Leaves, Roots, Bark, and Fruit: Ethnobotany and the Poarch Band of Creek Indians
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The University of South Alabama Marx Library was pleased to announce the opening of a new exhibit: Leaves, Roots, Bark, and Fruit: Ethnobotany and the Poarch Band of Creek Indians. It was on display on the third floor of the Library from October 1 – December 11, 2014. This unique exhibit highlights the relationship between plants and the Poarch Band of Creek Indians. When the ancestors of the Poarch Creeks migrated from the Montgomery/Wetumpka area into southwest Alabama in the late 1790s, they brought with them many generations of traditional plant utilization, some of which remains in use today. This exhibit was an extension of the ongoing ethnobotantical research (study of the relationship between plants and a particular culture) conducted by Poarch Creek Tribal Historic Preservation Officer (THPO) Robert G. Thrower.
Dr. Philip Carr, Professor of Anthropology and Chief Calvin McGhee Endowed Professor of Native American Studies at USA, and THPO Robert Thrower conceived this exhibit as a multidisciplinary introduction to the traditional roles that plants have played among the Poarch Creeks and their ancestors. The display featured some of the plants of traditional use for utility, culinary, medicinal, and ceremonial purposes. Also showcased were portraits and biographies of tribal members, past and present, who maintained and passed on their extensive knowledge of traditional Creek plant usage. A variety of traditional utilitarian and art pieces utilizing ethnobotantical resources were featured throughout the exhibition.
It is the hope of the Poarch Creeks Honorable Tribal Chair Stephanie Bryan, the Poarch Creek Tribal Council, Dr. Philip Carr, and THPO Robert Thrower that this exhibit would spark a renewed interest in the research and continuation of this valuable traditional knowledge. Through the newly formed Native American Studies Program at USA, and in partnership with the Poarch Band of Creek Indians, this exhibit was one example of the educational opportunities that would be offered in the future.
Found Object, 3D Design, Nature
Arts and Humanities
Jagworks, "Leaves, Roots, Bark, and Fruit: Ethnobotany and the Poarch Band of Creek Indians" (2014). Libraries Galleries and Outreach History. 16.