Dr. Traci Morris is a member of the Chickasaw Nation and the founder and director of Homahota Consulting agency, based in Phoenix Arizona. Dr. Morris was kind enough give ITP a rare tour of her private collection of colorful, unique and very often offensive artifacts relating to indigenous identities, both real and imagined.
Indigenous Tours Project gets a tour from Gabe Pastores, a member of the Quechan Tribe, and a friend of mine who lives up the street from me in Phoenix. He offered to give ITP a tour of a place called Sunset Point, on the Fort Yuma Quechan Reservation, AZ/CA. This location was important for Gabe, as he recall the memories of childhood and his family get togethers. Thanks Gabe for a great tour and an awesome road trip!
Billy Allen is an Akimel O'odham community member, retired high school social studies teacher and coach. He also helped developed a curriculum to teach O'odham history at Casa Grande Union High School and continues his community involvement by writing a volunteer monthly history column in the Gila River Indian News (GRIN). He studies Southwest Arizona history and indigenous history. For his articles, he interviews people in the Community and gets a peoples' history too. Indigenous Tours Project joins Billy Allen at the Huhugam Heritage Center in Gila River for a few notable stories of his own about the areas he grew up in. Thanks Billy for sharing!
“The Breeze”, as he is more commonly known among his peers gave Indigenous Tours Project a tour along 16th Street between Oak St. and Thomas in central Phoenix, Arizona. It’s here where he’s been active creating murals with a community of artists for long time. His family and cultural roots exist in the Phoenix area as well as the Salt River area (Tour #2 is still in the works), but the vitality and commitment he has nurtured through years of throwing up paint on the walls with his friends is best represented in this area. It’s a great example of how indigenous artists are integrating themselves into a larger community. Thanks Breeze for taking some time to show us your work!
Yolanda kicks off the first tour with a rambling excursion through parts of District 6 – Komatke, on the Gila Indian Reservation, Arizona. As intended with the tours I really want to let the participant (tour guide) to take the lead and choose the direction of the tour, and Yolanda was more than happy to show me around as she borrowed my car to cruise me around some areas near her home. We didn’t have to go far to find a number of areas that brought back a lot of memories for her. While some of Yolanda’s cultural ties and traditions are connected to the Colorado River region, she is still at home in Komatke living her life and sharing her lifeway’s with people who are interested to know more. Thanks Yolanda!