“Looking at old pictures had also opened my mind up to do more research about my ancestors. Bringing back new ideas and new thoughts from the museum helped me want to learn more about my culture.” -Taylor Adams (Crow)
In the fourteenth spring, the Plains Indian Museum hosted high school students, tribal elders, and instructors from St. Labre Indian School in Ashland, Montana. The student’s fall visit is part of a collaborative program between St. Labre Indian Schools and the Plains Indian Museum. Skyler Bouyer (Crow/Cheyenne), Joaney Champ (Crow), La’Mya Hogan (Crow), Lanida Blackwolf (Cheyenne/Navajo), Taylor Adams (Crow), and Vince Brady (Cheyenne) examined objects and learned practical museum procedures. Their visit consisted of two days of intensive lessons with Center staff of the curatorial departments, collections management, exhibit production, and registration. The students also received special tours and played games with Samantha Harper of the McCracken Research Library, Jordan Davis and Rebekah Childers of Museum Services; Brandon Lewis of the Draper Museum Raptor Experience; and Hunter Old Elk of the Plains Indian Museum. The students were excellent representatives of the Northern Cheyenne, Crow, and Navajo Nations.
“My experience at the Buffalo Bill Center of the West was very exciting because I never knew that I was practicing museum procedures that college students would have to do to work at the museum. My favorite part of the tour is when we had a little scavenger hunt in the Plains Indian Museum for different things or flaws in the museum. I want to thank Hunter Old Elk and the others who showed us their daily jobs. I want to thank you for being kind to me and my classmates, and for showing us all types of different activities that were fun to experience.” -La’Mya Hogan (Crow)
“The trip was very fun. Even though I had already been on the trip I had a very fun and interesting experience. Being able to do different things from the previous year made the trip that much more interesting. Looking at old pictures had also opened my mind up to do more research about my ancestors. Bringing back new ideas and new thoughts from the museum helped me want to learn more about my culture.” -Taylor Adams (Crow)
“The Buffalo Bill Center of the West was a great experience for me and my class to visit in Cody Wy. We had a great time and we had also learned a lot of new things on the trip. We went of a scavenger hunt and had to count how many teepee poles were in the teepee, and I learned that there was twenty-two. Then, Hunter Old Elk showed us more of the museum. She took us to the St. Labre exhibit and helped us set our own exhibit. That was my favorite part of the trip and getting closer to my class.” -Skyler Bouyer (Crow/ Cheyenne)
“One thing I really liked at the museum was getting to see the birds and the large eagles. It was fun to be able to make our own showcase in the museum that everyone can see. I really enjoyed getting to see all the beadwork downstairs [vaults] and walking around the museum to see all those cool items. Thank you for letting me be able to go to the museum.” –Joaney Champ (Crow)
“What I liked most about the time being at the Buffalo Bill Center of the West was getting to see the vaults. Getting to see multiple objects to choose from that they get to display was cool. I enjoyed getting to learn the history behind objects in person and learning about them in person is so much better than getting it from books. Thanks for the experience in exploring how much of the museum works.” -Lanida Blackwolf (Cheyenne/Navajo)
“My favorite parts of the trip were when the activities were hands-on like when we made the container for the glass beaker and the book stand with museum services. I liked them because they made me feel like I was working for the museum. I also enjoyed the tour of the raptors den [mew] and being told what the bird’s day to day type things are like what they eat and the shows that they do.” -Vince Brady (Cheyenne)
The Plains Indian Museum staff were deeply impressed by the students’ interpretations of moccasins, dolls, cradleboards, and natal amulets. Their other choices can be viewed via virtual exhibit here.
We’d like to thank the students for sharing their thoughts, and extend our appreciation to the St. Labre School for supporting the students’ time and travel for the museum studies and beadwork class field trip. Their exhibition case can be viewed through Fall 2019 in the entrance of the Plains Indian Museum.