Hi, everybody. My name is Roland Montgomery and I am a History and Religious Studies undergraduate from the University of Nebraska at Omaha. Earlier in 2015, I was awarded the Fund for Undergraduate Scholarly Experiences from the Office of Research and Creative Activity on my topic “Wampum, Colonial Contact, and Preservation.” My research will focus on the Haudenosaunee people: their oral histories, the use of wampum as both cultural and political tools, contact and interaction with colonial powers, modern political and legal struggles, and the preservation of their culture. You can read my proposal, as well as its appended documents needed for approval, here.
To more fully research, and experience, this vast tradition I have chosen to use this opportunity to take approximately two weeks and relocate to the Central New York area around Syracuse. For those two weeks, I will be interviewing Native and non-Native scholars on the subject, recording interviews, and taking photographs or videos when possible. While also in the area, I will visit or tour historically significant sites and museums when possible. I have chosen to begin this blog as a way to capture my experiences and digitize my scholarly efforts. By collecting the oral histories, interviews, videos, and pictures of my trip, I will be able to make my research more practically available to the academic world for both knowledgeable and uninitiated students of the Six Nations. Following those two weeks, I will take what I have learned in the Syracuse area, critically examine secondary sources, and compile the information into a full-length article; the first academic paper I will attempt to publish.
While all of us may not share the Longhouse tradition or worldview, there are several issues of mutual concern between the two ships.I thank all you who take the time visit or follow my journey into my first scholarly experience. I hope you learn something new, enjoy the content, be inspired, and leave happy.
All the best,