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News stories tagged with "mohawk"

Akwesasne Freedom School
Akwesasne Freedom School

Akwesasne Freedom School's mission: Cultural survival

At the Akwesasne Freedom School on the Akwesasne Mohawk reservation near Massena, kids spend their whole day, including recess, completely immersed in the Mohawk language. Nora Flaherty has more.  Go to full article
Seneca president Robert Odawi Porter displays the historic cloth Tuesday.  [photo by Chris Caya]
Seneca president Robert Odawi Porter displays the historic cloth Tuesday. [photo by Chris Caya]

Senecas reassert sovereignty; Cuomo eyes gambling

Seneca Nation president Robert Odawi Porter is using an historic piece of cloth to deliver a message to New York State about native sovereignty. He said payment of the cloth and a small sum according to an 18th century treaty symbolizes native nations' freedom from state taxation and right to land.

The history lesson came on the same day that Governor Andrew Cuomo announced he is considering legalizing gambling in New York. That would have a profound effect on native nations and tribes around the state who rely on their casinos for revenue. Martha Foley and Dave Bullard report.  Go to full article
Camp Gabriels has sat empty for two years (File photo)
Camp Gabriels has sat empty for two years (File photo)

Native American group wants to reinvent Camp Gabriels

Two years after New York State prison officials closed Camp Gabriels, a Mohawk writer and activist wants to reopen the Adirondack facility as an education center and accredited campus with ties to Syracuse University.

Doug George announced last week at a meeting in Ticonderoga that he is working with Native American leaders, state officials and with other educators to develop the program. He hopes to attract students interested in learning about Native culture, language and heritage.

As Brian Mann reports, the proposal has been on the drawing board for more than a year. But key questions remain.  Go to full article
Robert Odawi Porter at his desk.
Robert Odawi Porter at his desk.

Seneca president redefining native leadership

This week, we're going to take a look around Indian Country in New York. Taxing native smoke shops have grabbed headlines lately. But we're going to look deeper at some of the political, economic, and social trends shaping New York's native tribes and nations.

Today, the Seneca Nation, south of Buffalo. Casinos and tobacco sales have turned it from an empoverished territory to one of the top ten employer in western New York.

The Nation's new president, Robert Odawi Porter, has taken a lead role in negotiating native issues with the Cuomo Administration.

Porter wants the Senecas to go beyond smoke shops and slot machines. He's a Harvard-educated lawyer and academic. And he wants to recast one of the darkest moments of the Seneca people into an economic boon. David Sommerstein has this profile.  Go to full article
Mike Thompson at home with "daddy's girl", 2 year-old Stella.
Mike Thompson at home with "daddy's girl", 2 year-old Stella.

Mohawk goalie channels tradition into lacrosse playoffs

The hockey and basketball playoffs are at full throttle. But there's another professional sport deep in the title series - the national lacrosse league. Tomorrow, the Buffalo Bandits, one of the league's winningest franchises, takes on the Toronto Rock in the semifinals. The Bandits are led by goalie Mike Thompson, a Mohawk who lives in Akwesasne. Thompson's had an incredible year and an incredible career, having won both major North American lacrosse championships. David Sommerstein visited him at home and has this profile.  Go to full article
Karina White of Akwesasne models a traditional outfit, designed by Niio Perkins.  Photos by Randi Rourke Barreiro
Karina White of Akwesasne models a traditional outfit, designed by Niio Perkins. Photos by Randi Rourke Barreiro

Native fashion adorns runway in Akwesasne

Four years ago, a tobacco company in Akwesasne, Jacobs Manufacturing, started a native fashion show to raise money for the local hat and mitten fund.

The "Nations Best Next Top Model Show" has grown into a big attraction. More than a thousand fans filled the Jacobs plant on the St. Regis Mohawk reservation last Saturday night. Grammy-award winner Joanne Shenandoah performed.

Models from Iroquois communities showed off the work of ten Mohawk designers. The fashions included traditional regalia, cocktail and casual wear, and furs.

Joni Sarah White, an Akwesasne artist, joined models and designers at last weekend's Nations Best Next Top Models Show in Akwesasne. Winning model Chatnie Herne won a one-year contract with an Ottawa modeling agency.
Producer Randi Rourke Barreiro was backstage and by the runway for today's Heard Up North.  Go to full article

Mohawks, New York stalled over casino revenue payouts

The St. Regis Mohawk Tribe says it's "at an impasse" in talks with New York over sharing the revenue from the Akwesasne Mohawk Casino near Massena. The tribe says it's paid more than $50 million to the state, St. Lawrence and Franklin counties, and four north Country towns since 2005 under the Mohawks' gaming compact.

But those payments stopped last month when the tribe claimed New York violated an exclusivity clause in the compact by allowing slot machines on a little native territory in Clinton County. David Sommerstein reports.  Go to full article
2002 - Chief Jake Swamp looks on while his grandson, Frank, hammers an ash log to loosen strips for basketmaking.
2002 - Chief Jake Swamp looks on while his grandson, Frank, hammers an ash log to loosen strips for basketmaking.

Remembering Mohawk peacemaker Jake Swamp

Jake Swamp, Mohawk chief and spiritual leader - planter of peace trees -- died unexpectedly a week ago. He was a public face of traditional Mohawks, opening ceremonies with a prayer in the Mohawk language, and traveling the world to teach about the teachings and issues of the Iroquois Confederacy, the Haudenosaunee.

Swamp founded the Tree of Peace Society almost 30 years ago to recover and pass along Mohawk and other tribal culture and philosophy.

We remembered Jake Swamp this morning, with a 2002 archive story set at the society's center in western St. Lawrence County. Martha Foley has more.  Go to full article
The Handsome Lake grave site at Onondaga
The Handsome Lake grave site at Onondaga

Jake Swamp: the prophet's story

Mohawk chief and spiritual leader Jake Swamp founded the Tree of Peace Society almost 30 years ago to recover and pass along Mohawk and other tribal culture and philosophy.

On the society's website there's a quote that reads:
"We plant the tree of peace. Under its roots we have buried the weapons of war. Hatred, greed and jealousy will be cast aside to make room for positive teachings."

One of these teachings comes from the Mohawk prophet Kanya-da-LEE-oh, or "handsome lake." Here's his story, as told by Jake Swamp.  Go to full article
Frank and Mason hillips both won first place.
Frank and Mason hillips both won first place.

Heard Up North: Akwesasne smoke dancers

Last weekend, hundreds of people gathered outside the arena on Cornwall Island for the Akwesasne Pow Wow. More than 200 dancers from across the Iroquois territories competed. David Sommerstein spoke with two smoke dancers for today's Heard Up North.  Go to full article

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