A monument of 14 stones was dedicated in Prophetstown State Park in West Lafayette, Indiana to honor the 14 tribes that lived in the area on November 4, 2016.
Tribes honored in the Circle of Stones include the Ojibwe, Delaware, Kickapoo, Miami, Ottawa, Potawatomi, Shawnee, Wea, Wyandot, Winnebago, Fox, Sac, Creek and Menominee.
Erin Locke, Potawatomi, attended the ceremony with her mother, Tracy Locke. Erin wore a colorful jingle dress to the dedication, and Tracy was happy to finally see the Potawatomi being honored, reported the Lafayette Journal & Courier. Her tribe was forced out of Indiana in 1838.
“We were both excited to see something Native American at Prophetstown,” Tracy told the Courier.
A plaque on a 15th stone pays tribute to unidentified tribes and reads: “For those who stood with the unknown tribes, but whose presence history failed to record.”
During the dedication, Sally Tuttle, chair of Indiana’s Native American Indian Affairs Commission, addressed the crowd. She said: “What I would like everybody to do is to remember this once was Native land and our ancestors lie here. And when you visit here, say ‘thank you’ to them because their sacrifices, their hardships are still in the footprints of this land.”
Hear from more people who attended the November 4 dedication, in a video by the Lafayette Journal & Courier.
“I really feel like anyone standing on the Circle of Stones today and looking out over this beautiful prairie can’t help but appreciate the land the way it looked, the importance of that land to the people at that time, and the importance of the land to the people today, both Native and non-Native,” Vicki Basman, chief of interpretation for Indian State Parks, told WLFI News 18.
The dedication ended with the release of a rehabilitated eagle.