Native American Pow Wows Celebrate Patriotism, Unity

Native American Pow Wows Celebrate Patriotism, Unity

Voice of America News Interviews Powwow-Power.Com’s owner, Becky Olvera Schultz

This is an excellent article by Cecily Hilleary. I was honored to be included as one of the people she interviewed for the article. I was also pleased to have one of my powwow photos included in the story.

It’s pow wow season in the United States, a time when Native American nations, bands and tribes gather to connect, celebrate tribal histories and cultures, and express their patriotism. On any given weekend this summer, a pow wow is taking place somewhere in the country, an expression of unity within and between Native communities.

“Pow wow” derives from an old Algonquian word that referred to a gathering of spiritual healers celebrating successful hunts, battles or trade. In 1883, the government banned “old heathenish dances,” worried they would “stimulate the warlike passions” of tribal youth.

Tribes found ways around the ban, which was lifted in the 1930s. The Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes of northwest Montana held pow wows as Fourth of July celebrations. Other tribes held pow wows as cultural displays for non-Natives.

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Categories: Culture, Powwows

About Author

Becky Olvera Schultz

Becky Olvera Schultz is an artist and photographer whose background includes journalism, advertising and marketing. She has been in involved with the powwow circuit for several years, participating as a vendor and as a member of powwow planning committees. For more information on Becky, visit her art site at