PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — For Columbus Day, the Museum of the American Revolution celebrated Indigenous Peoples’ Day to showcase the lesser known story of Native American history and culture.
More than a dozen men, women and children dressed in tribal, beaded clothing and hawk feather head pieces, performed the social dances of the Oneida, Senca, Mohawk and Tuskaroara nation, known as People of the Long Horn.
“A lot of places we go, they don’t even think that we’re alive anymore,” said Heath Hill, a a member of the Oneida nation.
Hill, aka Lewaskonics, which means “they desire him,” coordinated Monday’s People of the Longhouse dance performance. He says their tribes are scattered throughout North America, but they still work together to keep their culture going.
“When they went went to war,we went to war, sometimes against our own people,” said Darren Bonapart, who is part of the Mohawk Nation.
Bonapart gave a presentation called the Wampum Chronicles, the story of the Natives’ roles in the French and Indian War in the 1700’s.
“By the time- this battle- the smoke clears- there’s about 80 warriors lying on the ground.”
Vice President of Collections, Scott Stephenson, says the museum’s goal is to tell the story of the true impact of the building of America.
“Every day is a reminder for them that there were winners and losers,” Stephenson said.
The museum held cultural presentations and film screenings throughout the day.