By G. Wayne Miller
Providence Journal Staff Writer
Posted Mar. 18, 2015 at 11:22 AM
EXETER, R.I. – The Rhode Island Foundation has awarded a $2,800 grant to the Tomaquag Museum to help complete a documentary movie about the museum’s early history. The museum, which is moving ahead with plans for a new home, itself chronicles the history of Narragansett and other Native Americans in Southern New England.
“The history of Tomaquag Museum envelops the history of the indigenous people of Southern New England,” said Lorén Spears, executive director of the museum, and a recently appointed member of the Rhode Island State Council on the Arts.
The Media Project Grant of $2800 for the Tomaquag Museum Retrospective, working title of the film, was awarded through the foundation’s Archive, Document, Display and Disseminate Fund, established in 1986 by philanthropist Herman Rose.
Working with University of Rhode Island Media Supervisor Dana Neugent, Spears and her crew already have interviewed Eleanor Dove, founder-owner of Dovecrest Indian Restaurant; Paulla Jennings, a nationally celebrated Niantic-Narragansett storyteller; Dawn Dove, Narragansett elder and retired history teacher; and Chief Strong Horse, Narragansett sub-chief and past museum board member, who recently donated a large collection of materials to Tomaquag Museum.
“The goal of this project supported by ADDD Fund is to utilize images and documents from our vast archival collection to support the stories told in the film interviews,” the museum said in a statement.
“We plan to research these materials and gather appropriate support images, quotes, and documents from the archives, which will be digitized for the film and future use by the many researchers who visit each year.”
The film is set to premiere in the fall. For more information on it and other Tomaquag programs, visit the museum site or call (401) 491-9063.
On Twitter: @GWayneMiller
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