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The Western Heritage Center is hosting a free presentation of "Contemporary Voices Along the Lewis and Clark Trail," a documentary produced by Sally Thompson, of the University of Montana, at noon Wednesday.

The half-hour film is a dialogue with 18 men and women representing 13 tribes from the hills and plains of Kansas to the mouth of the Columbia River. Filmed on location, the documentary takes viewers into the tribal homelands to listen to elders and educators tell their stories about life after the Corps of Discovery.

As Thompson states, "Lewis and Clark are history, but the tribes are not."

Since 2001, Thompson, an anthropologist and educator, and videographer Ken Furrow interviewed 100 people in 27 tribes from St. Louis to the mouth of the Columbia River, documenting the ongoing stories of the tribes who still live in the same territories where Meriwether Lewis and William Clark met tribal members' ancestors two centuries ago.

The film is a living document of the traditions, history, challenges and wisdom of the people who still live along this historic trail. Topics include the importance of place-names; treaty history and the reservation experience; the effects of boarding schools and the revival of native languages; and the story of Clark's Nez Perce son; the legacy of repatriation; and the future of the homelands for which they have cared.

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