For as long as I can remember, I have been fascinated by indigenous history. I loved going to Plimoth Patuxet and talking with the indigenous educators at the Wampanoag homesite, and every year in elementary school I would look forward to November because I knew that we would talk about the First Thanksgiving and subsequently briefly mention indigenous people - anytime where I could learn more about this facet of history was one that I cherished. Although I had this intense fascination with indigenous history, there were not many options for me to explore this passion of mine. So, when I started my internship with the Norwell Historical Society this summer, I knew that I wanted to bring this facet of history closer to the forefront of the Norwell Public School system’s curriculum.
After graduating from Norwell High School in 2021, I went to pursue my degree in Maine at Bates College. At Bates, I am a double major in History and English with a minor in French. My coursework and amazing professors at Bates rekindled my passion for indigenous history – a passion that never fully disappeared but was simply left to the wayside because of a lack of resources available to me. Coming back home to Norwell this summer, I knew that I wanted to delve deeper into the indigenous history of our area and provide resources and knowledge to other students, teachers, or simply those interested in learning more.
Originally, I designed this website to be a space where students could go to find a few books or teachers could find essay prompts regarding local indigenous history, but as I continued my research and uncovered more about this region’s indigenous history, I knew that the resources that I found could be impactful not only in the classroom, but also as a new way to study history.
I created this website as a way for anyone who is interested in local indigenous history to have a place where they can come to find materials and knowledge to uncover for themselves this facet of history that has been hidden for so long. Because not only is our region’s indigenous history one that is extremely interesting and meaningful, but whether you are of indigenous descent or not, simply by living in Norwell, the indigenous history of our area becomes your history.
I compiled these resources through my own research, help from local curators, as well as working with head indigenous educator Tim Turner at Plimoth Patuxet, and the lovely people from the Norwell Historical Society. Through all of the blocks in the road, and difficulties that I encountered during this process, I have loved every second of working on this research project and I am so excited to share these amazing resources with anyone else who may be interested!
I began my research this summer with the hopes of uncovering some fascinating story or indigenous ancestral line that existed in Norwell’s history. While I did not accomplish this original goal, I believe that I am attempting to accomplish something much greater – to inform and expose Norwell Public School students to this facet of history, their history, and perhaps in the process of doing so, inspire people to explore this under-studied part of our history and discover more about this previously-overlooked group of people.