November - December 2021 Holiday Issue of ViewOn Magazine

Page 91

Stewart Indian School walking tour map accessed from on Sept 15, 2021.

The first Bureau of Indian Affairs boarding school for Native Americans was opened in 1879 with the goal of “kill the Indian, save the man” (carlisleindianschoolproject. com). Students were renamed and stripped of tribal identities when they entered the school. In Conestoga, Pennsylvania, the Carlisle Indian School operated for 39 years, appropriated children from over 140 tribes, and was the model for other boarding schools across the country. Children were buried there, too. Forensic anthropologist Elizabeth DiGangi of SUNY Binghamton University has worked towards identifying children. The cemetery held 189 child graves. So far, six children have been returned to their tribal families. Unfortunately, Native American families were compelled to survive boarding schools in Nevada, too. Up until 30 years ago, there was a boarding school in this area. Stewart Indian School ( closed in 1981. For perspective, a 1981 graduate would be 57 or 58 years old today. Approximately 170 unmarked graves have been located at the Stewart Indian School. Surviving students relate stories of not being able to talk in their language or practice their religious beliefs and having their clothes taken from them. This school affected Nevadan families for over 90 years. Through interpretation and revitalization of the Stewart campus, the mission of the Stewart Indian School Legacy in Carson City is to educate visitors about the

Nov/Dec 2021 | VIEW ON MAGAZINE |


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