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Sunday Afternoons at the Arts Center: Donald Soctomah on Passamaquoddy place names
January 8 @ 3:00 pm - 4:00 pm UTC-5
EAC’s popular Sunday Afternoons at the Arts Center will return this winter with a lively lineup of performances and talks running weekly from January 8 to April 30 (skipping Easter Sunday), in the Center’s cozy downstairs Washington Street Gallery, amidst rotating exhibitions. The series will begin with a talk by Passamaquoddy Historical Preservation Officer Donald Soctomah, on Tribal Place Names Around Passamaquoddy Bay.
Soctomah is a Native American author, filmmaker, historian and politician. Called “the most recognized member of the Passamaquoddy tribe,” he appeared on the PBS reality show ‘Colonial House’, which premiered in 2004 and was filmed on Passamaquoddy land. He has also appeared in several films about the history and legends of his tribe, including some made for National Public Television, Maine Public Television, Canadian Broadcasting, Animal Planet and several other networks. During 8 years service as a Passamaquoddy Tribal Representative in the Maine House of Representatives, he was successful in passing legislature on the protection of Native American grave sites and archaeological sites; the requirement to teach Wabanaki history in all Maine K-12 schools; and the removal of offensive place names from geographical landmarks in Maine.
As Tribal Historic Preservation Officer, Soctomah is a frequent consultant on federal and Maine historic and educational projects, including films, CDs, and books. He has worked on a project to inventory Passamaquoddy place names in Maine, and has been deeply involved in Passamaquoddy language revitalization efforts. In addition to running the Passamaquoddy tribal museum, Soctomah contributed to the Downeast Heritage Center’s second biggest exhibit in Calais, Maine, called “People of the Dawn.”
In 2015 the Maine Humanities Council awarded Soctomah its highest honor, the Constance H. Carlson Prize, for his exemplary contributions to public humanities in Maine.
In Washington DC at the International Conference of Indigenous Archives, Libraries, and Museums, he was awarded the International 2015 Guardian of Culture and Lifeways Award.
Find more information and the rest of the Sunday series schedule here.
Eastport Arts Center is at 36 Washington Street, Eastport. The EAC abides by the State of Maine CDC COVID guidelines. Additionally, at this time, the EAC recommends that people wear masks when in our building.