On Monday, September 12, at Semiahmoo Park near Blaine, Washington, the Lummi Nation will bless the Healing Totem before it begins its 5,000-mile journey to the National Library of Medicine (NLM) in Bethesda, Maryland. There it will be installed as part of an exhibit called “Native Voices: Native Peoples’ Concepts of Health and Illness.” The NLM is part of the National Institutes of Health.
The Healing Totem is being carved by Jewell Praying Wolf James, who is head of the House of Tears Carvers and a longtime leader of the Lummi Indian Nation.
The exhibition at the NLM will open October 6. James has previously created Healing Totems to commemorate the victims of 9/11 that stand today in Sterling Forest, northwest of New York City, in Shanksville, Pennsylvania, and in Washington, DC’s historic Congressional Cemetery.
For more information on the project, and to follow the progress of the Healing Totem, visit the Healing Totem Journey blog at http://nlmtotem.wordpress.com/.