Podcast: Tracing Indigenous History

Evan Pritchard

Evan Pritchard

Anthropologist Evan Pritchard is a descendant of the Mi’kmaq people, who are part of the Algonquin nation, and has taught Native American studies at Pace University, Vassar College and Marist College. He is the author, most recently, of Mapping Native New York. In this conversation with Michael Turton, he details the history of Native American people in the Hudson Valley.

2 thoughts on “Podcast: Tracing Indigenous History

  1. Thank you for sharing these insights! I recommend listening to the end so you can hear Evan’s reed flute.

    My fourth-grader thinks Evan’s assessment of teaching native culture in schools was a bit too pessimistic. He welcomed Evan coming to Haldane to quiz his class to see what they have learned.

    I would like to hear about where the treaty rights conversation stands in this region. Are there any land back efforts underway?

    • Pritchard responds: “I send out a big hurray to Haldane. I don’t need to quiz them to know that they are excellent on the subject, but it might be fun anyhow.”

      For the land-treaty question, there have been no official discussions of past treaties, but Pritchard referred us to the Ramapo-Munsee Heritage Gallery in Stony Point, which noted that on June 4, Maqua (Chief) Dwaine Perry and Owl Steve Dennison Smith of the Ramapo-Munsee Lunaape Nation will host a ceremony to receive an original deed from 1737 for land in today’s Towns of Ramapo and Suffern and the Townships of Mahwah and Ringwood, New Jersey. The deed represents land purchased from the tribe that in 1763 was bought by Stephen Sloat. Four Sloat descendants are giving the document to “its rightful owners, the Ramapo-Munsee Lunaape Nation.”

      “We are taking a first step in the repair work that beneficiaries of settler colonialism should be doing all across this country,” said the Rev. Jack Zamboni, on behalf of his family. Chief Perry said: “Perhaps the most astonishing factor arising from the deed is the inherent fact that without my Ramapo ancestors’ cooperation, George Washington and the rebels would not have had use of the Ramapo Pass, and thus no way of preventing the British from receiving logistical and strategic advantage needed for success in the naissance of the American Revolution.”

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