An Outline of Our Accomplishments
The spirit of sharing and teaching of the Clan of the Hawk has been felt from our own grounds in Evansville across northern Vermont and New Hampshire to the Province of Quebec.
Public Programs: We have presented nineteen annual Pow Wow's and thirteen annual craft shows. The craft shows have included vendors and craftspeople from many other tribes and from several states. These event are free and open to the public.
Classes: We have hosted programs ranging from drum making and dream-catcher making to leather crafts and language lessons. We have taught basket making, hide tanning, music and native dance.
Educational Programs: Chief Spirit Water, (aka Ralph Swett) and Jerome Kelley, War Chief have presented an Abenaki program to over forty school-groups, from kindergarten to High School. This program consists of lectures and demonstrations about Native American History and about Abenaki in Vermont, from early times to the present. At many of the schools we have also presented a program with our Clan Drum (Wabum). This is always a big hit wherever we go. Several schools have scheduled us to return on a yearly basis as part of their curriculum.
Joint Efforts: We are often asked to come to share our program at events sponsored by other groups and we have taught and/or performed at nursing homes, work camps and other gatherings in Vermont, New Hampshire and Canada. We have presented classes to retired teachers, garden clubs, nursing homes and scout groups.
Volunteer Efforts: We continue to present these free of charge because we feel it is important to keep the spirit and history of the Abenaki alive and recognized, especially in our school children. We do not request payment or even expense reimbursement for the programs we present.
Work in the Prisons: The Chief and other members have worked with probationers at the St. Johnsbury Probation office, and with Native inmates at the work camp in St. Johnsbury. They have taught some of the Native inmates about native ways and lore. They have hosted talking circles and craft sessions. By attending these sessions, some of these men earn points toward early release.
In the last two years we have hosted a Talking Circle at the Northern State Correctional Facility in Newport, and we hope it made a difference for those inmates. The Chief carries on a large personal correspondence with inmates all over the country.
Our Drums: In 1998, Using two generous grants from Vermont Youth Links, we made two drums in the Native traditional style, from moose hide and Cedar cores and many hours of volunteer labor. Our drum group has performed several times at the work camp and often at local schools and libraries. We have occasionally opened and/or closed the National Dowser’s convention gathering with the Wabum Drum Group. We have our own CD for sale and a song book to go with it.
Our Library: We now have the Chief Looking Glass Research Library consisting of records from Eastern Canada and the U.S. These are marriage, birth, death, christening and other records which go back to the 1600’s. The library is open to researchers for a small fee, by appointment only at this time. We are currently about halfway through a project to put all of these records on CD’s in PDF format. These will be available for use by the public, or hopefully to be purchased as singles or a set.
Seeking Donations: We function financially on small membership dues and donations from the public. As we are a federally approved 501(c)(3) non corporation, all donations, either in money or in kind are fully tax deductible and we are happy to provide receipts for donations of any size.