September 21, 2023
7:00 PM EST
8:30 PM EST

Cost: Free

Event Description:

Join us on Thursday, September 21st, for our 3rd program in WWBA 2023 Series: Legacy of Long Island’s First Peoples, Long Island Native Americans’ Boarding School Experience featuring Marguerite Smith, Esq. 

See below for ZOOM link and information.

The Indian Boarding School Movement began with the missionary and charity Indian schools in the New England region in the early 1700s.  Montaukett youth like David, George, and Jacob Fowler experienced being educated by missionaries during the beginning years of the Great Awakening.  By 1819, the US Government got involved and operated 408 Native American Boarding Schools.

These schools were ostensibly created to help “educate” Indian children; however, according to a government report released in 1969, it was a deceptive attempt, “to separate a child from his reservation and family, strip him of his tribal lore and mores, force the complete abandonment of his native language, and prepare him for never again returning to his people.” Moreover, the abuse of these children was so egregious, it is estimated that as many as 40,000 children died in these institutions.   Despite the enormity of these crimes, most people know very little about either the missionary, charity, or the US Government operated schools.

Marguerite Smith, Esq., a respected attorney and advocate for health and justice, will introduce you to the experiences of Shinnecock Nation members, who attended boarding schools in the 1900s. Smith has been a member of the Board of Directors of the First Nations Development Institute, since the mid-1980s and serves as one of its representatives on the Board of First Nations Oweesta Corporation. She is an enrolled Shinnecock, and she maintains her residence on the Shinnecock Indian Reservation.  Smith has been instrumental in advancing Native rights, economic development, cultural preservation and health promotions of her Native Nation and others.

This is a FREE event.

Marguerite Smith is an enrolled citizen of the Shinnecock Indian Nation, involved in many community activities including serving on  “Steering Committee” of Shinnecock Council of Elders”. She was born in Southampton and, after living in NYC, CT, and elsewhere on Long Island, is  residing again on Shinnecock Territory (aka Shinnecock Indian Reservation).  She is a practicing attorney who has long been involved in advocacy on issues concerning Native people, women, children, people of color, for the environment and  involving workplace issues, with individual, corporate, tribal & other governmental clients. She is also Vice-President of the Board of Directors of  First Nations Development Institute, which supports Native projects across United States and promotes  philanthropic efforts of  others.

Zoom Information:

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Meeting ID:
858 6637 3768

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Meeting ID:
858 6637 3768

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This event is made possible with funds from the Statewide Community Regrant Program, a regrant program of the New York State Council on the Arts with support of the Office of the Governor and the New York State Legislature and administered by The Huntington Arts Council, Inc.