Random Cool Things: Who Was Here Before You

Image credit: Native Land Digital

On the OARS call this Sunday, the speaker mentioned a very cool source of information, and guess what, it’s Canadian. The Owl loves Canada and Canadians, also other owls, trees, tacos, foxes and cake. More or less in that order. But before we digress into favorite foods and things, this is cooler.

How would you like to find out which Native tribes and peoples lived in your town? Or your parents’ town, or wherever you choose to be from. For the last year, it turns out there is an easy way to do so, and yeah, the Owl missed it. It’s hard to have one eyeball dilating differently from the other sometimes (true, an Owl coolness as a bonus today. You can read about that here later).

Text your town and state or your zip code to 907-312-5085 and be instantaneously gratified with the result (which I could tell you for Weston, but it’s more fun to get the response, no?) We’re on the lands of two tribes, and one of them is spelled not like you’d expect–and frankly would be a nightmare in a crossword puzzle. If you prefer to get the big picture, like in the image above, then you can also head over to their web page at Native Land Digital.

And then you’re down the rabbit hole. Because now you need to know more and understand more and there goes your whole morning. Oh wait, that might be me. From Native Land’s website:

Native Land Digital strives to create and foster conversations about the history of colonialism, Indigenous ways of knowing, and settler-Indigenous relations, through educational resources such as our map and Territory Acknowledgement Guide. We strive to go beyond old ways of talking about Indigenous people and to develop a platform where Indigenous communities can represent themselves and their histories on their own terms. In doing so, Native Land Digital creates spaces where non-Indigenous people can be invited and challenged to learn more about the lands they inhabit, the history of those lands, and how to actively be part of a better future going forward together.

Good on you, Canada. And thanks for sharing. Because of course, there was no Canada, and there was no United States when these tribes created their own history. Things to ponder.

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