Skowhegan Museum’s next Wabanaki Voices lecture is scheduled for July 21

Dwayne Tomah Photo submitted

Dwayne Tomah, director and curator of the Sipayik Museum, is the next speaker in the Skowhegan History House Museum’s Wabanaki Voices lecture series.

The conference is scheduled for 7 p.m. on Thursday July 21 at Tewksbury Hall on Weston Avenue in Skowhegan.

Tomah will lead a discussion after showing the hour-long film, “The Doctrine of Discovery – Unmasking Domination.” The Doctrine of Discovery refers to a principle of public international law that when a nation discovers territory, it directly acquires rights to that territory. The doctrine served as the basis for later laws stripping Indigenous peoples of their lands, according to a press release from the museum.

Tomah has been involved in repatriation and land return issues and will share historical truth regarding the Doctrine of Discovery from an Indigenous perspective. He is a language keeper and teacher of the Passamaquoddy language and culture. He is the youngest speaker of the Passamaquoddy tribe and has served on the tribal council.

His life was dedicated to working on the preservation of language and culture. Tomah edited the Passamaquoddy dictionary and helped create the Apple ~Passamaquoddy Language app.

He shares Aboriginal legends through song and dance. He also worked with “Animal Planet” on a segment called Winged Creatures, highlighting the history of the Thunderbird.

Tomah is working with the Library of Congress on the translation of the Passamaquoddy wax cylinders. These recordings are the world’s first recordings of Indigenous languages. They were recorded in 1890 by Jesse Walter Fewkes, who borrowed the device from inventor Thomas Edison.

This event is free and will also be streamed via Zoom. Masks are mandatory for in-person attendance.

To sign up for the Zoom link, visit msad54.maineadulted.org. For more information, call 207-474-6632.

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