Boarding School Stories

Boarding School Stories

In 2012, a film that Randy Vasquez directed and I produced, called The Thick Dark Fog, was broadcast nationwide on PBS. The film tells the story of Lakota elder Walter Littlemoon’s journey of healing from his American Indian boarding school experiences. During the production of the film, we spoke to many Native elders who had gone to boarding school.

We came to believe that all school survivors and alumni who want to tell their stories should have an opportunity to do so, not only for their own healing, but also for the benefit of future generations. Learning about the Native American boarding school experience from those who lived it will be one of the most important ways to understand this complex and sometimes devastating history. Out of this vision, the Boarding School Stories visual history archive was born.

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Should tribes like the Shoshone and Arapaho attempt to bring back beautiful ancestral objects—drums, pipes, eagle wing fans, medicine bags, weapons, and ceremonial attire that ar