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Native American Heritage Month

November is Native American Heritage Month. The month is the outgrowth of activism by Native individuals and organizations in the 20th century to dedicate a day to acknowledging the contributions of Indigenous Americans, and has been proclaimed by the federal government annually since the 1990s.

According to the Buttonwoods Museum, the area that makes up Haverhill is traditional Pentucket land, and Pentucket is an Algonkian term meaning “‘land of the winding river.'” The Native Land website shows the area that now makes up Haverhill as traditional Abenaki, Pentucket (on the north side of the Merrimack River), Agawam (on the south side of the river), and Wabanaki lands. We acknowledge the Indigenous inhabitants and their stewardship of this land, both in the past and in the present, while acknowledging that what is now Haverhill was built on this land.

Photograph of Native American Heritage Month fiction display, showing books by Native authors with brief typed sketches for the authors.

Take some time this month to check out a book by a Native author! The library currently has a Native American Heritage Month fiction display with brief bios for a number of authors. These are a few of the books in the display:

Image of the cover of The Toughest Indian in the World by Sherman Alexie.

The Toughest Indian in the World by Sherman Alexie

Image of the cover of LaRose by Louise Erdrich

LaRose by Louise Erdrich

Image of the cover of There There by Tommy Orange.

There There by Tommy Orange

Image of the cover of Trail of Lighning by Rebecca Roanhorse

Trail of Lightning by Rebecca Roanhorse

Additionally, Electric Lit recently published recommended reads by Native authors.

The Massachusetts Center for Native American Awareness is an excellent resource for learning more about Native education and advocacy in Massachusetts. The MCNAA is a sponsor of the annual Pow Wow at Plug Pond. The Buttonwoods Museum also provides education relating to the Native history and culture of the region.

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