The 2013 Two Row Wampum Renewal Campaign

Greta Wagle earned her M.A. in Dutch and English Linguistics and Literature from Catholic University of Leuven. A researcher, Greta Wagle is a founding member and project director of the Onrust Project, an undertaking to reconstruct the yacht Onrust, built in America in the 17th century. The project was involved in the 2013 Two Row Wampum Renewal Campaign.

The year 2013 marked the 400th anniversary of the Two Row Wampum Treaty. In 1613, the five nations of Iroquois Indians of the Northeast signed a treaty with Dutch representatives from the European government. The treaty was sealed with wampum, beads of shells crafted by Native Americans that doubled as money and a form of writing.

Set over two weeks, the 2013 Two Row Wampum Renewal Campaign was carried out to educate the public on what the signing of the treaty meant when it was sealed and what it means today. Participants gained a deeper understanding of how wampum belts were used to record events such as treaties, the historical significance and importance of protecting a people’s sovereignty, and to celebrate the culture of contemporary Native Americans.

Additionally, forerunners of the campaign created awareness of the necessity of environmental cleanup during the two-week-long occasion.

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