American Indian Heritage Month


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American Indian Heritage Month

November
In 1914 Red Fox James of the Blackfeet tribe rode a pony 4,000 miles to present his request—endorsed by the governors of 24 states—that a day be set aside in honor of American Indians, or Native Americans, a name many prefer. The first general American Indian Day was observed on the second Saturday in May 1916, but throughout the 20th century, the observance and its date were left to the individual states, and they have varied widely. Since 1995 the month of November has been observed as American Indian Heritage Month.
Few would argue that the plight of American Indians today is not a grim one, with unemployment, illiteracy, and high school drop-out rates among the highest in the country. Although the largest Indian populations can be found in Oklahoma, Arizona, California, New Mexico, and North Carolina, many other states have come up with ways to draw attention to their unique contribution to American culture and to the need for improving their condition. Most celebrations focus on educational and promotional events, displays of Native American art and dance, and agricultural fairs.
CONTACTS:
Indian Health Service Heritage Committee
801 Thompson Ave., Ste. 400
Rockville, MD 20852
301-443-7261; fax: 301-480-3192
www.ihs.gov
SOURCES:
AnnivHol-2000, pp. 164, 181
BkFest-1937, p. 204
References in periodicals archive ?
Consider using games and activities to introduce concepts related to American Indian Heritage Month in your classroom this November.
This November, we celebrate American Indian Heritage Month. We can all agree that it is an improvement from one day in May.
You can celebrate National American Indian Heritage Month by learning more about the first peoples of the western hemisphere.
As November comes to a close, we conclude our feature section and American Indian Heritage Month with a photo essay highlighting the role that historically Black Hampton University had in educating American Indians.
One of their Bennett sisters, sophomore Robin Gray, is a member of the First Nation, the term favored in Canada as opposed to "Indian" or "Native Canadian." One day, Gray informed the class that November was National American Indian Heritage Month. I, like most of my students, was completely unaware.

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