South Dakota State University: SDSU Extension Releases Dakota and Lakota Traditional Games Resource Guide. “SDSU Extension recently released a resource guide on traditional Dakota and Lakota games. The free, downloadable guide contains six traditional Dakota games and six traditional Lakota games, including photos, instructions on how to play and how to craft the game pieces.” Not the largest resource I’ve ever mentioned, but not the kind of resource I see very often, either…
Hyperallergic: Newly Digitized Collection of Early 20th-Century Lakota Drawings Tells a Curious History. “In 1922, the Newberry Library acquired this collection of 160 drawings, attributed to ‘Sioux Indians’ living in Fort Yates, which serves as headquarters of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe. The three boxes of art were sold by one Aaron McGaffey Beede, an Episcopal missionary who had provided paper and art supplies to the residents he had come to know, and paid them small sums to purchase the resulting works. This strange exchange arose from a dire situation: in the winter of 1913-14, the Lakota faced starvation from failed crops and a mysterious disappearance of cattle. These drawings, for them, carried exceptional value linked to survival; today, they represent significant records of indigenous self-representation as well as cross-cultural exchange.”
In development: a digital archive of Lakota language and culture. “Some linguists predict that up to 90 percent of the world’s 7,000 languages will be extinct by the end of this century. Professor Richard Henne-Ochoa, education, is working to make sure Lakota is not among them. Spoken by the Lakota people, who are part of seven related Sioux Native American tribes indigenous to the Northern Plains of the United States, the language has been the focus of Henne-Ochoa’s research since he first visited the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation as a tourist more than two decades ago.”
I am a big fan of language preservation, which is why I was so happy to read this article on a new site that will publish news in Lakota. There are only a couple thousand Lakota speakers left. “Other media outlets provide news of interest to the community, but in English. Woihanble.com’s local news content comes from two area weeklies that mostly focus on Native American issues. The site has an agreement with those weeklies to translate stories into Lakota, with links back to the original articles. And in recognition that many people who speak the language well do not read it easily, news stories include audio clips in Lakota.” I went to the site to hear an audio clip. If you go to http://www.woihanble.com/#!pipeline/f2l81 it seems like the audio clip might be the whole story… I didn’t listen to it all the way through, but I listened to half of it.