NATIONAL NATIVE AMERICAN HERITAGE MONTH
National Native American Heritage Month is an annual designation observed in November. During this time, we celebrate the diverse and rich culture, history, and traditions of Native people. It’s also a time to educate anyone and everyone about the different tribes, and to raise awareness about the struggles native people have faced in the past as well as the present. American Indian pictures, words, names, and stories are a crucial part of American history, and help mold our life today.
Thousands of years before Christopher Columbus and his crews landed their ships in the Bahamas, the Native Americans had discovered America and founded their lives and communities there. Native American history overflows with a variety of diverse groups and prominent leaders and figures like Crazy Horse, Sitting Bull, Sacagawea, and Pocahontas. Native Americans were always known for hard work and quick instinct. Today, there are about 4.5 million Native Americans in the United States, making about 1.5 percent of our population. Take some time to learn about and celebrate their culture this month.
HOW TO OBSERVE
Use #NativeAmericanHeritageMonth to post on social media. Keep Native American Heritage alive this November, and for all the months to follow! Here are a few ways you can celebrate this month.
- Read a Native American history book, or a novel that dives into the history and traditions of native people. Movies like Pocahontas tend to sensationalize truth about Native American history, so reading a book will likely give you a more realistic vision.
- Play a game of lacrosse! Believe it or not, lacross was one variety of indigenous stick ball games the American Indians played as early as the 12th century.
- There are a few movies made about Native Americans that aren’t as oversensationalized, and are definitely worth a watch. Try Reel Injun, Smoke Signals, Bury my Heart at Wounded Knee, and Winter in the Blood.
- Get in the kitchen and try a native recipe! There are tons of mouthwatering recipes from native soups, to roasted duck, or even pumpkin bread for a tasty fall treat.
- Finally, learn the true story about the very first thanksgiving. What you were taught in elementary school isn’t quite accurate. Click here to learn!
President George H. W. Bush approved a joint resolution designating November 1990 “National American Indian Heritage Month.” in 1990.