Treaty of Canandaigua Arrives at National Museum of the American Indian
The National Museum of the American Indian in Washington, D.C. got a special delivery on Monday, September 8. The Treaty of Canandaigua between the Haudenosaunee (the Six Nations, or Iroquois Confederacy) and the United States, signed by George Washington in 1794 was delivered to NMAI from the National Archives and Records Administration.
Chief Oren Lyons, Ph.D., the Faithkeeper of the Turtle Clan of the Seneca Nations of the Haudenosaunee Confederacy along with NMAI Museum Director Kevin Gover, were on hand for the delivery of the Treaty of Canandaigua.
The treaty is on loan and has never been displayed at this magnitude. It is a part of NMAI’s exhibit “Nation to Nation: Treaties Between the United States and American Indian Nations,” which begins September 21.
The exhibit focuses on eight treaties representing the some 374 ratified between the United States and Native nations. “Each document details and solidifies the diplomatic agreements between the United States and the neighboring Native Nations. Told from the point of view of the Indian Nations and accompanied by U.S. testimonials, curated by Suzan Shown Harjo (Cheyenne/Hodulgee Muscogee) the story is woven through five sections: Introduction to Treaties, Serious Diplomacy, Bad Acts, Bad Paper, Great Nations Keep Their Word and Reflections,” according to a press release from NMAI.
The more than 125 objects “the story of our early ancestors and our efforts to live side-by-side at the birth of the United States,” says the release. Objects on display include the Navajo blanket owned by General William Sherman, a collection of Plains Nations pipes and beaded pipe bags, peace medals given to Thomas Jefferson, George Washington, and the sword and scabbard of Andrew Jackson.
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