The Smithsonians National Museum of the
American Indian has dedicated new enhancements to Allies in
War, Partners in Peace, a monumental bronze sculpture -- already
a visitor favorite -- which commemorates the alliance between the
Oneida Indian Nation and the United States during the American Revolution.
in War, Partners in Peace
Pictured left to right: Ray Halbritter, Oneida Indian Nation
Council; Kevin Gover, Director, National Museum of the American
Indian; Dr. Wilson Stephens, Oneida Indian Nation; Brian Patterson,
Oneida Indian Nation Council.
The Oneida Indian Nation donated the bronze statue to commemorate
the opening of the museum in 2004. Created by Edward Hlavka from
St, George, Utah, Allies in Peace, Partners in War,
stands 20 feet tall and weighs 1,925lbs. George Washington
stands alongside the Oneida diplomat, Oskanondonha, or Skenandoah,
and Polly Cooper--an Oneida woman who came to the aid of Washingtons
troops at Valley Forge in 1777-78. With the Oneida Nations
continued support, the museum has installed an interpretive surround,
enhancing the storytelling of the historic alliance with light,
sound, and projected imagery.
"This enhanced interpretation provides an immersive experience
for visitors to understand this countrys rich history, so
that there is a deeper understanding of the nuance, texture and
depth of that history an understanding that goes beyond the
two-dimensional stories that too often oversimplify how this great
country was founded, said Ray Halbritter, Oneida Indian Nation
Representative and Nation Enterprises CEO. This exhibit commemorates
the friendship that was forged between the Oneida Nation and the
United States during the Revolutionary War, as well as the incredible
sacrifices made by our ancestors during the founding of our country.
Visitors will also learn about Polly Cooper who chose to stay
with the American army and cooked and cared for the sick and suffering
soldiers. The Oneidas historical generosity continues to this
With the Oneidas gift the Smithsonians National
Museum of the American Indian is able to animate this story in a
compelling way for our visitors, said Kevin Gover, director
of the museum. We are ever grateful for their generosity.
More than 125 specialty lights illuminate the myriad symbols
incorporated in the statue. Six digital projectors wash the curved
walls of the alcove with images of the indigenous landscape filled
with flora and fauna, then battle scenes of the Oneida and Americans
fighting the British side-by-side and visions of hope for the future.
Incorporated in the space is an assistive listening system for the
The new presentation of Allies in War, Partners in Peace
is possible by the generous support from the Oneida Indian Nation.
Allies in War, Partners in Peace, originally presented
to the museum in 2004, is a gift from the Oneida Indian Nation.