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Wampanoag Tribal Leader Testifies in D.C. About Language Project
September 4, 2018
https://www.capecod.com/newscenter/wamp … e-project/
WASHINGTON D.C. – The United States Senate Committee on Indian Affairs hosted a hearing late last month on “Examining Efforts to Maintain and Revitalize Native Language for Future Generations."
The discussion focused not only on the importance of restoring use of Native American speech but also highlighted ways to make the goal a reality.
Locally, the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe has been making concerted efforts to restore their native Wampanaak language.
Wampanoag Tribal Vice-Chair Jesse “Little Doe" Baird was among the speakers to address the Committee.
“We were the first Indian nation to adopt an alphabetic writing system and 1632 never the less pressure from non-Indian settlement about aboriginal lands eventually rob us of our ability to speak our own language," she explained.
“Seven generations later we’ve used these written to left by our ancestors to heal this wound."
The tribe’s Wampanaak Language Reclamation Project was among the recipients of funding through the Esther Martinez Native American Languages Preservation Act in order to further their education efforts.