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Six programs on Native-American heritage among 23 events at the museums of the state of Delaware during September 2014

Date Posted: Monday, August 25th, 2014
Categories:  Historical and Cultural Affairs Kent County News Sussex County

-New programs added; changes made to previously announced events-

The Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs will be sponsoring 23 special events during the month of September 2014 at the museums of the state of Delaware. Six of the events—on Sept. 1, 6, 13, 20 and 27—will explore the First State’s rich Native-American heritage including programs on the Lenape and Nanticoke Indian tribes. A schedule of all of the division’s September special programs is listed below. Except for the lecture/tours of His Majesty’s Sloop DeBraak, admission for all programs is free and open to the public. For additional information, call 302-744-5055.

Elected Chief Dennis Coker of the Lenape Indian Tribe of Delaware (right) talks with King Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden during the May 2013 ceremonies commemorating the 375th anniversary of the founding of New Sweden. Chief Coker will be speaking at the program, “The Test of Time: The Relationship Between the Lenape Indian Tribe of Delaware and the Swedish Royal Family,” at The Old State House on Sept. 1, 2014.

Elected Chief Dennis Coker of the Lenape Indian Tribe of Delaware (right) talks with King Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden during the May 2013 ceremonies commemorating the 375th anniversary of the founding of New Sweden. Chief Coker will be speaking at the program, “The Test of Time: The Relationship Between the Lenape Indian Tribe of Delaware and the Swedish Royal Family,” at The Old State House on Sept. 1, 2014.

According to Nena Todd, site supervisor for the state’s downtown Dover museums, September is a time for Native-American people to return to their homelands. Traditionally, the coming of cooler weather provided a signal for native peoples to transition from their summer hunting and fishing grounds to more secure winter lodging. This tradition of seasonal travel continues in today’s Native-American communities with September serving as a time when families come together and communities celebrate their heritage. One of Delaware’s most well-known Native-American celebrations is the annual Nanticoke Indian Pow-Wow that will take place this year on Sept. 6 and 7.

Administered by the Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs, the six museums of the state of Delaware—New Castle Court House Museum, John Dickinson Plantation, First State Heritage Park Welcome Center and Galleries, The Old State House, The Johnson Victrola Museum and the Zwaanendael Museum—tell the story of Delaware’s contributions to the history and culture of the United States. Through displays, exhibits and special programs, the museums explore how the state’s distinctive physical environment, in combination with the people who came to live there, gave Delaware an identity that is different from any other place.

Special events at the museums of the state of Delaware, September 2014:

Monday, Sept. 1, 2014
“An Illegal Activity.” Utilizing the exhibit “An Illegal Activity: The Underground Railroad in Delaware” as a backdrop, guided tours will explore Delaware’s crucial role in the Underground Railroad and on two Delaware leaders who aided in this “freedom enterprise.” First State Heritage Park Welcome Center and Galleries, Delaware Public Archives building, 121 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., Dover. Tours at 10 a.m., Noon and 2 p.m. Museum open 8 9 a.m.–4:30 p.m. 302-744-5055. Note change in museum hours.

Monday, Sept. 1, 2014
“The Star Spangled Banner: Then and Now.” Programs examine the development of America’s national anthem through time with original recordings played on authentic Victor Talking Machines. Johnson Victrola Museum, 375 S. New St., Dover. Programs at 11 a.m. and 2 3 p.m. Museum open 9 a.m.–4:30 p.m. 302-744-5055. Note time change.

Display of Victor Talking Machines at the Johnson Victrola Museum.

Display of Victor Talking Machines at the Johnson Victrola Museum.

Monday, Sept. 1, 2014
“The Test of Time: The Relationship Between the Lenape Indian Tribe of Delaware and the Swedish Royal Family.” Elected Chief Dennis Coker discusses the rekindling of that relationship after 300 years and the advancements made by both communities. The Old State House, 25 The Green, Dover. Program at 1 p.m. Museum open 9 a.m.–4:30 p.m. 302-744-5055.

Thursdays, Sept. 4, 11, 18 and 25, 2014
“Taper Thursdays.” Learn to make your own candle and help the plantation dip 200 candles that John Dickinson would have required from his tenants are part of their leases. John Dickinson Plantation, 340 Kitts Hummock Road, Dover. Program 11 a.m.–2:30 p.m. Museum open 10 a.m.–3:30 p.m. 302-739-3277.

Saturday, Sept. 6, 2014
“Drums, Drums, Drums.” Guided tours explore Victor Talking Machine Company founder E.R. Johnson’s role in making music a fundamental subject in public education and in helping children to become familiar with the most popular musical instruments. In this program, visitors will learn about the significance of drums as both a means of communication and as entertainment, featuring original recordings played on authentic Victor Talking Machines. First Saturday in the First State program. Johnson Victrola Museum, 375 S. New St., Dover. 9 a.m.–4:30 p.m. 302-744-5055.

Saturday, Sept. 6, 2014
“An Illegal Activity.” Utilizing the exhibit “An Illegal Activity: The Underground Railroad in Delaware” as a backdrop, guided tours will explore Delaware’s crucial role in the Underground Railroad and on two Delaware leaders who aided in this “freedom enterprise.” First Saturday in the First State program. First State Heritage Park Welcome Center and Galleries, Delaware Public Archives building, 121 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., Dover. Tours at 10 a.m., Noon and 2 p.m. Museum open 9 a.m.–4:30 p.m. 302-744-5055.

Saturday, Sept. 6, 2014
“Delaware’s Native People and Archaeological Study.” Program examines Native-American artifacts from the collections of the state of Delaware and how those artifacts interpret the rich culture of the first residents of the First State. First Saturday in the First State program. The Old State House, 25 The Green, Dover. Program at 1 p.m. Museum open 9 a.m.–4:30 p.m. 302-744-5055.

Mondays, Sept. 8, 15, 22 and 29, 2014
Lecture/tour of His Majesty’s Sloop DeBraak. Explore the history of the DeBraak which was capsized and lost off the Delaware coast on May 25, 1798. Program includes a trip to the hull facility in nearby Cape Henlopen State Park for a tour of the surviving section of the ship’s hull. Zwaanendael Museum, 102 Kings Highway, Lewes. Programs at 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. Limited seating. Admission $10 in advance by reservation through the Shop Delaware website. For additional information, call 302-645-1148.

Artistic rendition of the capsizing of the DeBraak by Peggy Kane, 1990.

Artistic rendition of the capsizing of the DeBraak by Peggy Kane, 1990.

 Saturday, Sept. 13, 2014
“The First People of the First State: A Lenape Celebration of Heritage.” Third annual celebration featuring the Lenape Indian Tribe of Delaware as they honor mother earth and Native-American culture with dancing and demonstrations. The Old State House, 25 The Green, Dover. Celebration Noon 10 a.m.–4 p.m. Museum open 9 a.m.–4:30 p.m. 302-744-5055. Note time change.

Saturday, Sept. 13, 2014
Demonstrations by the Thistledown Fiber Arts Guild.Program explores spinning, weaving, knitting and other fabric arts. John Dickinson Plantation, 340 Kitts Hummock Road, Dover. Program 1–3 p.m. Museum open 10 a.m.–3:30 p.m. 302-739-3277.

Saturday, Sept. 13, 2014
“The Star Spangled Banner: Then and Now.” Program examines the development of America’s national anthem through time with original recordings played on authentic Victor Talking Machines. Johnson Victrola Museum, 375 S. New St., Dover. Program 2 p.m. Museum open 9 a.m.–4:30 p.m. 302-744-5055. Recently added program.

Saturday, Sept. 20, 2014
“Hearth Cooking Basics.” Hands-on workshop. John Dickinson Plantation, 340 Kitts Hummock Road, Dover. Program 11 a.m.–1 p.m. Museum open 10 a.m.–3:30 p.m. 302-739-3277.

Saturdays, Sept. 20 and 27, 2014
“First People of the First State.” Two-part lecture, based on the research of Delaware archaeologist Cara Blume, explores Delaware’s Native-American communities of the past and present. The Old State House, 25 The Green, Dover. Program at 1 p.m. on both days. Museum open 9 a.m.–4:30 p.m. 302-744-5055. Programs cancelled.

Saturday Sept. 20, 2014
“Lost and Found: Native American Identity in Delaware’s Public Schools.” Panel discussion examines the challenges that Delaware’s Native-American students faced during segregation and the subsequent integration of the public schools. The Old State House, 25 The Green, Dover. Program at 1 p.m. Museum open 9 a.m.–4:30 p.m. 302-744-5055. Recently added program.

Saturday, Sept. 27, 2014
Arts in the Estuary.”Celebrate National Estuaries Day from the artistic viewpoint including the work of artisans, performers and authors. Partnership with the St. Jones Reserve. 10 a.m.–2 p.m. John Dickinson Plantation, 340 Kitts Hummock Road and St. Jones Reserve, 818 Kitts Hummock Road, Dover. 302-739-3277.

Saturday Sept. 27, 2014
“Smoked, Pickled and Salted for Survival.” Learn how smoked, pickled and salted meats helped stretch food reserves in the winter, and participate in pickling meats with brine and smoking meats in the plantation’s smokehouse. John Dickinson Plantation, 340 Kitts Hummock Road, Dover. Program 11 a.m.–2:30 p.m. Museum open 10 a.m.–3:30 p.m. 302-739-3277.

Historic-site interpreters outside the John Dickinson Plantation’s smokehouse.

Historic-site interpreters outside the John Dickinson Plantation’s smokehouse.

 Saturday Sept. 27, 2014
“Surviving Invasion: Learning About the First Peoples of the First State.” Based on the research of Dr. Cara Blume, this lecture will explore Delaware’s Native-American communities of the past and present. The Old State House, 25 The Green, Dover. Program at 1 p.m. Museum open 9 a.m.–4:30 p.m. 302-744-5055. Recently added program.

Saturday, Sept. 27, 2014
Native-American-themed program. Speaker TBD. “Capt. John Smith and his Encounter with the Nanticoke Indians.” Lecture by archaeologist Dan Griffith explores the natural environment of the Nanticoke River watershed in the early 17th century with a focus on the indigenous Nanticoke Indians and their encounter with Capt. John Smith. Zwaanendael Museum, 102 Kings Highway, Lewes. Program at 2 p.m. Museum open 10 a.m.–4:30 p.m. 302-645-1148. Note additional program description.

-End-

Contact:
Jim Yurasek
Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs
Phone:  302-736-7413
E-mail:  Jim.Yurasek@state.de.us
Web:   http://history.delaware.gov

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