This September the OMA traveled to Washington DC to attend and present at the 2015 International Conference of Indigenous Archives, Libraries, and Museums hosted by the Association for Tribal Archives, Libraries, and Museums; check out the ATALM website
The OMA presented twice regarding a research study about successful collaborations between tribal and non-tribal institutions, first at a pre-conference archives summit and then as a session within the program.
Archives Summit: Protocols for Native American Archival Materials
Since the development of The Protocols for Native American Archival Materials in 2006, the document has generated significant discussion and debate both nationally and internationally surrounding the proper care of Indigenous archives housed at non-tribal repositories and how these guidelines should be successfully implemented. Numerous non-tribal repositories successfully implemented and developed collaborative guidelines and relationships with tribal communities. Based on the original intent of the Protocols as a living document, this pre-conference Summit brought together original drafters of the Protocols, as well as allies in the United States and Canada, to review and reflect on lessons learned from the Protocols and other key documents, to make clarifying alterations and updates to the document based on case studies, conversations, and research. The group will develop additional information regarding the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples with the larger goal of contributing to the efforts of decolonizing Indigenous archives.
Workshop: Google Mapping Tools for Preserving Indigenous Knowledge
Maps can uniquely illustrate the close relationship between Indigenous communities and their land, enabling Indigenous communities to tell their own stories, in their own languages, from their own perspectives. During this hands on workshop, attendees learned how Indigenous communities are using free digital mapping tools such as Google Earth, Google Tour Builder, and Google My Maps to preserve and share traditional knowledge. The workshop included hands on technical training in using Google’s mapping tools to record culturally significant locations on a map and incorporate stories, photos, and videos into the map; and showed the options for keeping maps private or sharing maps publicly.
Special Event: Civil Rights, Identity and Sovereignty: Native American Perspectives on History, Law, and the Path Ahead
This even featured Walter Echo-Hawk (Pawnee), noted legal scholar and litigator on behalf of Native American and Indigenous civil and human rights; Malinda Maynor Lowery (Lumbee), historian, author and associate Professor at UNC Chapel Hill; Tim Tingle (Choctaw), story – teller and author of several books of historical fiction on the Native American experience; and LaDonna Harris (Comanche), President of Americans for Indian Opportunity and a long standing advocate for Native self-determination and self-sufficiency in the cultural and business worlds. The event included an exhibition of unique, historical documents, some dating back to the earliest days of the republic, with objects that illuminated the legal and legislative aspects of the symposium through artifacts detailing the complex relationship between sovereign Native American nations and the US federal government. The exhibit was produced by the Law Library’s Collections Division and is on display the foyer of the Library of Congress Auditorium.
Conference Presentation: Collaboration Between Tribal and Non-Tribal Organizations: Suggested Best Practices for Sharing Expertise, Knowledge, and Cultural Resources: A Research Study
Collaborations between tribal and non-tribal organizations bring diverse communities together, often for the first time, to educate and learn, to address misinterpretations of the past, and to share cultural resources and knowledge. Through an examination of data obtained through a national survey, this session will introduce a variety of collaborative practices and investigate how successful partnerships are initiated, developed, and maintained; the degree to which the Protocols for Native American Archival Materials are referenced in the development of policies and procedures; and “lessons learned” across a wide-range of collaborative projects and partnerships. This overview of a variety of models of collaboration is intended to offer a set of best practices for both tribal and non-tribal organizations interested in sharing useful skills, knowledge, and resources through partnerships. We presented our research findings, followed by a panel discussion featuring participants from several successful collaborative projects explored in the research data.
The OMA presented along with Elizabeth Joffrion, Director of Heritage Resources, Western Washington University. Our panelists included: Jennifer O’Neal, Corrigan Solari University Historian and Archivist, University of Oregon; Daryl Baldwin, Director, Myaamia Center at Miami University; Megan Dorey, Archivist, Myaamia Heritage Museum; Omar Polar, Outreach Coordinator, University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Library and Information Studies.
Click Here for Access to the Presentation: “Collaboration Between Tribal and Non-Tribal Organizations: Suggested Best Practices for Sharing Expertise, Knowledge, and Cultural Resources: A Research Study”