Native Village 

Youth and Education News

June 15, 2005 Issue 154 Volume 4

“I have my community. Not to say that it is a developed community, but it is true that we all live like the five fingers in a hand, which know how to join with each other.”
— Panchito Ramírez

After 2,000 Years, a Seed From Ancient Judea Sprouts

Israel: Israeli doctors and scientists have succeeded in germinating a 2,000 year old date palm seed.    Nicknamed Methusala, the date palm seed was found in an ancient storeroom in an excavation at Masada.  Researchers hope to find out why the original date palms of Judea, praised in the Bible and Koran, was so exceptional for its shade, food, beauty and medicinal qualities.  Dr. Elaine Solowey planted the date seeds in January after soaking the seeds first in hot water to soften the coat, then in hormonal acids, then in an enzymatic fertilizer. "I've done other recalcitrant seeds," she said. "It wasn't a project with a high priority. I had no idea if the food in the seed was still good, but I put them in new pots in new potting soil and plugged them into drip irrigation and kind of forgot about them."  About six weeks later, she said, "I saw the earth cracked in a pot and much to my astonishment, one of these came up. "The first two leaves looked odd, she said, very flat and pale. "But the third looked like a date leaf with lines, and every one since has looked more and more normal -- like it had a hard time getting out of the seed."  The plant is now 11.8 inches tall and has produced seven leaves. Date palms became extinct after they were destroyed during the Crusades.

National Trust Announces 2005 List of America’s 11 Most Endangered Historic Places
Each year, the National Trust for Historic Preservation lists “America’s 11 Most Endangered Historic Places.”  The chosen sights are unique historic properties threatened by neglect, lack of funds, development, or public policy. Since the list began in 1988, 160 properties have been identified, ranging from urban districts and rural landscapes to Native American landmarks and sports arenas.
11 Most Endangered Historic Places list:
Belleview Biltmore Hotel, Belleair, Fla.
One of West Florida’s most beloved landmarks, the Belleview Biltmore has welcomed presidents, business tycoons and other luminaries since 1897.
 Camp Security, York County, Pa. – The sole remaining site of a Revolutionary War prison camp may soon give way to new development with no plans to preserve, interpret or save any of its elements.
Daniel Webster Farm, Franklin, N.H. – The Daniel Webster Farm was home and family farm of Daniel Webster (1782-1852), one of America’s pre-eminent orators and statesmen.
Eleutherian College, Madison, Ind. – The first college in Indiana – and one of the first anywhere in pre-Civil War America – which admitted students regardless of race or gender. Founded in  1848, it also served as a busy stop on the Underground Railroad.
Ennis-Brown House, Los Angeles, Calif. – The grandest of Frank Lloyd Wright’s textile-block houses, the Ennis-Brown House was badly damaged in the 1994 Northridge earthquake and further ruined by recent rains.
Finca Vigía: Ernest Hemingway House, San Francisco de Paula, Cuba – Finca Vigía was Ernest Hemingway’s home from 1939–1960.
Historic Buildings of Downtown Detroit, Detroit, Mich. – Downtown Detroit boasts a rich array of architectural treasures reflecting its role as a major station on the Underground Railroad, an industrial powerhouse, the world-famous “Motor City,” and the home of Motown.
Historic Catholic Churches of Greater Boston, Mass. A record number of historic Catholic churches in Boston have been slated for sale, redevelopment and possible demolition.
King Island, Alaska – Located 95 miles west of Nome, King Island is in imminent danger of being washed into the Bering Sea. For centuries, King Island was occupied by the Inupiat Eskimos, known as “King Islanders” or “Ugiuvangmiut.”  Today, the last surviving Inupiat families are seeking to seasonally return to the Island.
National Landscape Conservation System (NLCS), Western States– Encompassing 26,000,000 acres in 12 Western states, the System includes dozens of national monuments, conservation and wilderness areas, historic trails, and wild and scenic rivers.
 “The Journey Through Hallowed Ground” Corridor, VA, MD, PA – Encompassing hundreds of historic sites including, six homes of U.S. presidents, the largest collection of Civil War battlefields, Native American and African American historic sites, and numerous scenic rivers, roads and landscapes, the land is imminently threatened by suburban sprawl.

Dolphins Use Sponges to Protect Their Snouts 
Washington:  Some Shark Bay dolphins living off Australia's coast teach their young to use sponges as snout protection while foraging for food in the sea floor.  Researchers suspect the cone shaped sponges, which dolphins tear off the ocean floor, help the foraging mammals avoid stings from stonefish and other critters hiding in the sandy sea bottom. Michael Kruetzen, lead author of the dolphin report analyzed 13 "spongers'' and 172 "non-spongers. '' He concluded that the practice seems to be passed along family lines, primarily from mothers to daughters. Only one male was observed using a sponge. Kruetzen noted that, as adults, male and female dolphins have very different lifestyles.
Associated Press

Top 10 drives in Indian Country
On the Arizona roads of the Hopi and Navajo reservations, one finds rosy sandstone, mint-green sagebrush and the turquoise skies of American dreams.  But the reservations are more than the scenery: what you really find are the people who live there.
Top 10 rides:
e 1. U.S.  89 and 89A from Flagstaff to Marble Canyon
e 2.  Indian 59 from U.S.  160 to Many Farms
e 3.  New Mexico 134 over Narbona Pass
e 4.  Indian 7 from Fort Defiance to Chinle
e 5.  Indian 13 from U.S.  666 to Lukachukai
e 6.  U.S.  163 from Kayenta to Mexican Hat, Utah
e 7.  Indian 27 from Ganado to Chinle
e 8.  Indian 30 from Narbona Pass to Mexican Springs, N.M.
e 9.  Indian 12 from Round Rock to Window Rock
e 10.  Indian 65 from Whippoorwill Springs to Keams Canyon

Eiteljorg gets bigger, better 
Indiana: After a year and a half of construction, the expanded Eiteljorg Museum of American Indians and Western Art opened on June 11. The 45,000-square-foot Mel and Joan Perelman Wing has doubled the museum's usable space, enabling more gallery space, an education center, a cafe, outdoor programming areas, and public rental space.   More than 1,400 Indianapolis area households helped donate both finances and ideas for the project.  “All of the ideas came from the community’s input through the early strategic planning phase,” said John Vanausdall, president and CEO of the Eiteljorg. “The education space grew in size as we gauged the community’s needs."
Eiteljorg by the numbers
$40,700,000 dollars raised for the Eiteljorg’s expansion and the future of the museum;
135,000  visitors expected in 2005;
45,000 square feet of additional space created by the Mel and Joan Perelman Wing;
12,000 pieces of hand-cut Minnesota dolomite used on the exterior;
6,000 square feet dedicated to educational space, the Nina Mason Pulliam Educational Center;
150 number of Edward Weston photographs currently on display until Oct. 9;
57 new pieces donated by the family of the late George Gund, valued at more than $15,000,000;
50% more new gallery space;
$7.00 adult admission price.
Custom Publications

Métis museum in downtown Winnipeg?
Manitoba: The Manitoba Métis Federation is planning to build a national Métis museum in downtown Winnipeg.  "It will not be your normal type of museum that is artifact-driven," said Métis federation spokesman Grant Anderson. "What we are hoping to do is have this thing be a seven-days-a-week, 24-hours-a-day place where there is a vibrant type of facility, where people can come in and do some learning, do some reading, do research, play areas for children, and at the same time, do some education and tell a story that is probably unique in the world." The 40,000 square-foot facility is expected to cost a minimum of $20,000,000 to build.

"For the Love of the Game" helping Indian athletes
Oklahoma: Mix together a few good Indian athletes, an organization that believes in what it’s doing, and a National Indian Basketball Tournament. What you have is "For Love of the Game," an  organization dedicated to helping young Native American athletes make it in the world of sports. Formed several years ago,  FLG was organized by four men of Muskogee descent. They began with the "March Madness" Basketball Tournament that showcases the best Indian high school  talent in Oklahoma as well as nationally.  From those tournament players, officials chose an all-star team and took them to the annual West Native American Basketball Classic in Denver. Last year, the girls finished in second place; the boys in sixth. FLG  officials want to continue to grow and help Indian kids both on and off the field or court of play. "The organization’s goal is to one day reach scholarships in the amount of $100,000 or greater," said one of the organizers,  Lucas Taylor. 
Native American Times

Phoenix readying for Native basketball invitational
From June 21-25,  64 Native American basketball teams will descend upon Phoenix to take part in the Native American Basketball Tournament. Co-founded by Mark West of the Phoenix Suns, NABI is the only all-Native tournament organized to create scholarship opportunities. “NABI is using basketball as a tool for Native youth to further their educational aspirations,” said West. Composed of high school student athletes from the U.S. and Canada, the first round of games will take place June 22-24 in reservation gyms surrounding Phoenix. The final four and the televised championship games will be held at America West Arena. Proceeds will benefit the NABI Foundation, whose mission is to fund Native American college mentoring programs and grant college scholarships to Native students.
For more information about NABI and the tournament, visit

New Delta rhythm for Bush teens
Alaska: Rappers Jaye Ulak and Jimmy Walker, known as Blood Family, don't have a record deal. But they do have lyrics and a growing posse. "We're Native celebrities," Walker half-joked, surrounded by admirers following last month's Cama-i Dance Festival . Blood Family isn't just for the kids.  Even the elders jump on the bandwagon, eager to hear real talk about the underbelly of village life from a teen's perspective.  Since debuting in 2004 at their senior prom in the Yu'pik Eskimo village of Scammon Bay -- population 486 -- the duo has performed at schools and conferences in Seattle, Anchorage, Savoonga, Emmonak and Togiak.  Now Ulak, 19, and  Walker, 20,  have become a word-of-mouth phenomenon.   Blood Family's material is about blunt reality and taboo topics from village life -- suicide, depression, drugs and violence.  Sometimes there's an undercurrent of optimism; other times, the words are overwhelmed by despair. In Blood Family, Native youths now have rappers who not only live and look like them but provide voices for them. Ulak even raps -- in his song "Me Against Alaska" -- "I hope I can reach the youth with the words I speak."

vote for the top 100 Greatest native Americans
The Discovery Channel is hosting a seven hour series asking viewers to vote for the Top 100 Greatest Americans.  So far, more than 500,000 online nominations hve been tallied in a list supposed to represent "the pulse of the nation," and "the qualities we most admire."  However, not one Native American appears on that list:

Abraham Lincoln
Albert Einstein
Alexander Graham Bell
Alexander Hamilton
Amelia Earhart
Andrew Carnegie
Arnold Schwarzenegger
Audie Murphy
Babe Ruth
Barack Obama
Barbara Bush
Benjamin Franklin
Bill Clinton
Bill Cosby
Bill Gates
Billy Graham
Bob Hope
Brett Favre
Carl Sagan
Cesar Chavez
Charles Lindbergh
Christopher Reeve
Chuck Yeager
Clint Eastwood
Colin Powell
Condoleezza Rice
Donald Trump
Dwight D. Eisenhower
Eleanor Roosevelt
Ellen DeGeneres
Elvis Presley
Frank Sinatra
Franklin D. Roosevelt
Frederick Douglass
George H. W. Bush
George W. Bush
George Lucas
George Patton
George Washington
George Washington Carver
Harriet Ross Tubman
Harry Truman
Helen Keller
Henry Ford
Hillary Rodham Clinton
Howard Hughes
Hugh Hefner
Jackie Robinson
Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis
Jesse Owens
Jimmy Carter
Jimmy Stewart
John Edwards
John Glenn
John F. Kennedy
John Wayne
Johnny Carson
Jonas Edward Salk
Joseph Smith Jr.
Katharine Hepburn
Lance Armstrong
Laura Bush
Lucille Ball
Lyndon B. Johnson
Malcolm X
Marilyn Monroe
Mark Twain
Martha Stewart
Martin Luther King Jr.
Maya Angelou
Mel Gibson
Michael Jackson
Michael Jordan
Michael Moore
Muhammad Ali
Neil Alden Armstrong
Nikola Tesla
Oprah Winfrey
Pat Tillman
Dr. Phil McGraw
Ray Charles
Richard Nixon
Robert Kennedy
Ronald Reagan
Rosa Parks
Rudolph W. Giuliani
Rush Limbaugh
Sam Walton
Steve Jobs
Steven Spielberg
Susan B. Anthony
Theodore Roosevelt
Thomas Edison
Thomas Jefferson
Tiger Woods
Tom Cruise
Tom Hanks
Walt Disney
Wrights Brothers

For many, the list reflects a near total lack of appreciation and knowledge of United State history.  Too many are just celebrities, not contributors. Some are merely popular at this point in time. For America to note them as the best of the best makes the list flawed and worthless. Terri Jean, author of The Red Roots Educational Project, is calling upon Indian country to vote for the top 100 Native Americans of all time. Send in your nominations and brief biographical info explaining why you think the person deserves to be on this list. She is looking for cultural, national, and international contributions within communities or for the entire world. For guidelines, visit:

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