One question that we get from time to time is “Are you really Indian?” Robert is a direct lineal descendent of Black Elk (Chippewa). He is of Chippewa/Ojibwe and Apache heritage. His family traces back over eleven generations to the Swan Creek/Black River Bands of Michigan, known today as the Saginaw Chippewa Indian Tribe. The Chippewa/Ojibwe refer to themselves as “Anishinaabe” (The People).
Terri Lynn is French, Irish, English, Scottish and Welsh. She was recently told that her maternal grandmother said she was an American Indian, but because she was adopted from the orphan train and raised by another family, we know little about her. Terri wears the traditional buckskin dress during ceremonies and teachings, to honor her husband’s family. The dress belonged to her mother-in-law, Akwagiishnuquay (End Of Day Woman). When they married, she was given the command, “You are now one of us, go teach with your husband. This is the traditional way of our People.”
White Shield, An Arikara Chief said it better than we ever could:
The color of the skin makes no difference. What is good and just for one is good and just for the other, and the Great Spirit made all men brothers. I have a red skin, but my grandfather was a white man. What does it matter? It is not the color of the skin that makes me good or bad.