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Native American and Indigenous Heritage Month

For Native American and Indigenous Heritage Month 2022, we are seeking to understand how to be a good relative, a teaching woven into many communities. It’s embedded in the teachings that ask us to look to seven generations into the future when making decisions, and to remember our ancestors in the generations before us – how to hold their wisdom, knowledge and perspectives with care and pass it on. It’s embedded in the teachings of kinship and interrelatedness with place, more-than-humans, and people. We encourage participants to consider how they are committed to the values embedded in being a good relative and their relationships to place, water, more-than-humans, community, ancestors, and descendants as they engage with programming throughout the month. 
This year we are continuing to celebrate 30 Days of Indigenous. Everyday throughout the month of November is an opportunity to discover ways to be in relations with, advocate for, and support Native and Indigenous communities.

We encourage you to come back to this site daily, to engage with the day's activities as you are able. Come to an event listed below or, on days when there isn't an event, engage with this website for a curation of self-guided opportunities to learn more about Indigenous Peoples! 

Download a calendar for the entire month!

Contact Information:


30 Days of Indigenous Events

Land Acknowledgement


According to, a Land Acknowledgement is “a formal statement that recognizes and land-acknowledgement-poster.pngrespects Indigenous Peoples as traditional stewards of this land and the enduring relationship that exists between Indigenous Peoples and their traditional territories.”

“To recognize the land is an expression of gratitude and appreciation to those whose territory you reside on, and a way of honoring the Indigenous people who have been living and working on the land from time immemorial. It is important to understand the long-standing history that has brought you to reside on the land, and to seek to understand your place within that history. Land acknowledgements do not exist in a past tense, or historical context: colonialism is a current ongoing process, and we need to build our mindfulness of our present participation. It is also worth noting that acknowledging the land is Indigenous protocol.” (

Northwestern University

Northwestern is a community of learners situated within a network of historical and contemporary relationships with Native American tribes, communities, parents, students, and alumni. It is also in close proximity to an urban Native American community in Chicago and near several tribes in the Midwest.

The Northwestern campus sits on the traditional homelands of the people of the Council of Three Fires, the Ojibwe, Potawatomi, and Odawa as well as the Menominee, Miami and Ho-Chunk nations. It was also a site of trade, travel, gathering and healing for more than a dozen other Native tribes and is still home to over 100,000 tribal members in the state of Illinois.

It is within Northwestern's responsibility as an academic institution to disseminate knowledge about Native peoples and the institution's history with them. Consistent with the University's commitment to diversity and inclusion, Northwestern works towards building relationships with Native American communities through academic pursuits, partnerships, historical recognitions, community service and enrollment efforts.

Tribe Name Pronunciations:  

Ojibwe: Oh-JIB-way 

Potawatomi: Pot-tah-WAH-tah-mee 

Odawa: Oh-DAH-wah 

Menominee: Muh-NOM-uh-nee 

Miami: My-Am-E 

Ho-Chunk: HOH- Chuhngk 

Native American Heritage Month 2022

In honor of Native American Heritage Month, we invite you to help spread awareness and reflection on Northwestern’s place in relation to the land. We invite you to offer a land acknowledgement in your workspace in whatever form is meaningful to you. You can offer a land acknowledgement at the beginning of a meeting or an event you are hosting. We have designed a flyer specifically for this occasion that we invite you to print or post wherever you’d like- in your department or building space (if you’re currently physically on campus), in your e-mail signature, on your website’s homepage. We even have a virtual zoom background that you can download and use. Please visit our land acknowledgement webpage here for all of this information.  If you’d like more resources for learning about land acknowledgements, you can visit this website: 

Design description (by LCO Ojibwe designer/artist Brittany Tainter) 

Long before skyscrapers and more recent city life spread across the region, these Indigenous Nations have been in relationship with the land and, with that, carry responsibilities. As a small snapshot of life and the landscape then, you can see a canoe resting along the shore of Lake Michigan, surrounded by pine trees. Canoes, made often times using birch bark, are representative of the historic and sustained presence of Indigenous peoples in the Great Lakes area, prior to the arrival of settlers and continued to this day. Adorning the lake are wild rice and wild onion, both of which hold a special place within each tribe. The onion plant is native to the Chicago area and can be attributed to its naming. Wild rice is a sacred plant and food to Great Lakes tribes, tied to migration stories. Wild rice, which is actually a grain and not a rice, is highly nutritious but has been threatened by fracking, pipelines, mines, and proposed genetic engineering. Both plants represent this area, food sovereignty, subsistence, and treaty rights. 
Today, Indigenous peoples continue to protect and remain in relationship with these relatives and will do so until the end of time. It is vital to honor these beginnings and recognize the ongoing dedication and importance of Indigenous culture within our communities and within the land that we gather, live, learn and work on. 


Nov 2 - Smudging and Feast

  • Time: 11:30 AM – 1:00 PM 
  • Location: Multicultural Center, 1936 Sheridan Road 
  • RSVP:

    Smudging is the practice of burning sage and/or other medicines for cleansing, purifying and healing purposes. Join us for a smudging ceremony led by a Northwestern community member. It is a chance to come together as a community to prepare for the days ahead and is a great start to Native American and Indigenous Heritage Month. Students, faculty and staff are all welcome to attend. Lunch will be served.  

Nov 3 - Sand Creek Massacre Commemoration: Film Screening & Discussion

In the spirit of healing, the Native American and Indigenous Student Alliance (NAISA), Multicultural Students Affairs (MSA), and Office of Institutional Diversity and Inclusion (OIDI) invites our community to reflect on Northwestern's role in supporting the healing efforts of Cheyenne and Arapaho communities. Join us in a 3-part series to learn about the massacre and Northwestern’s place in this history.  

Join us in one or all three events. 

Nov 4 - Postcard to the 7th Generation

As stated in the Haudenosaunee's Great Law of Peace, the Seventh Generation Principle asks us to consider in our every deliberation, the impact of our decisions on the next seven generations. The Great Law of Peace is the foundation of the Haudenosaunee Confederacy, the oldest participatory democracy on Earth. This way of thinking encourages decision-making that looks beyond short-term benefits in favor of decisions that will have a positive impact on the faces that have yet to come. It asks us to take into consideration the land, water, plants, animals, and people before we make major decisions.  

In honor of Native American Heritage Month, consider the impact you can have on future generations. What commitment can you make to the descendants of this generation to ensure that you leave the world in better shape than the one you inherited? Join MSA at Norris on 11/4 between 11:00 and 1:00pm to write a postcard with your commitment to the next 7 generations. 

Nov 5 - The Native Vote

Native Americans received the right to vote in 1924 with the passage of The Snyder Act. The Library of Congress states The Snyder Act of 1924 admitted Native Americans born in the U.S. to full U.S. citizenship. Though the Fifteenth Amendment, passed in 1870, granted all U.S. citizens the right to vote regardless of race, it wasn't until the Snyder Act that Native Americans could enjoy the rights granted by this amendment. 

Even with the passing of this citizenship bill, Native Americans were still prevented from participating in elections because the Constitution left it up to the states to decide who has the right to vote. After the passage of the 1924 citizenship bill, it still took over forty years for all fifty states to allow Native Americans to vote. For example, Maine was one of the last states to comply with the Indian Citizenship Act, even though it had granted tax paying Native Americans the right to vote in its original 1819 state constitution. As reported by Henry Mitchell, a resident of that state, Native Americans were prevented from voting in Maine in the late 1930s. (  

And yet, according to the National Congress of American Indians, Native Americans and Alaskan Natives have played key roles in national elections. “For example, in 2006, U.S. Senator John Tester (D-Montana) won his Senate seat over the Republican incumbent candidate by only 3,562 votes. In that election, more than 17,000 voters cast ballots on Montana’s seven Indian reservations.” Senator Lisa Murkowski, speaking on her 2010 election at the 2011 State of Indian Nations Address, said, “My success in running this historic write-in campaign would not have been possible…if Alaska’s Native people did not turn out to the polls, did not energize, or did not come together as they did. I deeply, deeply appreciate the trust that Alaska Native peoples have placed in me.”  

To this day, the suppression of the Native American vote continues 

To learn more about the power of the Native American vote in the United States, check out this infographic put out by the National Congress of American Indians. Also, listen to an episode of All My Relations that discusses this topic.  

Nov 6 - Books


For centuries, Native Americans have valued storytelling as a means to pass down knowledge from one generation to the next. Stories were used to weave together lessons, history, knowledge of the land, traditions, water, birds, and animals to ensure the continued survival of Indigenous culture and ways of being. This list includes a mixture of academic writings, fiction, non-fiction, essays, memoir, and poetry by some of the best Native American writers, thinkers, and storytellers. By no means exhaustive, this list is a great starting point for anyone looking to add some Indigenous perspectives to their lives and bookcases. 


Quick Facts: 

  • Joy Harjo is the first Native American United States Poet Laureate and served three terms (2019-2022) 
  • If you’re looking for a good choice for children’s books, check out the recommendations from Oyate. Oyate’s mission is to “review children’s literature and advocate for Native Americans/American Indians to be portrayed with historical accuracy, cultural appropriateness and without anti-Indian bias and stereotypes.  
  • Support Native-owned bookstores! 
  • Birchbark Books is a great independently Native owned bookstore. Most of our recommendations have links to their website. Support Native-owned businesses. 
  • Red Planet Comics is the only Native American comic shop in the world! 
  • Strong Nations is a First Nations-owned bookstore in Canada.  

Highlights by Genre:  


Winter Counts, by David Heska Wanbli Weiden 

A groundbreaking thriller about a vigilante on a Native American reservation who embarks on a dangerous mission to track down the source of a heroin influx. Virgil Wounded Horse is the local enforcer on the Rosebud Indian Reservation in South Dakota. When justice is denied by the American legal system or the tribal council, Virgil is hired to deliver his own punishment, the kind that's hard to forget. But when heroin makes its way into the reservation and finds Virgil's nephew, his vigilantism suddenly becomes personal. He enlists the help of his ex-girlfriend and sets out to learn where the drugs are coming from, and how to make them stop. 


Deer Woman 

This anthology features the work of more than a dozen Native women sharing stories of survival, empowerment, and healing. Edited by Elizabeth LaPensée and Weshoyot Alvitre and featuring the work of: Patty Stonefish, Allie Vasquez, Mia Casesa, Darcie Little Badger, Tara Ogaick, Kimberly Robertson, Barbara Kenmille, Maria Wolf Lopez, Tatum Bowie, Jackie Fawn, Rebecca Roanhorse, Carolyn Dunn, Nashoba Dunn-Anderson, and more, this anthology is an important addition to the current conversation about violence against women, especially Native women. 


Black Indian, by Shonda Buchanan 

Black Indian, searing and raw, is Amy Tan's The Joy Luck Club and Alice Walker's The Color Purple meets Leslie Marmon Silko's Ceremony- only, this isn't fiction. Beautifully rendered and rippling with family dysfunction, secrets, deaths, alcoholism, and old resentments, Shonda Buchanan's memoir is an inspiring story that explores her family's legacy of being African Americans with American Indian roots and how they dealt with not just society's ostracization but the consequences of this dual inheritance. 


How We Became Human, by Joy Harjo 

This collection gathers poems from throughout Joy Harjo's twenty-eight-year career, beginning in 1973 in the age marked by the takeover at Wounded Knee and the rejuvenation of indigenous cultures in the world through poetry and music. How We Became Human explores its title question in poems of sustaining grace. 


Indigenous Food Sovereignty in the United States: Restoring Cultural Knowledge, Protecting Environments, and Regaining Health, by Devon A. Mihesuah & Elizabeth Hoover (Editors) 

Centuries of colonization and other factors have disrupted indigenous communities' ability to control their own food systems. This volume explores the meaning and importance of food sovereignty for Native peoples in the United States and asks whether and how it might be achieved and sustained. 


Elatsoe, by Darcie Little Badger 

Imagine an America very similar to our own. It's got homework, best friends, and pistachio ice cream. There are some differences. This America been shaped dramatically by the magic, monsters, knowledge, and legends of its peoples, those Indigenous and those not. Some of these forces are charmingly everyday, like the ability to make an orb of light appear or travel across the world through rings of fungi. But other forces are less charming and should never see the light of day. Elatsoe lives in this slightly stranger America. She can raise the ghosts of dead animals, a skill passed down through generations of her Lipan Apache family. Her beloved cousin has just been murdered, in a town that wants no prying eyes. But she is going to do more than pry. The picture-perfect facade of Willowbee masks gruesome secrets, and she will rely on her wits, skills, and friends to tear off the mask and protect her family. 

JoJo Makoons 

In an all-new chapter book series by Dawn Quigley, JoJo Makoons celebrates a spunky young Ojibwe girl who loves who she is. Jo Jo Makoons Azure is a spirited seven-year-old who moves through the world a little differently than anyone else on her Ojibwe reservation. It always seems like her mom, her kokum (grandma), and her teacher have a lot to learn—about how good Jo Jo is at cleaning up, what makes a good rhyme, and what it means to be friendly. 

More Recommendations:  

*First 25 people to come visit one of our spaces (CNAIR at 515 Clark St or the MCC at 1936 Sheridan Rd) get a FREE COPY of the book There, There by Tommy Orange 

Nov 7 - Food, Friends, and Fire with the Indigenous Graduate Student Collective

This will be a space to share a meal, be in community, and reflect on the month. Bring your craft projects, stories, and friends! Co-sponsored by The Graduate School’s Office of Diversity and Inclusion.

Nov 8 - Movie Night at the GSRC

  • Time: 6:00 – 8:00 PM 
  • Location: Gender & Sexuality Resource Center, 3rd Floor, Norris University Center
Students are welcome to stop by for popcorn and a movie! 

Nov 9 - Craft Circles

Join us for a craft circle. A member of the Northwestern community will lead us in an art-making activity. Feel free to bring any crafts that you're currently working on! We’ll craft in community. 

Nov 10 - Two Ways to Participate!

NU Dining with Chef Walks First, Jessica Pamonicutt

  • Time: 11:30 - 1:00 PM
  • Location: Norris University Center, Ground Floor

Join, Chef Walks First, Jessica Pamonicutt. Chef Walks First will be serving bite size portions from a special menu she has crafted.  Celebrate Native American culture by trying some tasty treats and watch the performance of drummers and dancers!


Sand Creek Massacre Commemoration: Making Activity

In the spirit of healing, the Native American and Indigenous Student Alliance (NAISA), Multicultural Students Affairs (MSA), and Office of Institutional Diversity and Inclusion (OIDI) invites our community to reflect on Northwestern's role in supporting the healing efforts of Cheyenne and Arapaho communities. We will be making tobacco ties, painted birch bark pins, and a banner that will be used for the Procession planned for November 17, 2022. Join us in a 3-part series to learn about the massacre and Northwestern’s place in this history.  

Join us in one or all three events.

Nov 11 - CNAIR Brown Bag: Indigenous Methodologies: Research in Relation with Lands and Waters by Forrest Bruce, (PhD Student, Learning Sciences, SESP)

This year, CNAIR's Brown Bag Series theme is Indigenous Methodologies! Each of our Brown Bags will feature a student, faculty, or guest scholar and how their current work incorporates Indigenous Methodologies. These events are open to the CNAIR community and offer a chance to learn from one another, connect and engage in conversation centered on what a practice of using Indigenous Methodologies consists of and how it can be incorporated into your research. Please join us and don’t forget to bring your lunch!

In-Person Capacity is 15 people.

Nov 12 - Art

Contemporary Art 

Spend the day immersing yourself in the work of a few brilliant contemporary Native American artists. These creating work that both pays homage to the long history of artwork in many Native American communities and disrupts settler expectations of what is considered Native American art. The Museum of Contemporary Native Artists (MoCNA) at the Institute of American Indian Arts is home to over 7,500 artworks created in 1962 or later. As MoCNA states on its website, they are “at the forefront of contemporary Native art presentation and they strive to be flexible, foresighted and risk-taking in their exhibitions and programs.”  

Kira Murillo  (Shoshone-Bannock, Pima)  

Kira Murillo is an indigenous tattoo artist from the Shoshone-Bannock tribe in Fort Hall, ID who is seeking to bring about community change through her art. 

Ken Williams Jr (Northern Arapaho, Cattaraugus Seneca) 

Ken Williams Jr. began his career at an early age, experimenting as a self-taught artist who learned by observing family and friends. He completed his BA in museum studies at the Institute of American Indian Arts, Santa Fe (2007) and while there took beadwork classes from noted beadwork artist Teri Greeves. Since 2003 he has been participating in the Southwest Association for Indian Arts (SWAIA) Annual Indian Market, Santa Fe and since 2006 at the Heard Museum Annual Indian Market and Festival, Phoenix. William’s work has been widely exhibited and garnered many awards. (from Shiprock Santa Fe) 

Teri Greeves (Kiowa) 

Teri Greeves is a beadworker. She has been beading since she was about 8 years old. She is compelled to do it. She has no choice in the matter. She must express herself and her experience as a 21st Century Kiowa and she does it, like all those unknown artists before her, through beadwork. And though her medium may be considered “craft” or “traditional,” her stories are from the same source as the voice running through the first Kiowa beadworker's needles. It is the voice of her grandmothers. 

Gregg Deal (Pyramid Lake Paiute Tribe) 

Gregg Deal is a provocative contemporary artist who challenges Western perceptions of Indigenous people, touching on issues of race, history and stereotypes. Through his work—paintings, murals work, performance art, filmmaking and spoken word—Deal critically examines issues and tells stories of decolonization and appropriation that affect Indian country. Deal’s activism exists in his art, as well as his participation in political movements. He has been heavily involved with the media activist movement #changethename, posting a video to Vimeo inviting Indigenous people’s commentary on the sports mascots issue in response to mainstream media’s attempted erasure of Indigenous voices. (from Atlantic Center for the Arts) 

Wendy Red Starr (Apsáalooke) 

Artist Wendy Red Star works across disciplines to explore the intersections of Native American ideologies and colonialist structures, both historically and in contemporary society. Raised on the Apsáalooke (Crow) reservation in Montana, Red Star’s work is informed both by her cultural heritage and her engagement with many forms of creative expression, including photography, sculpture, video, fiber arts, and performance. An avid researcher of archives and historical narratives, Red Star seeks to incorporate and recast her research, offering new and unexpected perspectives in work that is at once inquisitive, witty and unsettling. Intergenerational collaborative work is integral to her practice, along with creating a forum for the expression of Native women’s voices in contemporary art. 

Elisa Harkins (Cherokee, Muscogee) 

Elisa Harkins is a Native American (Cherokee/Muscogee) artist and composer originally hailing from Miami, Oklahoma. Her work is concerned with translation, language preservation, and Indigenous musicology. Harkins uses the Muscogee and Cherokee languages, electronic music, sculpture, and the body as her tools. She has exhibited her work at The Broad Museum, Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, documenta 14, The Hammer Museum, MCA Chicago, MOCA North Miami, and Vancouver Art Gallery.  

Chris Pappan (Osage, Kaw, Cheyenne River Lakota Sioux) 

A Chicago based artist of Kaw, Osage, Cheyenne River Sioux heritage, he is a self described Native American Lowbrow artist. Currently his artwork is based on American Indian ledger drawings of the mid to late 19th Century while giving them a 21st Century twist. His work is featured at many public and private collections around the world, including the Field Museum in Chicago, IL.  

Will Wilson (Dine´) 

Will Wilson’s body of photographic work stimulates a critical dialogue and reflection around the historical and contemporary “photographic exchange” as it pertains to Native Americans.  His aim is to convene with and invite indigenous artists, arts professionals, and tribal governance to engage in the performative ritual that is the studio portrait.  This experience is intensified and refined by the use of large format (8x10) wet plate collodion studio photography. This beautifully alchemic photographic process dramatically contributed to the collective understanding of Native American people and, in so doing, an American identity. 

More Artist 

Nov 13 - Indigenous Podcasts

Podcasts have grown in popularity and enthusiasm. It is estimated that about 1 in 4 Americans listen to podcasts on a monthly basis1. Podcasts allow us to multitask while we listen. They allow the listener to be entertained while they are educated. These are just a sample of podcasts created by Native Americans and provide for both entertainment and some much need education from Indian Country.  

Highlight from the Genre: 

Conversations with SustainNU: Interview with Patty Loew, Director of the Center for Native American and Indigenous Research at Northwestern University 

(From Conversations with SustainNU) Wrapping up the 3-part environmental justice series, Greg sits down with Dr. Patty Loew, Inaugural Director of the Center for Native American and Indigenous Research at Northwestern University and a member of the Bad River Band of Lake Superior Ojibwe. This episode touches on past and current environmental injustices native nations face and how native youth, traditional cultures and ecological knowledge, and a sense of generational land stewardship inspire hope for a better future. 

More Recommendations 


Nov 14 - Visit Looking 101 at The Block

Students, Staff, and Faculty are welcome to join us for a visit to The Block Museum to view the Looking 101 exhibition. Lois Taylor Biggs, will guide us through the exhibit and draw connections throughout the pieces on display in connection with the theme of the month around being a good relative. In addition to visiting work by Chris Pappan (Kaw, Osage, Cheyenne River Sioux), which is a part of Looking 101, we will also view other works from The Block’s collection from artists, Shan Gorshorn (Eastern Band of Cherokee), Rosalie Favell (Canadian/Métis), and Andrea Carlson (Grand Portage Ojibwe).

Space is Limited. Please RSVP to attend.

Nov 15 - Harvest: Indigenous Discussions

Students are welcome to join MSA for Harvest: Indigenous Discussions. This event serves as a monthly opportunity for us to come together in community to talk about issues relevant to Indian Country from across Turtle Island and NU’s campus. We will share a meal and dig into the theme of Native American and Indigenous Heritage Month around being a good relative. Food will be served! 

Nov 16 - Native American Summit

  • ALL DAY 
  • Location: Springfield, IL 

The Chicago American Indian Community Collaborative is coordinating a trip to Springfield, IL to meet with Illinois legislators on topics that matter to Native People and our future generations. Sign up to join the trip - meals and transportation will be provided.  

Nov 17 - Two Ways to Participate!

NAGPRA & Archaeology
  • Time: 1:30 - 2:30 PM
  • Location: Parkes Hall, Room 224, Evanston, IL

Join Native American Graces Protection and Repreiation Act (NAGPRA) Investigator, David Barland-Liles, for a discussion of Native American cultural heritage protection and repatriation.


Sand Creek Massacre: Procession and Fire
  • Time: 3:00 – 5:00 PM 
  • RSVP: 
  • Procession Starts at: Evans Alumni Center, 1800 Sheridan Road, Evanston, IL 60208 
  • Procession Finishes at: Center for Native American and Indigenous Research (515 Clark St, Evanston) 

We will walk about 0.7 miles and end at the CNAIR house at 515 Clark Street for a fire, reflection, and warm drinks.  

In the spirit of healing, the Native American and Indigenous Student Alliance (NAISA), Multicultural Students Affairs (MSA), and Office of Institutional Diversity and Inclusion (OIDI) invites our community to reflect on Northwestern's role in supporting the healing efforts of Cheyenne and Arapaho communities. Join us in a 3-part series to learn about the massacre and Northwestern’s place in this history. 

Weather can be unpredictable during this time of year, so please plan accordingly. There are no stairs along the walking route, and it follows a paved concrete path, however, the route ends on a lawn with grass and some uneven ground. 

Short option: Meet in front of the John Evans Alumni Center (1800 Sheridan Road) for remarks and then head 300ft west down Clark St to meet the group outside of the CNAIR House (515 Clark Street) 

Nov 18 - Indigenous Fiction Book Club

Join MSA on Friday, November 18, 2022 from 4:30-6:30pm for our Fall Indigenous Fiction Book Club! We will be reading The Sunbearer Trials by Aiden Thomas, a Mexican-inspired fantasy following Teo, a semidios, chosen for the Sunbearer Trials. This book is a queer, Mexican combination of Percy Jackson and The Olympians and The Hunger Games. For more information on the book: 

Books will be provided by MSA. Books will be available for pick-up at the beginning of November. Please wait for a confirmation email from MSA staff before coming to pick up your book. 

Nov 19 - Carlos Montezuma Awards

  • Time: 6:00 PM – 9:00 PM 
  • Location: Glencoe Writer’s Theatre, Glencoe, IL  
  • Hosted by the Mitchell Museum 

The Mitchell Museum of the American Indian will honor U.S. Representative Sharice Davids for her significant contributions to Native American society, culture, and history at the 45th Anniversary Benefit and Awards Ceremony on November 19, 2022, at Writers Theater in Glencoe, Illinois. 

Purchase Tickets here: 

Nov 20 - Dining/Recipes

As the weather turns colder, consider making some of these recipes to warm the soul. 

The recipes below use ingredients indigenous to North America that were/are used by Native Peoples prior to contact with Europeans. For example, corn, first cultivated thousands of years ago, is a sacred plant and featured heavily in the creation stories and traditions of many Native communities. As Robin Wall Kimmerer says in an essay about corn, “In my own Potawatomi language, we say mandamin, or the Wonderful Seed. The scientific name is Zea mays, “mays” referring to the Taino name that Columbus recorded in his journal when first tasting “a sort of grain which they call mahiz, which very well tasted when boiled, roasted, or made into porridge.” Mahiz, meaning the “Bringer of Life,” became the word maize in English. These indigenous names honor maize as the center of culture and reflect a deeply respectful relationship between people and the one who sustains them.”   

  • Northwestern Dining Event, Details TBD 

Indigenous Food Producers  

More Information/Resources  



Hunters Stew Wóle Wičháša Waháņpi Tȟáwa (Sean Sherman)  


  • 1 ounce dried wild mushrooms, such as chanterelles, trumpet, or morels  
  • 1 cup boiling water  
  • 3 Tablespoons sunflower oil  
  • 2½ to 3 pounds bear, lamb, or bison, cut into 2-inch cubes  
  • Coarse salt  
  • Crushed juniper  
  • 3 wild onions or 1 large leek, white part, trimmed  
  • 8 ounces fresh mushrooms, coarsely chopped  
  • 1 Tablespoon minced fresh oregano  
  • 2 teaspoons sumac to taste  
  • 1 cup Corn or Bison Stock  


  1. Put the dried mushrooms in a small bowl and pour the boiling water over them. Soak about 20 minutes until softened. Drain and reserve the soaking liquid. Chop the mushrooms and set aside.  
  2. In a large, heavy pot, heat the sunflower oil over medium-high heat and brown the meat pieces in batches, seasoning with salt and juniper. Be careful not to crowd the pan. Cook each batch about 10 to 15 minutes. Remove the browned meat to a platter.  
  3. Reduce the heat and add the onions, mushrooms, oregano and sumac, and sauté until the onion is soft and the mushrooms release some of their liquid, about 3 to 5 minutes. Stir in the chopped, reconstituted wild mushrooms and the soaking liquid and the stock, stirring to dislodge any brown bits that stick to the pan.
  4. Return the meat to the pot, bring to a simmer, and cook, partially covered, until the meat is fork tender, about 2 hours. Taste and adjust the seasonings. Remove from the heat and let sit a few minutes before serving. 
Wild Rice Salad (The late Kermit Valentino c/o Pam Silas)  


  • 2 cup wild rice, rinsed  
  • 1 teaspoon salt  
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries or craisins  
  • 3/4 cup pecans, or walnuts toasted and coarsely chopped  
  • 1/4 cup (or to taste) real maple syrup  


  1. Add rice, salt and 6 ½ cups of water to a pot and bring to a boil.   
  2. Turn heat down to low, cover and simmer until rice is done, about 50 minutes.  
  3. Transfer rice to strainer to drain any excess water, set aside to cool.  
  4. Combine rice with cranberries, crasins, pecans, syrup, then serve.
Coal Roasted Gete Okosomin Bisque (Karlos Baca)  


For Soup:  

  • 6 cups gete okosomin squash (or use butternut squash as a substitute)  
  • 2 cups purslane or 2 teaspoons purslane powder  
  • 1 teaspoon crushed juniper berry (seed removed)  
  • 1 cup wild plums (pitted)  
  • 1 tablespoon biscuit root (grated)  
  • 1 tablespoon wild onion flower (dried)  
  • 2 teaspoons salt (divided in half)  
  • 2 tablespoons sunflower Oil  
  • 2 cups water  

For Toppings:  

  • 4 dehydrated squash blossoms  
  • 1 teaspoon 3 leaf sumac  
  • 1 teaspoon wild amaranth seed  
  • 2 tablespoons raw pumpkin seeds  
  • 1 teaspoon calendula petals  


  1. Remove seeds from squash and season cavity with Purslane, Juniper, and Salt. Roast squash directly in hot coals, rotating often, until soft. Remove from coals and cut off blackened exterior. Cut into large chunks.  
  2. In a pot, cast iron preferable, add Sunflower Oil, Squash, Wild Plum, Biscuit Root, Wild Onion Flowers, and Salt. Sautèe until browned and deglaze with water. Reduce liquid by half and remove from heat.  
  3. Add squash mixture to blender and liquefy. (Add small increments of water if necessary to create creamy consistency)  
  4. Salt to taste.  
  5. Distribute evenly between four bowls and top with 3 Leaf Sumac, Wild Amaranth Seed, Squash Blossom, Pumpkin Seed, and Calendula Petals.  
  6. ENJOY!
3 Sisters Harvest Vegetable Soup (from Iroquois White Corn Project)  


  • 2 cups Hulled White Corn, cooked/prepared ahead  
  • 15 oz. can of kidney or pinto beans  
  • 32 oz. vegetable broth  
  • 2  15 oz. cans diced tomatoes  
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil  
  • 1 cup onion, chopped   
  • 2 celery stalks, chopped  
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced   
  • 1 teaspoon basil  
  • 1 teaspoon cumin  
  • 2 cups winter squash, peeled and cubed  
  • ½ cup carrots, diced  
  • 1 cup parsnips, cubed  
  • Salt and pepper to taste  


  1. Prepare ahead Iroquois Hulled White Corn. See directions here 
  2. Warm the oil in a large soup pot on medium heat. Add onions, celery and garlic. Sauté for 10 minutes on low heat.  
  3. Add basil and cumin, salt and pepper to taste. Add squash, carrots, parsnips and tomatoes. Simmer until tender. Add beans and corn, simmer for another 10 minutes. Add vegetable broth simmer on low for 10-15 minutes.

Nov 21 - CANCELED: Craft Circles


Update: This event has been canceled. Please joins us again at other 30 Days if Indigenous events throughout the month.

Join us for a craft circle. A member of the Northwestern community will lead us in an art-making activity. Feel free to bring any crafts that you're currently working on! We’ll craft in community.

Nov 22 - Campus Walking with Relatives

Join us for a campus walk led by a Northwestern community member. These walks will aid in building our relationships with more than just our Northwestern human relatives. Open to all students, faculty, staff and community members. Weather can be unpredictable during this time of year, so please plan to dress accordingly. 

Why are we doing campus walks? We are hoping to create awareness of and build relationships with the campus beyond people and buildings, with our more-than-human relatives. Walking the campus in this way will help reorient us to this land, which are the homelands of many. Participants will gain a new perspective on the campus where they work, learn, and live. 

Nov 23 - Campus Art and Exhibits


There are some amazing museums around the world that highlight Indigenous communities and art, such as Onöhsagwë:de’ Cultural Center in New York, the Heard Museum in Arizona, and of course, the Smithsonian Museum of the American Indian in Washington D.C. There are even some local museums such as the Mitchell Museum of the American Indian in Evanston, the Trickster Art Gallery in Schaumburg, or the Field Museum in Chicago (where the Native American Hall is undergoing renovation as we speak!). However, there are also several resources right here on Northwestern’s campus for opportunities to engage with learning about Native Peoples from past to present. Beyond formal exhibits, there are also little nuggets of Indigenous representation that can be found on the walls throughout campus. While some of the art is temporarily showcased, other exhibits are permanently displayed. Below you will find a list of some of the places you can visit throughout campus. 

Key Facts 

The University is undertaking several steps to promote learning about John Evans, his past and to work toward the present and future wellbeing of Cheyenne and Arapaho people and of the Native peoples on whose homelands the University sits. Evans, one of the co-founders of Northwestern and a long-time member of its Board of Trustees, served as Governor of Colorado Territories from 1862–65, a role that included acting as Superintendent of Indian Affairs. It was during this time, that the bloody Sand Creek Massacre occurred in which scores of Cheyenne and Arapaho people, mostly women and children, were slaughtered by a volunteer army regiment. Northwestern University acknowledges this fact as well as the multi-generational trauma that the Sand Creek Massacre caused for Cheyenne and Arapaho peoples. A comprehensive exhibit about Evans and his role in the massacre will be created for display in the John Evans Center, the building located at the corner of Clark Street and Sheridan Road. 


Indigenous Tour of Northwestern 

Led by Dr. Patty Loew and a team of students and faculty, an Indigenous Tour of Northwestern was launched on October 14, Indigenous Peoples Day 2019. It is a virtual walking tour that facilitates learning about Native people, places, and initiatives that connect to Northwestern University including the first Native doctors and dentists, 1903 football game against the Carlisle Indian School, "Rights of Nature" and the food sovereignty movement. You can take this tour by downloading the app or visiting the weblink here. Even for those joining from across the globe, the virtual Indigenous Tour of Northwestern is a great option to engage with historical and contemporary issues within the Native American community.  

More Recommendations: 

  • The James L. Allen Center (bonus: this is also a stop on the Indigenous Tour) houses one of the largest collections of Inuit art in the Midwest. If individuals or small groups would like to visit the Allen Center to view the art, they can make arrangements via e-mail with Gina Green, Program Manager and the Custodian of the art collection for Kellogg, at All visits are by appointment only and must be made in advance, on weekdays during normal business hours.  
  • Rebecca Crown Center, West Tower, 1st Floor, has a temporary display of an eight-portrait collection of paintings by Chares King Bird. These portraits were included as lithographs in Thomas McKenney and James Hall’s three-volume series History of the Indian Tribes of North America, first published in 1837. King painted leaders from myriad Native Nations while they were in Washington DC on diplomatic missions to the United States. This collection is on loan from the Center for Native American and Indigenous Research and was originally donated by alumna LaVonne Brown Ruoff (SESP53, GSESP54, 66). 
  • Women’s Center- 2nd Floor Library has framed prints of photos of women taken by Swinomish and Tulalip photographer Matika Wilbur. Learn more about using their space for your meetings or gatherings.  
  • The Block Museum- Tour their online collection of over 6,000 artworks (and their Looking 101 Exhibition if you missed our November 14th event).  

Nov 24 - Thanksgiving


Thanksgiving can be a complicated time for Native Americans in this country. Celebrating with loved ones and offering thanks to the land, water, animals, and people that sustain our lives and home is a core value of many Native communities. However, Thanksgiving can place Native Americans in the past while not paying much consideration for contemporary Indigenous Peoples. School reenactments, arts and crafts projects, and false narratives can make this time triggering for Native Peoples. 

“Most texts and supplementary materials portray Native Americans at the gathering as supporting players. They are depicted as nameless, faceless, generic “Indians” who merely shared a meal with the intrepid Pilgrims. The real story is much deeper, richer, and more nuanced. The Indians in attendance, the Wampanoag, played a lead role in this historic encounter, and they had been essential to the survival of the colonists during the newcomers’ first year. The Wampanoag were a people with a sophisticated society who had occupied the region for thousands of years. They had their own government, their own religious and philosophical beliefs, their own knowledge system, and their own culture. They were also a people for whom giving thanks was a part of daily life.”1 

This year, in addition to giving thanks, spending time with family, eating turkey, and watching football, consider your relationships with the land, water animals, community, and your relationships with the people that have been here since time immemorial.  

Haudenosaunee Thanksgiving Address 

For many years, the Haudenosaunee (Iroquois Confederacy) have been offering thanks to all of the more-than-human relatives that support our world. This address is offered before large events and social gatherings and is a way to remind us that we are but one of many on this planet. Thanks are given to the waters, the land, the plants, medicines, berries, strawberries, animals, the earth, thunders, four winds, and the Creator. This practice helps to remind the Haudenosaunee that our lives are entangled with every life on this world and that we need to be thankful and nurture those relationships.  

National Day of Mourning 

In, 1970 Wamasutta, also known as Frank James, was asked to deliver a speech to the descendants of Pilgrims during their annual Thanksgiving celebration. Wamasutta accepted and wrote a speech on the early encounters between Pilgrims and Wampanoag and the historical and continued oppression that resulted from those encounters. When they asked to see a draft of the speech prior to Wamasutta delivering it, the descendants were shocked. They expected as speech that celebrated and furthered the dominant narrative around Thanksgiving. This was not the speech they were expecting to hear and they asked him to rewrite it. When Wamasutta refused, they rescinded their offer to have him speak. This resulted in Wamasutta declaring a National Day of Mourning and organizing a protest. The National Day of Mourning continues to take place on the 4th Thursday of November.  

More Recommendations:  

Links to resources 

Nov 25 - MMIWG2S

Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls epidemic (MMIWG) is an issue currently affecting Indigenous people in Canada and the United States. The National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls was established in September 2016 in Canada. The final report was released on June 3, 2019. 

Here in the United States, the Urban Indian Health Institute (UIHI), a tribal epidemiology center, studied the number and dynamics of cases of missing and murdered American Indian and Alaska Native women and girls in cities across the United States.  This study sought to assess why obtaining data on this violence is so difficult, how law enforcement agencies are tracking and responding to these cases, and how media is reporting on them. The study’s intention was to provide a comprehensive snapshot of the MMIWG crisis in urban American Indian and Alaska Native communities and the institutional practices that allow them to disappear not once, but three times—in life, in the media, and in the data.  In 2019, the UIHI released a report MMIWG: We Demand More. It calls for government agencies to do better for missing and murdered indigenous women and girls. View the toolkit here. 

The United States Congress declared May 5, as “National Day of Awareness for Missing and Murdered Native Women and Girls.” The resolution was sponsored by Sen. Steve Daines (R-Mont.) The National Day of MMIWG awareness is designated on Hanna Harris’ birthday, a Northern Cheyenne member who was murdered in July 2013.  


The abbreviations stand for Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women; Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls; and Missing and Murdered Women, Girls and 2-Spirit People, respectively. These hashtags are one of the many ways in which Indigenous peoples have been raising awareness about the epidemic of extreme violence against their women and girls. 

For additional information: 

Lakota People’s Law Project 

Coalition to Stop Violence Against Native Women (CSVANW) 

Website to compile MMIP cases launched by Blackfeet Community College 

Addressing the Epidemic of Missing & Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls 

Nov 26 - Supporting Native American Businesses - Online shops

Cherokee entrepreneur, Gary Davies, describes entrepreneurship as “one of the most traditional activities in [the Native American] community -- trading and working together through commerce.” Tribal nations and individuals have engaged in economic development for centuries. Still today, tribal nations and individuals are continuing these practices “to sustain and create engagement between not just their own individual communities but also abroad”. Despite misconceptions, contemporary tribal businesses do not only include casinos. There are countless of tribal-owned companies and organizations in areas such as hospitality, tourism, retail, energy, real estate, and transportation, just to name a few. A number of these companies have online shops where owners can reach a wider audience and tap into the trillion-dollar e-commerce market, boosting economic development within Indigenous communities.  

Quick Fact:  

In order to protect both Native American artists as well as buyers of Native American art, Congress created a truth-in-advertising law, the Indian Arts and Crafts Act of 1990, to prevent any art or craft to be marketed in a way that “falsely suggests it is Indian produced, an Indian product, or the product of a particular Indian or Indian tribe or Indian arts and crafts organization, resident within the United States”. Read “Who you’re insulting when you buy Native-American-inspired things" by Connie Wang.  The markets listed below are all Native American owned enterprises.  


Food & Food Sovereignty 

  • Red Lake Nation Foods (Walleye/Wild Rice) a Native American owned company, dedicated to producing unique specialty products. They are the ONLY American Indian tribe in the U.S. that grows & harvests their own wild rice (MN Cultivated) on local lands.  
  • Bedré Chocolates, owned by the Chickasaw Nation in Oklahoma, is the only Native American tribe to create its own brand of fine chocolate 


  • Beyond Buckskin is a website and business dedicated to promoting and selling Native American made fashion, headed by Dr. Jessica Metcalfe (Turtle Mountain Chippewa). 
  • B.YELLOWTAIL- is a Native American owned fashion & accessories brand that specializes in storytelling through wearable art. Founded by Bethany Yellowtail (Crow (Apsaalooke) & Northern Cheyenne (Tsetsehestahese & So’taeo’o) Nations).  
  • The NTVS is for everyone who supports indigenous culture. They want you to buy authentic “Native made” designs opposed to knock-off indigenous art you find at big box stores and online. 

Wool Blankets 


Dream Warriors, Indigenous Management Company made up of a collective of Indigenous artists who believe in pursuing passions, dreams, and gifts to better loved ones and communities while also uplifting others 

Buy Native: Support Local  

Check out Beyond Buckskin’s list of Native-owned artists. Areas include:  

Finally, if you are a Native American entrepreneur, check out the Native American Chamber of Commerce of Illinois 

Nov 27 - Music


Through music, Native Americans celebrate life, tribal identity, and the survival of tribal culture. The definition, creation, performance, style, and purpose vary according to time and history, location, cultural values and tradition.  

Native American Music  

Native American music consists primarily of songs, dances and musical instruments. While Native Americans use instruments in most of their music, they rarely play instrumental pieces, as singing is considered the most important part of the music, along with drumming.   

For centuries the heartbeat of the Native American culture has resonated through the beat of the Drum. Though various Native American tribes have different traditions regarding the Drum, in all of them it remains one of the most important and highly regarded instruments of the tribe. Some Drums are constructed of a wooden frame, or a carved and hollowed-out log, with deer, elk, horse or buffalo hides stretched taut across the opening by sinew thongs.  

Rusty Cozad, a Kiowa veteran of the Native American Drum, explains how singing with the Drum is about more than just the music it produces, how it is an honor to sit down and sing with the Drum, and what it means to those hearing the beat it produces, in this video. For some tribes, songs may play a vital role in ceremonies, with stories being retold and kept alive. These historical narratives vary widely from tribe to tribe and are an integral part of tribal identity.  

The film Rumble: The Indians Who Rocked the World, highlights the many contributions Native Americans have made to popular music from artists such as, Link Wray, Robbie Robertson of The Band, Buffy Sainte-Marie, Jimi Hendrix, Taboo of Black Eyed Peas, Mildred Bailey, and more.  

More Recommendations: 

Nov 28 - Artifacts of Indigenous Joy with Tarapuhi and MahMah

Join us Monday, November 28th, at 5.30PM CST, for a virtual conversation and making session with Māori anthropologists Tarapuhi Vaeau and MahMah Tetini! This program will focus on honoring Indigenous joy through the creation of an artifact in the form of a decorated picture frame. Participants will be encouraged to have an item ready to frame and share their creation. While customizing the frames, Tarapuhi and MahMah will share reflections and anecdotes related to the topic of Indigenous joy and frivolous acts of pleasure. All materials will be provided by MSA. 

About our conversation leaders: 

Tarapuhi Vaeau’s research focuses on the ways that neoliberal constructions of health (re)traumatize Māori and that through mātauranga Māori, Māori can resist neoliberal processes. Tarapuhi will be joining us from Whangārei, Aotearoa (New Zealand), she is currently a PhD Student at Victoria University of Wellington. 

MahMah Tetini is currently a PhD Candidate at the University of Canterbury. Her research centers the amplification of Indigenous and Pasifika voices within climate change spaces. MahMah will be joining us from Ōtautahi, Aotearoa (Christchurch, New Zealand), you can follow their Instagram @pori.mahmah 

Nov 29 - Anniversary of the Sand Creek Massacre

On November 29th, 1864, while John Evans was governor of Colorado and territorial superintendent of Indian Affairs, a Cheyenne and Arapaho village along Sand Creek in the Colorado Territory was attacked by United States soldiers. Around 200 Cheyenne and Arapaho people were killed, most of them women, children and elders. 

The Sand Creek Massacre remains one of the worst atrocities committed by US soldiers in history and remains in the recent memory of Cheyenne and Arapaho people. As an institution founded by John Evans, it is within Northwestern University's obligation to assist the healing from these events.  Numerous events are held each year to learn about and learn from the Sand Creek Massacre, including a commemoration of the event held every November. 

Learn more about the tragedy of the Sand Creek Massacre and read first-hand accounts from U.S. soldiers, which helped lead to the establishment of the Sand Creek Massacre National Historic Site. 

Report of the Native American Outreach and Inclusion Task Force 

University of Denver Task Force on Native American Inclusivity Report 

Nov 30 - Beyond Native American Heritage Month 

In 1990, November was officially designated as “National American Indian Heritage Month” through a joint resolution approved by President George H. W. Bush. According to the National Congress of American Indians (NCAI), Native American Heritage Month is “an opportune time to educate the general public about tribes, to raise a general awareness about the unique challenges Native people have faced both historically and in the present, and the ways in which tribal citizens have worked to conquer these challenges.”  


Northwestern’s Multicultural Student Affairs began celebrating Native American Heritage Month in 2015 through a variety of events, including guest speakers, panel discussions, films, social gatherings, theatrical performances and literary forums, just to name a few. For the second year, teamed with departments and units across the university, Northwestern celebrated “30 Days of Indigenous” with a month-long series of programming, educational offerings and invitations to deepen engagement and learning. The daily opportunities honored Indigenous history and past, celebrated their present and future, engaged the diversity and complexity of lived experiences within communities, and aimed to raise awareness and visibility for Native American and Indigenous communities across campus. While the University remains remote, this celebration offers an opportunity to continue to deepen learning and community engagement with Indigenous Peoples.   


Here are a few ways you can continue to engage with the Native American and Indigenous community at Northwestern and beyond throughout the rest of the year: