I have put this document/article in as a service to the many that have asked me what I knew about a National Native American Day or Month. I confess that I sought this out just as much for my own curiosity, for I had heard of nothing substantial along these lines either. The more I thought about it, the more it rather gnawed at me.
Well, on the face of it, it should not I suppose; however, in view of the fact that there are "Days and Months" for virtually everything else one can possibly imagine in this Country, there damn well sure should be one for the Native American!
So, I went out to
look, in the course of it all, the "things" that have a National Day are simply mindboggling, even downright hilarious to the extreme. I am not going to list
all of them them here, that would take the joy of finding them for yourselves away.
However, just to give you an idea, take a look at these:
· National Rocky Road Day -- June 2
· Ice Cream Soda Day -- June 20
· National Ice Cream Month -- July 1-31
· National Ice Cream Day (3rd Sunday in July)
· Creative Ice Cream Flavor Day -- July 1
· National Strawberry Sundae Day -- July 7
· National Ice Cream Day -- July 16, 2000
· National Peach Ice Cream Day -- July 17
· National Vanilla Ice Cream Day -- July 23
· National Ice Cream Soda Day -- August 2
· National Ice Cream Sandwich Day -- August 2
· National Creamsicle Day -- August 14
· National Spumoni Day -- August 21
· The Birth of the Ice Cream Cone -- September 21
· National Frappe Day -- October 7
· National Parfait Day -- November 25
· Ice Cream and Violins Day -- December 13
As for the article/document below I have cited the Source, and have placed it here in its entirety - make of it what you will.
My only question is this: Why does this National American Indian Month have to be "renewed" each year?
(CLICK HERE TO READ PROCLAMATION FOR 2001). Especially since it does not "cost" all that much to endow it with
permanency and what little cost it would have, making it permanent would certainly eliminate the year-to-year costs. Certainly a great many humorous type comments come to mind, but as well, so do some rather dark images. At any rate, make of the article what you will, as I said, it is but an attempt at replying to those friends of mine that have shared the question with me.
Creation of American Indian Heritage Month
Source: U.S. Dept. of the Interior, Bureau of Indian Affairs
Arthur C. Parker
started at the turn of the century as an effort to gain a day of
recognition for the significant contributions the first Americans made
to the establishment and growth of the U.S., has resulted in a whole
month being designated for that purpose.
One of the very proponents
of an American Indian Day was Dr. Arthur C. Parker, a Seneca Indian,
who was the director of the Museum of Arts and Science in Rochester,
N.Y. He persuaded the Boy
Scouts of America to set aside a day for the "First
Americans" and for three years they adopted such a day. In 1915,
the annual Congress of the American Indian Association meeting in
Lawrence, Kans., formally approved a plan concerning American Indian
Day. It directed its president, Rev. Sherman Coolidge, an Arapahoe, to
call upon the country to observe such a day. Coolidge issued a
proclamation on Sept. 28, 1915, which declared the second Saturday of
each May as an American Indian Day and contained the first formal
appeal for recognition of Indians as citizens.
The year before this proclamation was issued, Red Fox James, a
Blackfeet Indian, rode horseback from state to state seeking approval
for a day to honor Indians. On December 14, 1915, he presented the
endorsements of 24 state governments at the White House. There is no
record, however, of such a national day being proclaimed.
American Indian Day in a state was declared on the second Saturday in
May 1916 by the governor of N.Y. Several states celebrate the fourth
Friday in September. In Illinois, for example, legislators enacted
such a day in 1919. Presently, several states have designated Columbus
Day as Native American Day, but it continues to be a day we observe
without any recognition as a national legal holiday.
In 1990 President George
Bush approved a joint resolution designating November 1990
"National American Indian Heritage Month." Similar
proclamations have been issued each year since 1994. The theme for
2001 is "Our Children, Our Nations, Our Future."
(CLICK HERE TO READ PROCLAMATION FOR 2001)