Monday, October 18 at 9:00 p.m.
After the Mayflower
In March of 1621, in what is now southeastern Massachusetts, Massasoit (actor Marcos Akiaten, Chiricauha Apache), the leading sachem of the Wampanoag, sat down to negotiate with a ragged group of English colonists. Hungry, dirty and sick, the pale-skinned foreigners were struggling to stay alive; they were in desperate need of Native help. Five decades of English immigration, mistreatment, lethal epidemics and widespread environmental degradation had brought the Indians and their way of life to the brink of disaster. Led by Metacom, Massasoit’s son (actor Annowon Weeden, Mashpee Wampanoag), the Wampanoag and their Native allies fought back against the English, nearly pushing them into the sea.
Monday, October 25 at 9:00 p.m.
In the spring of 1805, Tenskwatawa, a Shawnee, fell into a trance so deep that those around him believed he had died. When he finally stirred, the young prophet claimed to have met the Master of Life. He told that the Indians were in dire straits because they had adopted white culture and rejected traditional spiritual ways. For several years, Tenskwatawa’s movement drew thousands from tribes across the Midwest. His elder brother, Tecumseh, would harness the energies of that renewal to create an military and political confederacy of often antagonistic tribes, all committed to stopping white westward expansion. The dream of an independent Indian state may have died, but the great Shawnee warrior would live on as a potent symbol of Native pride and pan-Indian identity.
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