Collection Spotlight: Native American History Resources at the Archives

November is Native American Heritage Month, so today we thought we would share with you some collections at the Archives related to Native American history:

Henry R. Schoolcraft papers: Henry Rowe Schoolcraft was an “author,¬†ethnologist, explorer, geologist, glass manufacturer, and Indian agent” in the nineteenth century. The collection includes his correspondence, published and unpublished articles and essays, journals, reports, and dictionaries of Native American languages. The Archives houses microfilm copies of part of his papers, which are maintained at the Library of Congress. To learn more about Schoolcraft, please see our previous post featuring his collection.

John Pitezel papers: John Pitezel was a Methodist missionary in the Upper Peninsula. His papers contain correspondence, notebooks, essays, and published writings which document his attempts at proselytization among Native Americans in the UP. It should be noted that our copy of the John Pitezel papers is a microfilm copy. The originals are at the Clarke Historical Library at Central Michigan University.

Office of Indian Affairs microfilm: These partial microfilm copies of a collection housed at the National Archives document the correspondence between the national Office of Indian Affairs and the Michigan Superintendent and Agents during the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. They include census roles of Native American tribes in Michigan, correspondence relating to treaty negotiations, land surveys and allotments, and reports sent by the Michigan Agents to the Secretary of War and the Secretary of the Interior.

Nishnawbe News: The Nishnawbe News was the newspaper of the North American Indian Student Organization from 1971 to 1983. At one point, it had a circulation of over 8000 people, but lost funding during a budget crisis. Our collection of the Nishnawbe News runs from 1971 to 1982 and does not include every edition of the paper.

Anishinaabe News: The “Nishnawbe News” returned under a new name, the Anishinaabe News, and a new digital format in 2002. In 2005, it became a physical printed newspaper. It is a publication of Northern Michigan University’s Center for Native American Studies (CNAS) that is “dedicated to featuring Native American-related news, perspectives, and artwork of writers, photographers, and proofreaders, both Native and non-Native.” The Archives has copies of most of the Anishinaabe News up to the present edition.

Screenshot (4)

An example of the Anishinaabe News from July 2015.

Other Native American Newspapers: The Archives also has copies of a number of other newspapers concerned with Native American issues from across the UP. These include the Bay Mills News: Gnoozhekaaning Bidajimowin Newspapers (1999-present), the Gikendaam Chiwiikwegamag Newspapers (2005-2007) from the Keweenaw Bay Indian Community near L’Anse, the Menominee Tribal News Newspapers (1990-1999), and the Sault Tribe News/Win Awenen Nisitotung Newspapers (1994-present). These newspapers document local news from regional Native American communities and record local opinion on state and national news as well.

Interested in learning more about Upper Peninsula Native American history? Come check out all of these collections at the Archives!

Written by Annika Peterson


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