Lewis and Clark, Pinkham and Evans, Josephy


Allen Pinkham and Steve Evans
On Wednesday night Allen Pinkham and Steve Evans gave the first of what we plan to be annual lectures in honor of Alvin Josephy. Their theme—following the title of their recently published book, Lewis and Clark Among the Nez Perce: Strangers in the Land of the Nimiipu—can be seen as a direct response to Alvin’s charge in a long ago NYT book review of Stephen Ambrose’s Undaunted Courage: “[we still await] an understanding treatment (perhaps by an Indian historian), not simply of what the explorers reported but of what was happening on the Indians’ side…”
In fact, Alvin’s last book, which he edited along with Marc Jaffe, was Lewis and Clark Through Indian Eyes, and Allen Pinkham began the evening by holding it up—he was one of its contributors—and explaining that Alvin had advised the ten Indian writers that he and Marc Jaffe were
Read The Article

Through Indian Eyes

Years ago I asked Otis Halfmoon, an enrolled Nez Perce who was working as an interpreter for the Nez Perce National Historical Park, to come to Wallowa County and give a talk on the Nez Perce War. I don’t remember now why I asked him to address that particular topic, but I do remember his response.

It was in the upstairs room at the Community Church in Enterprise, and over 100 people, many of them old timers who had never shown up for a Fishtrap event in the past, climbed the stairs, harboring their own ideas, stories, and questions of the Nez Perce and sometimes of their own white settling ancestors.

Otis started it off by saying that he couldn’t tell the story of the Nez Perce War, that what he could tell was his own family’s stories of that chapter in tribal life. He began with the old woman, Watkuweis, who had been helped by whites while escaping slavery Read The Article

Bobbie Conner new Board Chair at NMAI

Some of you might have already heard, but it is worth repeating! Roberta “Bobbie” Conner is the incoming Chair of Board of Trustees of the Smithsonian’s National Museum of the American Indian. She has been on the Board since 2008, co-facilitated a Tribal museum directors meeting at NMAI in January, and will chair her first Trustees meeting February 9 and 10 in Washington D.C.

I have known Bobbie primarily through working on the Nez Perce Homeland project in Wallowa, where she and I are still board members. But she also gave a lecture on “Lewis and Clark through Indian Eyes” at Fishtrap, and she was in fact one of the writers in Alvin’s last book, the one he and Marc Jaffe edited called Lewis and Clark through Indian Eyes. And I had the great good fortune to work with Bobbie, Alvin, Cliff Trafzer, other historians and Tribal elders and editor Jennifer Carson on Wiyaxayxt / Wiyaakaaawn / As Days Read The Article