Developing Indigenous History Programming at Antelope Island State Park
I am currently an Environmental Humanities master’s student studying Indigenous history at Antelope Island with support from my advisor, Dr. Danielle Endres. Prior to starting this program, I worked in outdoor education in the mountains of Colorado and taught English in France. My research interests include public lands issues, collaboration with Indigenous communities, and decolonizing methodologies.
This project seeks to assert the robust Indigenous historical context at Antelope Island State Park, employing an Indigenous research framework and decolonizing methodologies. My project includes an analysis of and reflection on the process of creating an interpretive video at Antelope Island in collaboration with the Northwestern Band of Shoshone Nation. This formulation aligns with Indigenous research methods, which center Indigenous epistemologies and cultural values. Other aspects of research important to this approach include relationality, an emphasis on story, and inclusion of Indigenous knowledges and cultures on their own terms. In illuminating and analyzing my research process, I can share insights about putting Indigenous research methods into practice. The video component of the project will share Indigenous history and culture with the public on the one hand. More generally, my work is a case study for how to employ Indigenous research methods in the context of public lands interpretation.
My project involves a collaboration with the Northwestern Band of Shoshone Nation to introduce an Indigenous perspective to visitors at Antelope Island State Park. The partnership resulted in the creation of a video including conversations with Northwestern Band of Shoshone elders that will be shown in the visitor center on Antelope Island. I am also working to establish a long-term partnership between the Northwestern Band of Shoshone Nation and the park in order for them to collaborate on events, exhibits and other interpretive opportunities. In my project, I am using Indigenous research methods, which emphasize relationship-building and accountability. I am also seeking to support Indigenous sovereignty by acknowledging Indigenous nationhood, governmental protocols, and treaty rights.