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Pieces of our culture are now on public display in a museum created at Burlington International Airport to educate the 1.4 million people who fly in and out of Burlington every year. Our Chief, Don Stevens, says the main message he wants to get across is that the Abenaki people, who first inhabited Vermont 11,000 years ago, are still here.
This exhibit will be on display for at least the next five years. You will see samples of our regalia, artwork, tools, and so much more. This would be a great activity for your family on a Sunday afternoon!
This display was created to inform citizens about aspects of New Hampshire’s Indigenous culture, and to highlight that the Abenaki People and other Indigenous citizens are still here, and are active and productive members of society. We would especially like to thank the Mount Kearsarge Indian Museum for all their advice and assistance. We would also like to thank the New Hampshire Fire Academy for hosting the display, and in particular, Christopher Rousseau, for inviting us and for organizing the display.
Madeleine Gosselin Wright, Nulhegan Abenaki Tribe
Chair, Arts and Crafts Committee, New Hampshire Native American Affairs Commission
This exhibit displays some of the distinctive clothing, regalia and ceremonial objects used by Alnôbaiwi; an inter-tribal group of Vermont Abenakis associated with the Ethan Allen Homestead who learn, practice and teach ancestral songs, subsistence activities, dances, arts and ceremonies. This is not like other exhibits, the objects are meant to be used and so are not delicate ”art objects", but ceremonial items representing the living culture of Vermont Abenakis. If items are missing from the display, then it means they are in use in Indigenous Ceremonies. Some important items such as certain ceremonial pipes, wampum belts or sacred cornmeal and its container are not meant to be seen except in use, and are not included in this exhibit.
Built in collaboration with scholars and experts, including Smithsonian Institution Archaeologist and Anthropologist Stephen Loring and Abenaki Historian Frederick Wiseman, this exhibit explores the human-landscape connections that go back thousands of years, from the Paleoindians of the last Ice Age to the Abenaki and Mohawk today.
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