The Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian is featuring an engrossing online exhibit called The Americans. It opens with two statements and a question:
“Indians are less than 1% of the population. Yet images and names of Indians are everywhere. How is it that Indians can be so present and so absent in American life?”
It examines images we see everyday that include Indian totems, images and names. The exhibit allows us to investigate the images that adorn tobacco, candy, sorghum, guns, sports teams, military insignia, and town seals.
The Americans also features videos by the Smithsonian on The Invention of Thanksgiving, Queen of America (Pocahontas), The Removal Act, and The Indians Win (the Battle of Little Big Horn). If you can’t get to the Native American Museum in Washington, the online exhibit is a great way to delve into the way the mainstream American narrative has intertwined with Native American past and present with a critical eye.