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Simon Pokagon’s Birch Bark Stories

June 11, 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm


Kalamazoo Institute of Arts
314 S Park St
Kalamazoo, MI 49007 United States
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Originally published in 1893 and 1901, Simon Pokagon’s birch bark stories were printed on thinly peeled and elegantly bound birch bark. In Dr. Blaire Morseau’s 2023 book, As Sacred to Us: Simon Pokagon’s Birch Bark Stories in Their Contexts, these rare booklets are reprinted with new essays that set the stories in cultural, linguistic, historical, and even geological context. Experts in Native literary traditions, history, Algonquian languages, the Michigan landscape, and materials conservation illuminate the thousands of years of Indigenous knowledge that Pokagon elevated in his stories.

Blaire Morseau is a citizen of the Pokagon Band of Potawatomi Indians, a beadwork artist, and an Assistant Professor in the Department of Religious Studies as well as affiliate faculty in American Indian and Indigenous Studies at Michigan State University. Before joining MSU, she was Assistant Professor of Anthropology at the University of Massachusetts, Boston, where she served as Interim Director of Native American and Indigenous Studies. Dr. Morseau also worked as her tribe’s first Archivist, where she launched the online collections website, Wiwkwébthëgen.

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