Native American storyteller aims to clear up misconceptions about Thanksgiving
ELMIRA, N.Y. (WENY) -- Steele Memorial Library held an interactive presentation as a way for members of the community to get involved in the history of Thanksgiving. Perry Ground, from the Onondaga Turtle Clan, says there are several misconceptions about the holiday, and that clearing them up actually helps build better relationships within the community.
"So November is Native American History Month all across the United States. During November, its a great time to learn more about the history and culture of the Native People who have always lived here, lived here a long time ago and live here now, so that we better understand each other, and can build better relationships," said Perry.
Part of the presentation was a quiz, where attendees marked down what they thought was true about Thanksgiving. Then, Ground cleared up the misconceptions. One surprising fact was that the feast in 1621 was not the first festival of its kind in North America. Ground then explained why presentations like these are important.
"It shows the interest that people have in Native American history and culture. Many people say to me, I've never learned this in school, why haven't I learned this before, I've never heard this before. It is an opportunity for people, here at Steele Memorial Library, and all the places I give my talks in," added Perry.
One attendee I spoke to explained why he decided to attend the presentation tonight.
"I think its great to learn about different cultures, and to learn a perspective from different angles. I think its important for the culture enriching of the community," said Paul DiPietro, an Elmira resident.
Ground hosts events all over the country, and says he encourages everyone to get involved with Native American history.