Tribe’s plans for museum get a boost

Published 8:41 am Wednesday, October 7, 2009

COURTLAND — For conducting a Native American presentation over several months, the Cheroenhaka (Nottoway) Indian Tribe has received a donation of more than $8,000, which the tribe will use toward building a cultural center and museum on land it purchased in March.

The tribe’s chief, Walt “Red Hawk” Brown, and several other tribal members joined representatives of the Nansemond Chapter of the Archeological Society of Virginia to perform a series of presentations at the Historical Villages at Cape Henry in Virginia Beach. The series ran from May to September.

Brown traveled to the Virginia Beach attraction every Thursday to man the Iroquoian Long House exhibit, where he shared with visitors the history of his tribe and the Iroquoian language. ASV members were also at the site every third Thursday to display artifacts from the tribe and other prehistoric Indian artifacts. The group was also on-hand to assist with artifact identification.

First Landing Foundation, which runs the Historic Villages, thanked the tribe for their efforts and donated four checks totalling $8,400.

“We are very happy and pleased with our partnership with the First Landing Foundation,” Brown said Monday, adding that the donated funds would be used toward a tribal cultural center and museum to be built on 100 acres the tribe purchased from Sustainable Forest LLC on March 20.

The tribe also plans to develop powwow grounds, a worship center, and an interactive Native American village called Cattashowrock Town on its property, located on Old Bridge Road, just south of Courtland.

Cattashowrock Town would be constructed as a replica of a 1580s Iroquoian village, complete with a palisade and Iroquois traditional “long houses,” similar to the ones discovered in the 1960s in Southampton County near General Thomas Highway.

On Nov. 20 and 21, the tribe will sponsor its Intertribal Corn Harvest Fall Festival Powwow & School Day at the Historic Villages.