Two Row Wampum Renewal Campaign arrives at Kanatsiohareke
Submitted by Kay Olan
Onondaga and Dutch paddlers were greeted upon their arrival at Kanatsiohareke on July 10. Tom Porter, Sakokwenionkwas expressed gratitude to the paddlers for the undertaking of such an important venture. He gave thanks for their safety so far and for their continued safety on this historic trip. He said their actions truly exemplify the ideals of the Haudenosaunee. The travelers shook hands with those present. A replica of the Two Row Wampum Belt was displayed and explained. Later that day, a large dinner was shared by all those in attendance. The Akwesasne Women Singers sang to the group the following day as the paddlers rested before leaving on July 12 to continue east on their mission.
They started their historic journey on July 2 traveling from Onondaga toward Albany. They will take part in a large celebration at Russell Sage College in Troy, NY on July 27 where there will be music by Pura Fe, Margo Thunderbird, and The Akwesasne Women Singers. Rick Hill will speak on the Two Row. There will be Dutch and native artists, food and much more. The following day the paddlers will continue south on the Hudson River toward New York City.
The Two Row Wampum Renewal Campaign is a partnership between the Onondaga Nation and Neighbors of the Onondaga Nation (NOON). Its purpose is to strengthen the alliance between the Haudenosaunee and their allies in New York State and throughout the world. It seeks to polish the 400-year-old chain of friendship established between the Haudenosaunee and Dutch immigrants as recorded in the Two Row Wampum Belt. Mutual respect as well as a shared responsibility for environmental cleanup and preservation is also a core component of the campaign. The paddlers are enacting the symbolism of two ships traveling down the River of Life to educate people about these important concepts.
The Two Row Wampum Belt or Guswenta is the Haudenosaunee record of the 400-year-old agreement made between the Haudenosaunee and the Dutch. It is the framework for the covenant chain referred to in all subsequent treaty relations made between the Haudenosaunee and non-native governments on this continent. The agreement defines a three-part commitment to friendship, peace between peoples, and living side by side as brothers forever (as long as the grass is green, as long as the waters flow downhill and as long as the sun rises in the east and sets in the west). Throughout the years, the Haudenosaunee have sought to honor this agreement and have pointed out that ecological stewardship is necessary for this continuing relationship.
Please check http://www.honorthetworow.org for additional details on dates, stops, festivals and events along the way.