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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
National Congress of American Indians
Founded in 1944, the National Congress of American Indians is the oldest, largest and most representative American Indian and Alaska Native organization in the country. NCAI advocates on behalf of tribal governments and communities, promoting strong tribal-federal government-to-government policies, and promoting a better understanding among the general public regarding American Indian and Alaska Native governments, people and rights.
Mille Lacs Indian Reservation
Mille Lacs Indian Reservation is the popular name for the land-base for the Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe in Central Minnesota, about 100 miles (160 km) north of Minneapolis-St. Paul. The contemporary Mille Lacs Band reservation has significant land holdings in Mille Lacs, Pine, Aitkin and Crow Wing counties, as well as other land holdings in Kanabec, Morrison, and Otter Tail Counties. Mille Lacs Indian Reservation is also the name of a formal Indian reservation established in 1855. It is one of the two formal reservations on which the contemporary Mille Lacs Band retains land holdings. The contemporary Mille Lacs band includes several aboriginal Ojibwe bands and villages, whose members reside in communities throughout central Minnesota.
Cherished by broadcasters, schools, libraries, universities, individuals and institutions throughout the world. Finally the truth about First Nations people! For, By and About native people. Award-winning television documentaries and dramas. Sharing Our Stories! Please visit our website for information and to order.
Joan Naviyuk Kane
Joan Naviyuk Kane is the author of poetry and prose collections including "The Cormorant Hunter’s Wife" (2009), "Hyperboreal" (2013), "The Straits" (2015), "Milk Black Carbon" (2017), "A Few Lines in the Manifest" (2018), "Sublingual" (2018), and "Another Bright Departure" (2019). Inupiaq with family from King Island (Ugiuvak) and Mary’s Igloo, Alaska, Kane is the 2019-2020 Hilles Bush Fellow at the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study. She was a 2018 Guggenheim Fellow in Poetry.
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Tuskegee Airmen
On July 19, 1941, the U.S. Air Force began a program in Tuskegee, Alabama to train black Americans as military pilots. At the time, the Army was segregated, and only whites were allowed to fly. In the five years that followed, 992 black pilots graduated, receiving commissions and pilot wings. These black World War II pilots, who fought both fascism and racism, became known as the Tuskegee Airman.
CAF Red Tail Squadron: America's Tribute to the Tuskegee Airmen
"Like many others in the late 1930s, the individuals who become known as the Tuskegee Airmen were full of patriotic zeal and eager to join military service as the war in Europe and Asia intensified. What set them apart was that they had the passion and skill to fight the enemy from the air as pilots, something that black Americans had never been allowed to do before." This is my Tuskegee Airmen site of the day. Best reasons to visit include the Virtual Museum, and the more than 100 profiles of the American heroes we now call Tuskegee Airmen.
National Parks Service: Tuskegee Airmen
"Tuskegee is more than a town located in Macon County, Alabama. It is an idea and an ideal. It was a bold experiment and a site of major African-American achievements for over 100 years." This National Parks Service web exhibit honors three legends: Booker T. Washington, George Washington Carver, and the Tuskegee Airmen. Washington was the first principal of the African-American college that became the Tuskegee Institute. Carver was a teacher there for forty years. The Tuskegee Airmen (America's first black pilots) were named after the Institute where they began their Air Force training.
Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum: Black Wings
This Smithsonian site is a tribute to all African American Pioneer Aviators, including but not limited to the Tuskegee Airmen. "Bessie Coleman broke through the headwinds of racial prejudice as a barnstorming pilot at air shows in the 1920s. As a pilot, Bessie Coleman quickly established a benchmark for her race and gender in the 1920s. She toured the country as a barnstormer, performing aerobatics at air shows."
Tuskegee Airmen, Inc.
Tuskegee Airmen, Inc. is a national organization created in 1972 after several "well-attended Tuskegee Airmen reunions." It includes articles, photos, and a long page of stats. Best read is found at the very bottom of the Missions page (look under Briefing) which summarizes the combat record of the Tuskegee Airmen. It is too long to reproduce here, but includes the amazing fact that no bombers escorted by 332nd Fighter Group were lost.

Tuskegee Airmen: A Salute to the Red Tails
Frank Ambrose is a professional photographer who began his career as an Air Force photographer in 1943. So it is not surprising that the highlight of his Tuskegee Angels page are the photos. Visit for a an easy-to-read overview of the Tuskegee story, an explanation of why they were called the Red Tails, and of course, the photos.

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Fairy Tales and Fables
As both readers and writers, we return to fairy tale themes again and again, gleaning new meaning from each encounter. These are stories that survived and evolved for hundreds of years. Read them again (or for the first time) and discover what makes them timeless.
Aesop's Fables
"Aesop was a Greek storyteller born in approximately 620 BCE. Tradition says he was born as a slave, but developed a real talent for fables that were used to teach truths in a simple, understandable way. While Aesop was revered for his abilities, it is almost certain that many of the fables attributed to him were actually written by countless people over the ages." There are 258 fables here, categorized by subjects such as Birds, Horses, and Rabbits. Or, throw caution to the wind, and simply click on the Random Fable link.
Scholastic: Myths, Folktales, Fairy Tales
As part of their Writing with Writers series, this Scholastic project is a multi-grade resource for learning about and writing myths, folk tales and fairy tales. Grades one to three explore fairy tales and meet two authors who have re-written classic fairy tales: Jon Scieska (author of "The True Story of the Three Little Pigs") and Diane Good (author and illustrator of "Cinderella: The Dog and her Little Glass Slipper.") Similarly, grades three to six dive into folk tales while grades five through eight learn about myths. There even is an opportunity to submit your own tales for possible publication on the Scholastic site.
Storyberries: Fairy Tales (since 2014) offers "both classic and contemporary stories in an easy-to-read format with vibrant illustrations." Each fairy tale page includes an audio version, a readable version, parental warnings if the story includes any violence, discussion ideas, and links to related stories.
SurLaLune Fairy Tales
SurLaLune brings us "49 annotated fairy tales, including their histories, similar tales across cultures, modern interpretations and over 1,500 illustrations." Additionally, you can peruse electronic text from over 40 fairy tale anthologies. SurLaLune is not designed for preschoolers, but is an excellent resource for high-school students and curious grown-ups wanting to learn more about fairy tales and folklore.

University of Massachusetts: Aesop's Fables
Each year, University of Massachusetts professor Copper Giloth asks her Computers in Fine Arts students to illustrate or animate an Aesop fable, along with their own modern retelling of the story. This collection of nearly forty fables is the best of that student work dating back to 1994. This fun site is a must-see, and is a great place to start before creating your own fables. My personal favorite is "The Jay and The Peacock."

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In 1830 there were only twenty-three miles of railroad in the United States. This number grew to 30,000 miles of track by 1860. Trains hold a mystique and fascination for many: the romance of leisurely travel, the thrill of building detailed miniature models that actually run, the excitement of seeing a train pass through the countryside. Experience it all at the following railroading sites.
American Experience: Riding the Rails
"At the height of the Great Depression, more than a quarter million teenagers were living on the road in America, many crisscrossing the country by illegally hopping freight trains." This site, a companion to the PBS film of the same name, tells the story of why they left home and how they struggled to survive. Best clicks are the three Special Features (don't miss Striking a Chord: Railroads and their Musical Heritage) and the timeline which neatly summarizes the depression years of 1929 to 1940.
DK Findout: History of Trains
"The London Underground was the world’s first underground railroad. It opened in 1863 to help ease London’s busy roads of buses and trams." Enjoy five hyperlinked fun facts, and then continue your train trip by clicking on the History of Trains link near the bottom of the page. "When the first steam train was built in 1804, people were worried that the speed would make rail passengers unable to breathe or that they would be shaken unconscious by the vibrations."
Fact Republic: 25 Interesting Facts about Trains
"The Japanese bullet train system is equipped with a network of sensitive seismometers. On March 11, 2011, one of the seismometers detected an 8.9 magnitude earthquake 12 seconds before it hit and sent a stop signal to 33 trains. As a result, only one bullet train derailed that day." Each of these 25 train facts links to a source page where you can learn more.
Transit People: Train Era
For lower elementary ages, this single-page train history and self-scoring quiz is part of a larger online lesson titled "Transportation and Public Transit." To see the lessons on early transportation, cars and public transit, use the "Return to Cover" link at the bottom of the page. The entire lesson is also available in Adobe Acrobat PDF for ease of printing and use in the classroom.

Union Pacific: It's Just Railroad Talk
This lexicon of "railroad-ese" is a fun jaunt through the specialized jargon of the railroad. A "hot shot," for example, is a train that has priority over others, such as a passenger train on a tight schedule. After browsing around the glossary, check out the rest of the Union Pacific site by clicking on "General Public." There you'll discover pages of Union Pacific history along with company facts and figures. One hidden jewel is the collection of UP advertising posters dating back to 1921. Look for it in the Photo Gallery.

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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 - 2020 of Vicki Williams Barry and Paul Barry.
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