When Jean Nicolet
first stepped foot in
Wisconsin and concocted the
woefully unimaginative name, "Green Bay" (for
the color of the bay, you see), he assumed he was in
China. The year was 1634 and indigenous people
had occupied this land for thousands of years. An indigenous history is deeper ingrained in our land's culture than saying "ope" when you bump into
someone at the Piggly Wiggly or driving an
extra five miles past multiple gas
stations because "there's a Kwik Trip up here on the corner." It's important to remember this.
Popular history is often told from the perspective of the conquerors. Partner this with the widespread racial animosity that's back en vogue this decade and we've effectively wiped out the minimal progress that had been made on mandated indigenous education in schools.
The above excerpt from Robert Bieder's Native American Communities in Wisconsin, 1600–1960: A Study of Tradition and Change tells a minuscule piece of the story of the struggles of those who called the land that is Wisconsin home before anyone. But as an American state, Wisconsin is far from alone in this regard. In fact,