EATON — The Preble County Board of Commissioners presented a proclamation to Commodore Preble Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) during its meeting on Wednesday, Nov. 6, recognizing November as “Native American Heritage Month.”
According to the National Congress of American Indians, the month is a time to celebrate rich and diverse cultures, traditions, and histories and to acknowledge the important contributions of Native people. Heritage Month is also an opportune time to educate the general public about tribes, to raise a general awareness about the unique challenges Native people have faced both historically and in the present, and the ways in which tribal citizens have worked to conquer these challenges.
Committee Chairman Martha House explained, the month is meant to recognize Native Americans for their history, heritage, and obstacles they’ve had to overcome. She believes it is important for the DAR to give Native Americans recognition they don’t normally receive.
“It recognizes the original Native Americans who lived on this land, before we came here,” she said. “I don’t think the Native Americans get enough recognition for what they did and for what they went through when our country was moving them off their land, out west to Oklahoma and South Dakota. They moved where the land was not nearly as good as it was here in the Midwest.”
She added, this proclamation helps to remind people of their past, while also recognizing Native Americans for their struggles and history.
“The Native Americans have a right to keep their heritage, language, and culture alive as well. At one point in time, they carded all the children off to school and forbid them from speaking in their native languages and do the things they would have done in their culture, trying to Americanize them or Anglicize them. I think they have a right to keep their language and heritage,” she said.”
The DAR supports two Native American schools: Bacone College in Muskogee, Oklahoma, and Chemawa Indian School in Salem, Oregon. Commodore Preble Chapter of the Daughter of the American Revolution has previously supported Chemawa Indian School with a school supply collection this past fall. The chapter sent money, papers, pencils, and other school supplies high school students need to be successful.
Reach Kelsey Kimbler at 937-683-4061