Interpreting Native American History and Culture at Museums and Historic Sites features ideas and suggested best practices for the staff and board of museums that care for collections of Native material culture, and who work with Native American culture, history, and communities. This resource gives museum and history professionals benchmarks to help shape conversations and policies designed to improve relations with Native communities represented in the museum. The book includes case studies from museums that are purposefully working to incorporate Native people and perspectives into all aspects of their work. The case study authors share experiences, hoping to inspire other museum staff to reach out to tribes to develop or improve their own interpretative processes. Examples from tribal and non-tribal museums, and partnerships between tribes and museums are explored as models for creating deep and long lasting partnerships between museums and the tribal communities they represent. The case studies represent museums of different sizes, different missions, and located in different regions of the country in an effort to address the unique history of each location.
By doing so, it inspires action among museums to invite Native people to share in the interpretive process, or to take existing relationships further by sharing authority with museum staff and board.
Raney Bench has a Bachelors of Art in Native American Studies and a Master of Arts in Museum Studies. She has worked with Native communities and small museums throughout the United States for almost 20 years.
Preface Chapter 1 Knowing the History: A brief history of federal Indian policy Chapter 2 Getting Started Chapter 3 Consultation with Tribes and Advice from the Field, by Kelli Mosteller and R. Blake Norton Chapter 4 Building Partnerships and Authority Sharing Case Study: Native Voices: A permanent gallery at the Natural History Museum of Utah, by Becky Menlove Chapter 5 Taking Responsibility for Museum History and Legacy, and Promoting Change in Collections Management. Case Study: The Abbe Museum: Seeking A Collaborative Future through Decolonization, by Darren Ranco and Julia Clark Chapter 6 Establishing Tribal Partners in Education and Public Programs Case Study: Portland Art Museum: Object Stories: Connecting Collections with Communities, by Deana Dartt and Michael Murawski Chapter 7 Pulling it all Together- Native Advisory Councils and Governance Case Study: Collaborating with Cultures: The Eiteljorg Museum of American Indians and Western Art, by James H. Nottage Chapter 8 Review and Final Thoughts Appendix One: Timeline of federal-Indian policy Appendix Two: Activity to Understand Stereotypes and Bias Index About the Author