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Akwesasne Mohawk collage artist, musician and poet Alex Jacobs at a display of his work in Santa Fe, New Mexico.  Photo: Todd Moe
Akwesasne Mohawk collage artist, musician and poet Alex Jacobs at a display of his work in Santa Fe, New Mexico. Photo: Todd Moe

A Santa Fe artist with roots in Akwesasne

Alex Jacobs is a Native American visual and performing artist who has called Santa Fe home for almost 30 years. But he hasn't forgotten his roots in Akwesasne, the St. Regis Mohawk Reservation in northern Franklin County. Jacobs first travelled to the southwest as a student at the Institute of American Indian Arts, where he graduated in 1977. In the 1980's, he supported his family as an ironworker and has also been an activist, broadcaster, musician, poet and art teacher.

Todd Moe met Jacobs while touring the farmers' market at the historic Santa Fe Railyard this summer. His fabric collage works of art resemble brightly colored paintings. It's his own technique - "painting" with fabrics - that combines elements from New Mexico with the quilt-making traditions of his Mohawk mother and grandmother. He still visits family in the North Country, but also enjoys the challenge of creating art in the southwest and navigating Santa Fe's busy arts community.  Go to full article
The story of Navajo code talkers (above) is well known. But Native American soldiers speaking Mohawk, Chochtaw, Commanche and other native languages also helped to win the war.
The story of Navajo code talkers (above) is well known. But Native American soldiers speaking Mohawk, Chochtaw, Commanche and other native languages also helped to win the war.

Mohawks seek recognition for WWII code talkers

A Mohawk veterans group wants the federal government to recognize the contributions of "code talkers" during the D-Day invasion of Europe during World War Two. The Navajo "code talkers" were the largest group of Native Americans during the 1940's to use their language skills in the south Pacific against the Japanese.

Jeffrey Whelan, a member of the St. Regis Mohawk Veterans Affairs Committee, says many other tribes participated as "code talkers" during the war. He says the St. Regis Mohawk Tribal Council has sent a letter of request to the U.S. Mint to develop a Congressional Medal for nine veterans at Akwesasne who used their native language to confuse the Germans.  Go to full article

APA reviews plan to tear down popular Adirondack fire towers

The Adirondack Park Agency meets today in Ray Brook and the agenda includes a discussion of the controversial plan to remove two popular fire towers. The APA will also review a the Tall Timbers development project in North Creek. Brian Mann has details.  Go to full article
Charlotte King works on a painting in her home studio.
Charlotte King works on a painting in her home studio.

An artist out to promote her culture

Charlotte King is an artist with a mission. She grew up on the Akwesasne Mohawk Reservation near Massena and recently received an art degree from SUNY-Potsdam. Her goal now is to get more Mohawk art into mainstream galleries, and help preserve the region's strong artistic traditions. She's one of more than 300 artists on the reservation, from painters to basket weavers. Her love of art has taken her to the Smithsonian and Sante Fe. But, King draws and paints what she knows, the local environment around the St. Regis and St. Lawrence Rivers and her Native American culture. Some of her work is on display in Massena and Cornwall this month. Todd Moe has this profile.  Go to full article
Plattsburgh Paper Focuses Attention on Race In Schools (Source:  Press-Republican)
Plattsburgh Paper Focuses Attention on Race In Schools (Source: Press-Republican)

Exploring the "Color Bind" in North Country Schools

Like many rural regions across the U.S., the north country has far fewer African Americans and Hispanics than the national average. This week the Plattsburgh Press Republican is examining the issue of race as it affects our schools. The paper's reporters found that many of the region's kids have little opportunity to interact with racial minorities. The lack of experience may leave some children unprepared for the complex diversity that defines American life. Brian Mann spoke with reporter Ned Rauch.  Go to full article
Larger land claim map at the link below
Larger land claim map at the link below

County Governments Oppose Mohawk Land Deal

Legislators in Frankln County voted unanimously Thursday to oppose a land claims settlement between the state and the St. Regis Mohawk Tribe. County officials say a ten million dollars payment meant to offset the loss of taxes isn't big enough. As Chris Knight reports, the arguements made by legislators mirror those heard earlier this month when St. Lawrence County Legislators voted to oppose the settlement.  Go to full article
The US-Canada border on tribal land in the town of St. Regis is marked only by a small stone obelisk.
The US-Canada border on tribal land in the town of St. Regis is marked only by a small stone obelisk.

Akwesasne: Two Countries, One Nation and the Border

As the federal government seeks to beef up border security since September 11, it's begun working with tribal governments to make patrolling these areas more effective. The lands of the Akwesasne Mohawks near Massena are actually split in two by the U.S-Canada border. As David Sommerstein reports, the area highlights both the challenges of border security on and near reservations and some new initiatives in border patrol.  Go to full article

Federal Judge Bars State Dismissal of Mohawk Land Claim

Earlier this week, a federal judge ruled New York State cannot dismiss the St. Regis Mohawks' land claim to 15,000 acres of land along the St. Lawrence River. David Sommerstein reports the decision is good news for the Mohawks' 20-year old lawsuit, but it raises the thorny issue of how many governments govern in Akwewsasne.  Go to full article

Mohawk Tribal Council Seeks to Insure Non-violent Crossing

The St. Regis Mohawk Tribal Council is hoping to insure a non-violent crossing as activists head into Canada at the Cornwall next Thursday. Mohawks from both sides of the border have promised to escort people headed to the FTAA talks across the international bridge from Cornwall Island. But the tribal council hopes the action will stop at a symbolic show of solidarity. Yesterday, council announced it's taking a zero-tolerance stand against rumored blockades or other confrontations. Jody Tosti reports.  Go to full article

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