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Global Justice: NATIVE AMERICANS IN MAINE

INTRODUCING NATIVE AMERICANS IN MAINE

         

Click on the logos at right to visit the Maine-Wabanaki and Penobscot Nation websites introducing their history and culture. 

 

 

 

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Maine Newsstand  [Database]

Search the Bangor Daily News, Kennebec Journal, Maine Times, Morning Sentinel (Waterville), Portland Press Herald, and Sun Journal simultaneously.

Productive Keyword searches: Penobscot trib*, Wabanaki

Narrow your results by using the date bar, among the tools at right

PENOBSCOT HISTORY

The Penobscot Dance of Resistance:
Tradition in the History of a People
 by Pauleena MacDougall (2004)

From the cover: Historians predicted the demise of the Penobscot Indians early in the nineteenth century, but the tribe is thriving at the opening of the twenty-first century. Although by the early 1800s the Penobscots had been rendered all but invisible to the dominant culture, by selectively adapting to changing circumstances, they have won back land and visibility. The vital importance of employing elements of cultural resistance as a survival mechanism has, until now, been underestimated. A decade of political activism culminated in the precedent-setting 1980 Maine Indian Land Claims settlement. Today the Penobscots run small industries, manage their natural resources, and provide health services, K-through-8 education, and social services to the poor and elderly of their community. MacDougall demonstrates that Penobscot legend, linguistics, dance, and oral tradition became foundations of resistance against assimilation into the dominant culture. She thoughtfully and accessibly reconstructs from published, archival, and oral sources the tribes metaphorical and triumphant Dance of Resistance -- founded on spiritual power, reverence for homeland, and commitment to self-determination -- from colonial times to the present. In a larger context, Dance of Resistance's examination of the history of one Indian nation illustrates the complex interaction of cultural systems in America.


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LAND

Wabanaki Homeland and the New State of Maine:
The 1820 Journal and Plans of Survey of Joseph Treat

edited with an introduction by Micah A. Pawling (2007)

From the publisher: In late September 1820, hoping to lay claim to territory then under dispute between Great Britain and the United States, Governor William King of the newly founded state of Maine dispatched Major Joseph Treat to survey public lands on the Penobscot and Saint John Rivers. Traveling well beyond the limits of colonial settlement, Treat relied heavily on the cultural knowledge and expertise of John Neptune, lieutenant governor of the Penobscot tribe, to guide him across the Wabanaki homeland. Along the way Treat recorded his daily experiences in a journal and drew detailed maps, documenting the interactions of the Wabanaki peoples with the land and space they knew as home. Edited, annotated, and with an introduction by Micah Pawling, this volume includes a complete transcription of Treat's journal, reproductions of dozens of hand-drawn maps, and records pertaining to the 1820 treaty between the Penobscot Nation and the governing authorities of Maine. As Pawling points out, Treat's journal offers more than the observations of a state agent conducting a survey. It re-creates a dialogue between Euro-Americans and Native peoples, showing how different perceptions of the land were negotiated and disseminated, and exposing the tensions that surfaced when assumptions and expectations clashed.


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PENOBSCOT LIVES

In the Shadow of the Eagle: A Tribal Representative in Maine
by Donna M. Loring (2008) 

From the publisher: Maine is the only state in the nation to have tribal representatives seated in its legislative body, a practice that began in the 1820s. Although the representatives from the Penobscot Nation and the Passamaquoddy Tribe don't have voting power on the house floor, they serve on committees and may chair committees. Donna's first session as representative of the Penobscot Nation was a difficult one—a personal struggle to have a "voice," but also because of the issues: changing offensive names, teaching Native American history in Maine schools, casinos and racinos, and the interpretation of sovereign rights for tribes. Some of the struggles and issues remain as she continues to serve, and the perspective she offers—as a Native American and as a legislator—is both valuable and fascinating.


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