As Thanksgiving descends upon us yet again and we wince as the plethora of misinformation about the holiday starts falling like snowflakes in a polar vortex, one might start searching the Interwebs for some valid knowledge about Turtle Island’s original inhabitants. To this end, we bring you five websites that can start you on your way in everything from children’s books, to history, language and modern Native life. While some of these resources are specifically geared to the education sector, they make for great reading in their own right.
Curator Debbie Reese, Nambe Pueblo, reviews and evaluates books and educational materials for all grade levels. Her site covers not only specific books but also contains essays about websites, apps, educational issues, stereotype busting, and more. A great resource for parents who want to teach their children and who wish to know more themselves. Reese is also an occasional ICTMN contributor.
While last updated in 2008, this website contains current links and interesting information about dozens of tribes, literally from A to Z. Further, the site comes recommended by Reese herself.
The NMAI, part of the Smithsonian Institution, just celebrated its 20th anniversary in New York City and its 10th in Washington DC.
The museum holds a vast collection of Native artifacts, objects photographs, archives and media from the Western Hemisphere from the Arctic all the way to the southern tip of South America. One view now in New York City is an exhibit that opened on November 13, Glittering World: Navajo Jewelry of the Yazzie Family, showcasing the work of these master craftspeople through January 2016.
This site, run by a non-profit organization that is “dedicated to the survival of Native American languages, particularly through the use of Internet technology,” aims to be a “compendium of online materials about more than 800 indigenous languages of the Western Hemisphere and the people who speak them.”
So far it has made great inroads, with its comprehensive Alphabetical List of Native American Languages, its storehouse of tribal names and meanings and a page linking to Native lore from numerous tribes, among many other resources.
Lastly, this educational resource doubles as the perfect primer for a person of any age who wants to understand why the name of the Washington DC pro football team is so objectionable to American Indians. The site combines cartoons that illustrate stereotypes, plus levelheaded explanations and a detailed history of the debate that at the very least will leave a reader knowing everything that’s behind the push to change the name.