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390 A Summit Road
Exeter, RI, 02822
United States

(401)491-9063

Tomaquag Museum is dedicated to educating the public and promote thoughtful dialogue regarding Indigenous history, culture, arts, Mother Earth and to connect to native issues of today.

"BELONGINGS" Blog

“Belonging(s)” Blog For June 2017

Marketing Assistant

 

June, 2017

Belonging(s): “A close relationship among a group and personal or public effects”

Asco wequassinummis, neetompooag! (Hello my friends)

As we celebrate the approach of warm weather the staff of Tomaquag Museum would like to congratulate all the hard working, diligent students who will graduate from schools, colleges and universities all over the state of Rhode Island. We are especially proud of the students from the Narragansett community who will graduate this year. 

As our staff and board work diligently to meet our mission we envision the future of Tomaquag Museum as an “Indigenous Cultural Education destination that engages visitors in thoughtful dialogue that promotes understanding and strives to create experiences that transform people's lives by broadening their perspectives, attitudes, and knowledge of Indigenous Cultures and the interrelationship with the wider world”. With these efforts and activities that have contributed to our growth as an educational institution in mind, we would like to share some wonderful news with you, our friends.

Image: Lorén Spears May 21, 2017 Credit: Thawn and Eleanor Harris

Image: Lorén Spears May 21, 2017 Credit: Thawn and Eleanor Harris

 It is with great pleasure and pride that the board and staff congratulate our own Lorén Spears on being conferred a Doctor of Humane Letters, honoris causa from the University of Rhode Island. Last year she also received the Tom Roberts Prize for Creative Achievement in the Humanities from the Rhode Island Council on the Humanities and the New England Museum Association Excellence Award. She has been honored with the Extraordinary Women award, on International Women’s Day in 2010.  Lorén was a Class of ’89 graduate of URI and received her master’s degree from the University of New England in elementary education. She founded the Nuweetooun School affiliated with the Tomaquag Museum and was a teacher in the Newport public schools for 12 years.She shares her cultural knowledge and traditional arts learned through her family with the public through museum programs. She has written curriculum, poetry, and narratives published in a variety of publications such as Dawnland Voices, An Anthology of Indigenous Writing of New England; Through Our Eyes: An Indigenous View of Mashapaug Pond; The Pursuit of Happiness: An Indigenous View and The 1st Rhode Island Regiment in the American Revolution: From Slaves to Soldiers. She works tirelessly to empower Native youth and to educate the public on Native history, culture, the environment and the arts. She was appointed by Governor Gina Raimondo to serve on the Board of the RI State Council on the Arts and serves on various other boards including The Pell Center’s Story in the Public Square. Under her leadership, Tomaquag Museum has received the Institute of Museum and Library Services’ National Medal. However, this wonderful story doesn’t end here because Lorén is not the first individual associated with Tomaquag Museum to receive an honorary degree from URI. 

She shares her cultural knowledge and traditional arts learned through her family with the public through museum programs. She has written curriculum, poetry, and narratives published in a variety of publications such as Dawnland Voices, An Anthology of Indigenous Writing of New England; Through Our Eyes: An Indigenous View of Mashapaug Pond; The Pursuit of Happiness: An Indigenous View and The 1st Rhode Island Regiment in the American Revolution: From Slaves to Soldiers. She works tirelessly to empower Native youth and to educate the public on Native history, culture, the environment and the arts. She was appointed by Governor Gina Raimondo to serve on the Board of the RI State Council on the Arts and serves on various other boards including The Pell Center’s Story in the Public Square. Under her leadership, Tomaquag Museum has received the Institute of Museum and Library Services’ National Medal. However, this wonderful story doesn’t end here because Lorén is not the first individual associated with Tomaquag Museum to receive an honorary degree from URI.  

 
Image: L-R stand in for Alfred J.Tella, Vladimir Duthiers, Lorén Spears, Robert L. Carothers, Thomas Farragher Credit: Jim Forte, JForte Company for the Globe Design

Image: L-R stand in for Alfred J.Tella, Vladimir Duthiers, Lorén Spears, Robert L. Carothers, Thomas Farragher Credit: Jim Forte, JForte Company for the Globe Design


 Image: Princess Redwing ca. 1960 Tomaquag Museum Archives

 Image: Princess Redwing ca. 1960 Tomaquag Museum Archives

Born Mary E. Glasko (1896-1987), Princess Redwing of the Seven Crescents co-founder of Tomaquag Museum received a Doctor of Humane Affairs, honoris causa from the University of     Rhode Island on June 1, 1975. Princess Redwing of    Narragansett/Pokanoket Wampanoag descent spent all of her life dedicated to serving her community as an educator, historian, artist, and storyteller. She was the co-founder and editor of The Narragansett Dawn tribal newspaper which was published from 1935 to 1936. In 1946 the Rhode Island Writers Guild presented her with a Certificate of Achievement for her stories, plays and poetry about the history, culture and folklore of Indigenous people of Rhode Island and southern New England. She was the co-founder, cultural educator and curator of Tomaquag Museum from its inception in 1958 until 1984. She was an activist who championed indigenous issues and served as a member of the Speaker's Research Committee of the under secretariat of the United Nations from 1947-1970. In 1978 she was inducted into the Rhode Island Heritage Hall of Fame.

Princess Red Wing was such an integral part of the Tomaquag Museum that her contributions to the both the collections and archives are vast and invaluable for understanding not only the museum, but the Indigenous perspective in the 20th century New England. Even today, her objects and archival collection continue to inform us of her rich, wonderful contributions to Indigenous empowerment, by inspiring us through discovering new interesting and information in the archives she left behind. 

Image: Narragansett Times, May 15, 1975

Image: Narragansett Times, May 15, 1975


Blog Picture.jpg

Tomaquag Museum is pleased to introduce you to our newest staff member archivist, Anthony Belz. Anthony or Tony as we call him comes to us from the Haffenreffer Museum of Anthropology, Brown University were he advised museum staff on best archival standards and practices. Identified archival collections, organized, rehoused and created inventories for them and provided evaluation of potential donations to curatorial staff. Tony obtained a Master of Library and Information Studies from the University of Rhode Island and a Bachelor of Science in Anthropology, from Illinois State University.  He is busy organizing and rehousing Tomaquag Museum’s archival and library collection, sits on the Collections Committee, monitors the museums environment and is part of the team that will be redesigning our Ellison “Tarzan” Brown and basket exhibits. Also, he has been appointed co- editor of our Belonging(s) Blog. Please help me welcome Tony to Tomaquag Museum and Belonging(s) Blog. He can be reached at ambelz@tomaquagmuseum.org.


Kutaputush (Thank You) we hope you enjoyed this partnership blog!

Kim Peters, Editor

Tony Belz, Co-Editor

The Tomaquag “Belonging(s)” Blog, is a monthly conversation dedicated to the happenings, musings of staff, and a peek at the collections of the Tomaquag Museum. We welcome guest bloggers, and topics relevant to Native American Museums and Indian Country, especially those located in the New England area.

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