Indian Time - A Voice from the Eastern Door

An Unwilling Gift From The Dead


Reprinted from Wampum Belts of the Iroquois by Tehanetorens

This is a replica of a belt which was offered for sale in October 1972, by collectors through a Park Avenue auction gallery. The original was dug up from a grave together with the bones of the children who were buried with it, probably within the last century in New York State.

White people who read this can rest fairly secure that when they die, their remains will not be disturbed. But Indian People find that the resting places of their grandmothers and grandfathers are fair play for archeologists-both professional and amateur operating under the guise of "pursuit of knowledge." Even today Indian people worry that even in death they will be bothered and that their own bones may someday rest in a museum to be viewed by curious eyes.

Although the original meaning of this belt is not known to us, we display it here as a symbol of the persecution of Indian dead, and a sign of shame for those who do not know what "Rest in Peace" means.

Ancestors! Our Ancient Fathers and Mothers! We honor you and we will protect you!


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