An insightful and informative look into the Waccamaw Siouan's quest for identity and survival. Waccamaw Legacy: Contemporary Indians Fight for Survival sheds light on North Carolina Indians by tracing the story of the now state-recognized Waccamaw Siouan tribe from its beginnings in the Southeastern United States, through their first contacts with Europeans, and into the 21st century, detailing the struggles these Indians have endured over time. We see how the Waccamaw took hold of popular theories about Indian tribes like the Croatan of the Lost Colony and the Cherokee as they struggled to preserve their heritage and to establish their identity. Patricia Lerch was hired by the Waccamaw in 1981 to perform the research needed to file for recognition under the Bureau of Indian Affairs Federal Acknowledgement Program of 1978. The Waccamaw began to organize powwows in 1970 to represent publicly their Indian heritage and survival and to spread awareness of their fight for cultural preservation and independence. Lerch found herself understanding that the powwows, in addition to affirming identity, revealed important truths about the history of the Waccamaw and the ways they communicate and coexist. Waccamaw Legacy outlines Lerch's experience as she played a vital role in the Waccamaw Siouan's continuing fight for recognition and acceptance in contemporary society and culture.
Publisher: The University of Alabama Press
Number of pages: 184
Weight: 445 g
Dimensions: 235 x 156 x 19 mm
"Patricia Lerch brings well-deserved attention to those native Americans that have been largely ignored by most anthropologists and other researchers. These people deserve to be recognized and appreciated for their determination to maintain their cultural heritage. Her insight and sensitivity on this subject are exceptional."--Anne Rogers, Western Carolina University
"The University of Alabama Press is on the vanguard of research and writing about modern, contemporary southeastern Native America with the press's Contemporary American Indian Studies series. . . . The press's latest installment in this series, Patricia Barker Lerch's Waccamaw Legacy, promises to leave a legacy of its own." American Indian Culture and Research Journal