Everyone's heard of Lewis and Clark.
Not everyone's heard of the Nez Perce woman who spoke up and told her tribe to let the starving explorers live. Nor do most know the name of the Mandan chief who advised Meriwether Lewis on how to conduct himself on the trail.
Odds are your history teachers may not have pressed home the point that Lewis never quite understood the ways of doing business in Indian Country. For instance, when the expedition hired local Natives to carry their bags, customs for contracting help were a little different. The law of the land was that for their service, workers were allowed to reach into the bag they carried to extract an item they deemed as fair pay.
Lewis called them thieves.
As the 200-year commemoration rolls out, many tribes along the trail are concerned about protecting sensitive cultural sites that could be trampled by over-eager fans of the trail. For other tribes along the trail, many have been moved far from their aboriginal homes that had been on valuable waterways. Others can only mourn their homelands, which are now flooded by dams that transformed rivers into lakes.
In a joint effort between the Native American Journalists Association and the National Association of Tribal Historic Preservation Officers, this Native Delivered News wire service was made possible.
The intention is to provide a collection of American Indian perspectives on the current events surrounding the Lewis and Clark observances.
Many Nations: News From the Lewis and Clark Trail will strive to cover news from the Native perspective, both modern and historical.
NAJA and NATHPO bring you the NDN wire service. The project will rely on American Indian writers and editors, along with a list of expert sources provided by NATHPO.
These stories will be available on this Web site.
(Comments on stories should be directed to Rob McDonald, editor of the project. He can be reached by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org)
The statements, opinions and points of view expressed in the articles published on this site are those of the authors and shall not be deemed to mean that they are necessarily those of NATHPO, NAJA, the publisher, editor, writers, contributors or staff. Our only liability in the event of errors shall be the correction or removal of the erroneous information after verification