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Best Ways To Celebrate Native American History And Culture In Baltimore

November 5, 2012 6:00 AM

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Credit: www.aisdc.org
It is difficult to think of the Native American people, the Cherokee, Sioux, Iroquois,and hundreds of other tribes, without feeling sadness at all that was taken from them. Yet their cultures continue to thrive even today, as evident in literature, art and community events. As November is National Native American History month, it is the perfect time to learn about this unique aspect of American society.

Baltimore American Indian Center
38th Annual Pow Wow
Patterson High School
100 Kane Street
Baltimore, Md. 21224
(410) 675-3535
http://www.baic.org
Price: $5 visitors 10 and older/$3 children/free for ages 3 and younger
Hours: Nov. 17 and 18 Sat – 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.; Sun – 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

The BAIC was created to help both American Indians and Alaskan Natives in the difficult transition to an urban environment while maintaining their own identity. With the main office located at 113 S. Broadway in Fells Point as well, members are certainly in store for an artistic cultural experience. The center participated in the popular, month-long event, Free Fall Baltimore, and frequently holds fundraisers, movie nights, auctions and even offers museum internship opportunities. Get ready for the 38th Annual Traditional Pow Wow, during which you may taste Native American cuisine, watch skilled dancers and purchase unique arts and crafts.

Related: Best Iconic Works of Art In Baltimore

baltimore museum of art Best Ways To Celebrate Native American History And Culture In Baltimore

(credit: Stephen Jaffe/AFP/Getty Images)

Baltimore Museum of Art
Native American Collection
10 Art Museum Drive
Baltimore, Md. 21218
(443) 573-1582
http://www.artbma.org
Price: free general admission

Among the exhibits of world civilizations, including Asian, African and European, the Native American art collection is a must. No doubt the art of this culture is reflected within its vivid clothing designs, colorful bead jewelry and even intricate details in woodwork. The museum showcases an assortment of pieces, some dating back to the late 1800s, to provide a unique look at a people and culture that, at the time, were under great threat. November is not the only month this collection is available to view, so make sure to stop by on your next visit to the museum.

The Book Escape
805 Light Street
Baltimore, Md. 21230
(410) 504-1902
http://www.thebookescape.com

While art conveys the general image, literature provides a thorough story of the Native American history and heritage. The Book Escape in Federal Hill contains a large assortment of books, including those highlighting the culture. Browse through historical accounts such as “The Trail of Tears” by Gloria Jahoda, and “Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee” by Dee Brown, which was adapted to film in 2007. Read fiction stories “I Heard the Owl Call My Name” by Margaret Craven and “The Grass Dancer” by Susan Power. If you’re unsure about what to read, flip through the anthology “Smoke Rising: The Native North American Literary Companion” by Joseph Bruchac.

Related: 5 Must-Read Books By Baltimore Authors

American Indian Society of Washington, D.C.
P.O. Box 6431
Falls Church, Va. 22040
(410) 675-3535
http://www.aisdc.org

Founded in 1966 with only 20 members, the American Indian Society has grown over the years, merging tribes within the greater D.C. area. It now connects well more than 300 members, all looking to maintain their heritage and further traditions. This nonprofit includes Indian Pines, a 46-acre retreat in Virginia as a place for members to escape the busy capital city to find harmony among nature and social gatherings with each other. Along with the events in this article, this society participates in pow wows throughout Maryland, Virginia, D.C. and Delaware, not to mention charity performances.

pow wow1 Best Ways To Celebrate Native American History And Culture In Baltimore

Credit: nativeamericanlifelines.org

Native American Lifelines Pow Wow
Salvation Army Boys and Girls Club
1400 Fuselage Avenue
Middle River, Md. 21220
(410) 837-2258
nativeamericanlifelines.org
Price: $5 adults 13 and older
Date: Nov 17 –  10 a.m.

This culturally centered health agency, with an office at 106 West Clay Street, is an immense support network for Native Americans, from HIV/AIDS prevention to providing summer activities for children. Coming soon is a pow wow by Native American Lifelines, which is guaranteed to be an unforgettable experience. Traditional dancing will be performed with singing and a hand drum competition. Purchase crafts, raffles and authentic food while becoming more acquainted with the people and their culture.

Pam Smith graduated from Penn State with a B.A. in English and a passion for writing. Her adaptive nature led her to work in the scientific, energy supply, and business industries while writing on a multitude of topics for various online media. Pam currently resides in Baltimore County. Her work can be found at Examiner.com.

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