Special Events

Indigenous Peoples Day – 2021 Celebration!


Potawatomi Removals:  Forced and “Voluntary”

Zoom Webinar on Monday, Oct 11 at 7PM ET

The removals of many Potawatomi from the land regions of around southern Lake Michigan – the result of socio-political, cultural conflict, and diminishing resource pressures – is the focus of this event. The “voluntary” removals, largely traced back to the Chicago 1833 treaty, and one forced removal, the Trail of Death, will be discussed in detail by our speaker, Dr. George Godfrey, whose presentation is supported by a Global Arts + Humanities Discovery Theme grant.

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George Godfrey, a citizen Potawatomi, grew up on the Potawatomi, Sisseton-Whapeton Sioux, Hopi, Omaha, and Winnebago reservations. After receiving his doctorate from Cornell University, he researched Lepidoptera at the Illinois Natural History Survey, became a faculty member and then a university administrator at Haskell Indian Nations University before serving as National Program Leader for the U.S. Department of Agriculture, where he assisted 31 Tribal Colleges and Universities in the development of their undergraduate curricula and research programs.  In addition to his 40+ scientific publications, he has written six books, Watchekee (Overseer) Walking in Two Cultures, Once a Grass Widow: Watchekee’s Destiny, The Indian Marble, Road to Uncertainty: Trials of Potawatomi Removals, Cheyenne Oil and A Perilous Journey.  Dr. Godfrey also is President of the Potawatomi Trail of Death Association (www.potawatomi-tda.org), which memorializes the trail that the Potawatomi took when forcibly removed from northcentral Indiana and taken to east central Kansas in 1838. He is a traditional powwow dancer and storyteller and, with his Pat, have three to nine grown children ‒ depending on how you count.