Medicine Month

When I lived in Georgia a fellow academic cautioned me about planning anything on Wednesday evening. Some folks go to church, he said.

And when I lived in Teheran, we went to the American School Monday through Thursday, and on Saturday. We observed the Muslim holy day on Friday and the Christian holiday on Sunday.

So when I was invited to a meeting in Washington DC in June, I had to decline. One of my relatives in Rapid City had already invited me for a visit, and I’ve been looking forward to catching up and learning more about that side of my family.

My great-great-great grandmother was the daughter Henri Chatillon (Francis Parkman’s guide on the Oregon Trail) and Bear Robe, daughter of Bull Bear, a Lakota leader described in great detail in the Oregon Trail book.

Their daughter married an Osage man, and my ancestors settled with the Osage, rather than the Lakota, so I know little about my relatives from South Dakota.

June is a busy month: my uncle in South Dakota said many celebrations are held during that time, and, for the Osage, June marks homecoming with family members who return from all across the country for the annual dances.

So I wondered: is June an important month across Indian Country? My uncle said summer solstice marks an important time.

My pal John Sanchez (Apache) said June is medicine time.

Good to know. I plan to be more aware. June is an important time.

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About Cynthia Coleman Emery

Professor and researcher at Portland State University who studies science communication, particularly issues that impact American Indians. She is enrolled with the Osage tribe.
This entry was posted in authenticity, Francis Parkman, Henri Chatillion, Indian. Bookmark the permalink.

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