Author: Dennis Zotigh

Dennis W. Zotigh (Kiowa/San Juan Pueblo/Santee Dakota Indian) is a member of the Kiowa Gourd Clan and San Juan Pueblo Winter Clan and a descendant of Sitting Bear and No Retreat, both principal war chiefs of the Kiowas. Dennis works as a writer and cultural specialist at the Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian in Washington, D.C.

Hąwe Wakąndeyinge Tųnye Girorisge! (Merry Christmas!) This Native nativity scene took place at the Otoe–Missouria Tribal Complex near Red Rock, Oklahoma, as part of their Light up the Encampment Grounds event. The animal figures represent the seven clans of the Otoe-Missouria Tribe. Instead of a manger, a cradleboard holds the newborn Jesus. (Photo use with permission, courtesy of Johnnie Dee Childs)

Christmas across Indian Country

December 24th, 2018, 10:30PM
Niuam (Comanche) peyote fan, ca. 1890. Oklahoma. 22/9197 (Ernest Amoroso, National Museum of the American Indian, Smithsonian)
Alaska Army National Guard Col. Wayne Don, then 38th Troop Command commander, pledges the Oath of Office, administered by Alaska Army National Guard Brig. Gen. Joseph Streff, Alaska Army National Guard commander, after Don was promoted to full colonel. Dena'ina Center, Anchorage, July 14, 2017.  (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. David Bedard)

A Tradition of Service: Colonel Wayne Don

November 28th, 2018, 10:00AM
Haudenosaunee bear effigy pipe, 17th c. Cayuga Lake, New York. 22/3765 (Ernest Amoroso, National Museum of the American Indian, Smithsonian)

"Words Spoken Before All Others," the Ohenten Kariwatekwen or Haudenosaunee Thanksgiving Address

November 22nd, 2018, 9:30AM
Petty Officer S. Joe Crittenden (U.S. Navy retired), deputy principal chief of the Cherokee Nation and a member of the advisory committee to the National Native American Veterans Memorial. (Photo by Jeremy Charles, courtesy of the Cherokee Nation)
Ramey Growing Thunder (Fort Peck Sioux and Assiniboine Tribes), Chief John Spotted Tail (Rosebud Sioux Tribe), Carolyn Brugh (Fort Peck Sioux and Assiniboine Tribes), and Tamara Stands and Looks Back–Spotted Tail (Rosebud Sioux Tribe) take part in a ceremony at the National Museum of the American Indian honoring the Treaty of Fort Laramie. Ms. Growing Thunder holds a photograph of Medicine Bear (Yanktonai Band of Sioux), one of the Native leaders who signed the treaty 150 years ago. Delegations from the Yankton Sioux Tribe, Oglala Sioux Tribe, and Northern Arapaho Tribe also traveled to Washington, D.C., for the installation of the treaty in the exhibition
Sarah Shear (left), assistant professor of Social Studies Education, Penn State University, and teachers working with students from kindergarten through high school take part in an Indigenous People’s Curriculum Day and Teach-In presented by Teaching for Change and the National Museum of the American Indian. September 2018, Washington, D.C. (© Rick Reinhard)

Indigenous Peoples’ Day: Rethinking American History

October 7th, 2018, 9:00PM
Designer, artist, activist, and organizer Jordan Cocker. (Tekpatl Kuauhtzin)
Delaware leaders prepare to unveil the Treaty of Fort Pitt, on view at the National Museum of the American Indian in Washington, D.C. From left to right: Denise Stonefish, chief of the Delaware Nation at Moraviantown; museum director Kevin Gover; Chester “Chet’ Brooks, chief of the Delaware Tribe of Indians; and Deborah Dotson, president of the Delaware Nation. May 10, 2018, Washington, D.C. (Paul Morigi/AP Images for the National Museum of the American Indian, Smithsonian)
Lyricist, musician, and dancer Christian Parrish Takes The Gun, aka Supaman. (Matika WIlbur)
Jazz performer and composer Delbert Anderson (Navajo). (Shutterfreek Photography)
The Honorable Senator Daniel Kahikina Akaka speaking during the lei-draping ceremony to commemorate King Kamehameha Day. June 7, 2009, the U.S. Capitol Visitors’ Center Emancipation Hall, Washington, D.C. (Courtesy of the U.S. Senate)
Kevin Gover, director of the National Museum of the American Indian, and Ray Halbritter, Oneida Indian Nation representative and CEO of Oneida Indian Nation Enterprises, at the dedication of the new interpretive sound, light, and imagery around the sculpture “Allies in War, Partners in Peace.” (Katherine Fogden [Mohawk], National Museum of the American Indian)
Representatives of the Navajo Nation read the original text of the Naaltsoos Sání, or Navajo Treaty of 1868, after its unveiling in the exhibition
Captain Jefferson Keel (U.S. Army retired), Lieutenant Governor of the Chickasaw Nation, visiting the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at Arlington National Cemetery. (Courtesy of Jefferson Keel)
Specialist Allen Kale‘iolani Hoe (U.S. Army retired), the son and grandson of veterans and a Gold Star father, serves on the advisory committee of the National Native American Veterans Memorial. (Courtesy of Allen Hoe)
On mid-tour leave from Operation Iraqi Freedom, Sergeant First Class Chuck Boers carries in the eagle staff at the Shenandoah Powwow, 2004. (Courtesy of Chuck Boers)
John Richard Edwards (Onondaga) takes part in the installation of the mile-marker post from the Dakota Access Pipeline in the exhibition
Members of a delegation from the Pokagon Band of Potawatomi Indians read names of the signers of the Treaty of Fort Wayne of 1809 as the museum prepares to place the treaty on exhibit. From left: Tribal Council Member Wayne (Alex) Wesaw, Council Chairman John P. Warren, Council Elders Representative Judy Winchester, Tribal Historic Preservation Officer; Jason S. Wesaw, and Council Vice Chairman Robert (Bob) Moody, Jr. National Museum of the American Indian, Washington, D.C., September 2017. (Kevin Wolf/AP Images for National Museum of the American Indian)
Ningiukulu Teevee, (Canadian [Cape Dorset], b. 1963),
Niuam (Comanche) fan with sun and Morning Star designs (detail), ca. 1880. Oklahoma. 2/1617. (Credit: National Museum of the American Indian, Smithsonian)
Hopi Nation honor guard marching in the Native Nations Procession at the dedication of the National Museum of the American Indian, September 21, 2004. Washington, D.C. (National Museum of the American Indian, Smithsonian)
Visitors to the National Archives in Washington, D.C., viewing the Removal Act of 1830. Photo for the National Archives by Jessica Deibert
Poet and spoken word artist Autumn White Eyes. (Angel White Eyes for Red Cloud School)
The Wampanoag Nation Singers and Dancers, 2011. Salt Pond, Cape Cod National Seashore. (Courtesy of the Wampanoag Nation Singers and Dancers)