Friday, December 15, 2006

American History Doubleheader

Robert Bellinger
Bellinger shows Civil War muster roles
Wrapping up the fall Voices Rising seminar series teachers learned how to access the National Archives and the role of Indian Voices in Early America. On Wednesday, December 13th, Robert Bellinger from Suffolk University demonstrated the breadth of primary source materials available through the National Archives. Through investigation of 1850 and 1860 slave census records teachers were able to draw conclusions about how family structures evolved. Examining documents from the Freedman's Bureau (1865-1872) teachers learned that one slave couple had been together for over 50 years before their marriage became officially recognized. Bellinger recommended a visit to the local branch of the National Archives located in Waltham, MA.
Professor Malinda Maynor Lowery (Lumbee)
On Thursday, December 14th, Professor Malinda Maynor Lowery from Harvard University discussed native American identity. She used a series of 18th and 19th century portraits to show how Native Americans were portrayed before and after the American Revolution. Lowery, a member of the Lumbee Nation orginating from North Carolina helped teachers understand how native culture was shaped through kinship, migration, and disease. Teachers read passages from Colin Calloway's, The World Turned Upside Down: Indian Voices from Early America. Musician Willie French Lowery (Lumbee) entertains teachersThe session ended with a musical performance by Willie French Lowery a Lumbee Indian singer, songwriter and guitarist. Willie had everyone out of their seats and in good spirits as we closed the session.