It’s Native American Heritage Month, and we have resources at the Library and online so that you can learn more.
One of our best-attended programs from Humanities Montana over the past year was Chris La Tray’s “The Day that Finally Came,” a presentation about the history of the Little Shell Tribe and the Métis. Don’t worry if you missed it – there’s now a recording of this talk available online through the Montana State Library’s YouTube channel. We also have several of La Tray’s works available to check out, including “Descended from a Travel-worn Satchel: Haiku and Haibun” (2021) and “One-Sentence Journal: Short Poems and Essays from the World at Large” (2018).
One good place to start learning more about local Métis history is an online archive called the Montana Memory Project (MMP). There are two collections of oral histories specific to the Métis: “Hi-Line Métis” and “Central Montana Métis,” both featuring interviews conducted by Central Montana local Candi Zion. You might also browse through the Central Montana Historical Photographs Collection, which was curated from our archives by local historian Nancy Watts.
If you would like to learn more about Native American and Indigenous communities around the world, you might want to dive into Google Arts & Culture. It’s an online platform that lets you explore museums, curated photo exhibits, and much, much more. A good starting place for this topic might be “Indigenous Americas,” a selection of stories, photos, and artwork that includes everything from music samples to virtual tours of the Mesa Verde cliff dwellings.
Another good starting point is, of course, your local library. As always, please let us know if we can help you find anything.