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Photo courtesy of the Regional Learning Project, The University of Montana, 2005
W. Otis Halfmoon

September 2011—W. Otis Halfmoon, a Nez Perce elder and National Park Service interpreter, will present

“‘Are They Ready to Hear the Truth’?: The National Park Service, American Indian History, and the Public”

Tuesday, September 20 at 4:30 p.m.

John P. Raynor, S.J., Library Conference Center

Mr. Halfmoon has had a wide-ranging career as a public historian within the National Park Service (NPS). For the past two decades, Halfmoon has worked as an interpreter, park historian, unit administrator, and tribal liaison officer with indigenous peoples across the West. As a tribal liaison based in Sante Fe, New Mexico, Halfmoon mediates between western tribal leaders and the United States government. Halfmoon, who is a Nez Perce elder, documents and preserves his nation's history and culture through oral histories and he is an expert on the so-called Nez Perce War of 1877 and Chief Joseph.

The event is the first of several public programs planned for the 2011-2012 academic year by Marquette University’s interdisciplinary Public History program. “The interpretation and presentation of American Indian history is an important challenge for museums and historical agencies,” said Public History program coordinator, professor John Krugler. “Despite the best intentions of museum professionals, whenever a dominant culture interprets the past there is a high probability for significant conflict and disagreement.” Please join us for this presentation of American history as seen from the perspective of an American Indian scholar. Mr. Halfmoon’s presentation is sponsored by the Helen Way Klingler College of Arts and Science, the Department of History, and Raynor Memorial Libraries.

The event is free and open to the general public, but guests without Marquette University identification are asked to pre-register with Special Collections (telephone 414-288-7256) by noon on Sept. 19th. Questions about the lecture may be addressed to Special Collections by phone (414)-288-7256.

Professor Krugler and the Public History program have partnered with Marquette University Libraries to host the traveling exhibit “Lewis & Clark and the Indian Country” in Raynor Library from March 14 to April 27, 2012. The Newberry Library, Chicago, and the American Library Association organized the touring exhibit with support from the National Endowment for the Humanities, the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, the Sara Lee Foundation, Ruth C. Ruggles and the National Park Service.

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