SunWatch

The American Indian Advisory Committee

The American Indian Advisory Committee to the Dayton Society of Natural History (DSNH) came into being through the interest of several dedicated individuals of Native American heritage.  In 1972, Solomon Brokeshoulder and other Native Americans of the Four Points Intertribal Association requested a meeting with the Dayton Museum of Natural History to communicate their concerns regarding the archaeological

excavations at what is now SunWatch Indian Village/Archaeological Park.  Members of the Four Points Intertribal Association were originally opposed to the excavation at that site, but subsequent communication between the two groups revealed a common desire to preserve and share Native American culture.

 

By 1989, the Indian Advisory Committee to the DSNH was formalized.  The original members of the Indian Advisory Committee were Solomon Brokeshoulder, John Temple, Irene Temple, Tsali Ticonderoga, and Cynthia Kassee.  This self-regulating and self-perpetuating body of dedicated individuals envisioned creating better communication and understanding between the Anthropology Department of the DSNH and the Native American community of southwestern Ohio.  The majority of their early work involved questions relating to SunWatch, but over time their input has expanded to include many other topics.  Today, the American Indian Advisory Committee advises the DSNH in matters as diverse as selection of ethnographic specimens for exhibition at the Boonshoft Museum of Discovery, excavation plans at the DSNH’s current archaeological site, and preservation of sensitive cultural material as well as reconstruction of the village at SunWatch.

Today, the American Indian Advisory Committee continues to assist the DSNH in formulating strategy for increasing community awareness of the cultural heritage represented by SunWatch, raising funds for educational programs about Native American culture, and planning archaeological investigation at the current site excavated by the Anthropology Department of the DSNH.  The American Indian Advisory Committee continues to be an integral part of the relationship between the DSNH and the Native American community of southwestern Ohio.

Current members of the American Indian Advisory Committee include Lloyd Milby, Lawrence Higdon, Hank Stock III, Tsali Ticonderoga, Charlie and Karen Temple, Debbie Helsinger, Jeff Stevenson, and Frank Bingham.  Charlie Temple and Debbie Helsinger are John and Irene Temple’s children.  Lloyd Milby’s children Ada and Sam Milby are Associate Members.