air.

NYPL Digital Gallery: Ellis Island Photographs
"William Williams (1862-1947) collected these photographs while he was Commissioner of Immigration for the Port of New York at Ellis Island, 1902-5 and 1909-13; they came to the [New York Public] Library with the bequest of his papers." Photographers were drawn to Ellis Island because of the variety of human stories found there. To view the pictures, click "See all Images." From the first thumbnail view, you'll need to click twice to see a full-size photo. Now you can use the Next and Previous buttons to scroll through the entire collection.

Scholastic: Interactive Tour of Ellis Island
This interactive slide show from is my pick of the week. The story of Ellis Island is told through photos, audio, and video. The clickable map guides you through seven stops, from Arrival to Journey's End. Along the way you'll learn about Ellis Island, as it was experienced by the millions of immigrants that passed through it. "The single busiest day in Ellis Island history came on April 17, 1907, when 11,747 immigrants were processed for admission into the United States. Some of them had been waiting days just to get on to the island."

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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 - 2017 of Vicki Williams Barry and Paul Barry.
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