Traveling Wampanoag exhibit adds new chapter


A traveling exhibition about the Wampanoag people that the Pilgrims encountered when they arrived in 1620 has added a new chapter, now on display at the Pilgrim Hall Museum in Plymouth.

The new installment, “Powwow,” adds to three other chapters previously created for the multimedia exhibit, “Our Story: 400 Years of Wampanoag History.”

Plymouth 400, the group planning the 400th anniversary events in 2020 commemorating the Mayflower voyage and the founding of Plymouth Colony, has been displaying the evolving exhibit at various locations since initiating it in 2014.

Powwow, which debuted at the Mashantucket Pequot Museum and Research Center in Connecticut last November, explores Native American traditions about gathering and giving thanks with a mix of interactive video, contemporary native art, and photos collected from the annual powwows held by the Mashpee and Aquinnah Wampanoag tribes.

The overall “Our Story” exhibit is on display at the Pilgrim Hall Museum through March 29, after which it will move to the New England Historic Genealogical Society in Boston.

The traveling exhibit was created to highlight key legacies of America’s earliest beginnings from the Wampanoag perspective; a voice organizers say has been largely silenced in the colonial narrative.

Plymouth 400 commissioned SmokeSygnals, a Native design firm, to create the various installments of “Our Story” to ensure the exhibit is thoroughly representative of the history of New England’s indigenous peoples.