Native American Heritage Month


Nehemiah Christopher, Staff Writer

     Native American Heritage Month is the celebration of Native American culture during the month of November. Native American Heritage month was declared to be celebrated at this time by President H. W. Bush on Aug.t 3, 1990. 

     Native American Heritage Month is intended to celebrate Native American contributions, culture and traditions. People often celebrate by visiting museums, Heritage Centers and historical sights along with reading Native American stories and eating Native American foods.

     Native American heritage Month was not always celebrated as a month. In 1915, the Annual Congress of The American Indian Association Meeting in Lawrence, Kansas, approved a plan to make a day to honor Indigenous Americans. In 1914, a Native American by the name of Red Fox James rode a horse from state to state seeking approval of a day to celebrate Native Americans. By 1915 he was able to present 24 states’ endorsements to the White House, however, there was no record of the day being proclaimed. 

     In 1916, American Indian Day was declared on the second Saturday of May by the New York governor and afterward, other states began to celebrate it on Sep. 24. In 1919, legislators enacted the day, however it was not considered a national legal holiday by many. Then in 1990, President George H. W. Bush declared November to be National Native American Heritage Month. 

     Native American Heritage Month is celebrated today by the reflection on the accomplishments of Native Americans. It is a time to look back on the impact and influence that they had on America, from the names of states to the everyday activities of American citizens.