Signs of Your Identity@signsofyouridentity

Investigating the legacy of forced assimilation policies on Indigenous children. Currently focused on US, Canada, Australia. Work by @dzalcman.

signsofyouridentity.com/

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Signs of Your Identity

Lisa Schrader (Lakota) went to both St. Joe’s Indian School and Red Cloud Indian School in South Dakota. “Healing requires acknowledgement,” she said. “And when we were taken away from our homes and we lost our language and we lost our culture and we lost our identity, no one ever told us, ‘Welcome home. I’m glad you made it back.’” #signsofyouridentity


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Signs of Your Identity

I think I could start an entire project just on archival photos of Indian boarding school sports teams. Here’s one of the Sherman Institute football team (date unknown) currently on display in the Sherman Indian Museum. #signsofyouridentity


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Signs of Your Identity

Going through some collected archival photos sitting on my desktop and came across this jarring image of students practicing penmanship at the Red Deer Indian Industrial School in Alberta, Canada. The school operated from 1889-1919. #signsofyouridentity


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Signs of Your Identity

Holy Family Mission, c. 1886. Blackfeet Reservation, Montana.


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Signs of Your Identity

The Fort Shaw Indian School girls’ basketball team at the 1904 World’s Fair. They performed mandolin recitals, demonstrations of gymnastics and calisthenics, and became World Champions. (📷: Jessie Tarbox Beals, Montana History Museum)


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Signs of Your Identity

The cemetery of the Holy Family Mission, which originally opened as a Catholic boarding school on the Blackfeet Reservation in 1889. The school closed in the early 1940s. #signsofyouridentity


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Signs of Your Identity

This is Willie Stevens, a Salish man who attended the Villa Ursula mission school as a day student from 1964-1972. “I come from the generation that lost its language and cultural identity. My parents didn’t want to teach us the language because they knew it would only hurt us. They knew we’d get in trouble at boarding school. So they tried to protect us. They even cut our hair.” #signsofyouridentity @opensocietyfoundations @insidenatgeo


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Signs of Your Identity

The site of the Battle of the Greasy Grass, also known as the Battle of the Little Bighorn. #signsofyouridentity


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Signs of Your Identity

Boys and girls wash clothes at the Crow Agency boarding school. Photo by Fred E. Miller, from roughly 1890-1900. #signsofyouridentity


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Signs of Your Identity

A group of Native Alaskan boarding school survivors tour what remains of the campus of the Carlisle Indian Industrial School in Pennsylvania. Carlisle was the first government run off-reservation Indian boarding school in America, and became the model for scores of similar institutions in the U.S. and Canada. This month marks the 100th anniversary since its closing. Roughly 12,000 students attended in the years it was open from 1879-1918, many of whom were taken from their communities and families by force. A cemetery on the grounds of what is now an Army facility contains the graves of 184 students who died while in attendance. #signsofyouridentity #carlisle #carlisleindianindustrialschool


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Signs of Your Identity

This is Dawn Neptune Adams, a Penobscot woman who spent about 16 of her first 18 years in foster care in the state of Maine. One of her earliest memories of the foster home where she spent most of her childhood was having her foster mother violently brush her teeth with soap when she spoke a few words of Penobscot. “People often ask what reconciliation looks like to me,” Dawn said. “But there can be no reconciliation as long as the behavior continues. Our children are still being placed in non-Native foster homes. And it’s a washing away of our identity.” #signsofyouridentity #maine #penobscot


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Signs of Your Identity

Inside one of the few structures that remain of the Fort Hall Indian School, which operated from 1904-1935 for Shoshone-Bannock children on the Fort Hall Reservation in Idaho. The buildings were later used to house German prisoners of war during WW2, and most of the campus was demolished in the 60s. #signsofyouridentity


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