Can the Barkhamsted Lighthouse People get recognition?


FYI: The Barkhamsted Lighthouse People descend from many tribes but that doesn’t mean we can ‘join a tribe’ what people don’t understand – by the time of our “Lighthouse People” it was reservation down, reservation down thing – many tribes had been wiped out to disease & Colonization – our people weren’t on “Rolls” we were the 1st to be “Colonized WE ARE THE Descendants of the 1st Praying Indians” (Brotherton/Brothertown is a totally different group then us – they followed the reservations – we moved to CT & became Lighthouse People) We WERE the Indians of Roger Williams, John Eliot, Joseph Fish, along with the Sampson Occum story – we ‘became white’ when James Chagum (Narragansett/Long Island) married a ‘white women’ Mary/Molly – who are MY 7th G Grandparent’s fled to Barkhamsted CT and created a small community of family/children – We were not in a ‘recognized tribes’ we were noted as being Narragansett but at that time – it was the majority name of many tribes within that area – what we were was a small family of a mix of Native American lineages (Pequot, Mohegan, Narragansett+) white (Mary), Black (Jacklin) – we didn’t have “tribal gatherings after the 18oo’s” many don’t understand or they want me to ‘Join a tribe’ but so many tribes are fighting for their recognition – many are struggling to keep their lands, we had small family gathering because many of our lines were broken apart or moved away – many of the children in my lines dealt with being sent to girls/boys schools or adopted out – many died on poor farms – We were the 1st children to be ‘indentured’ in this country in the 1600’s & now many of the tribal women of today are being beat, abused and missing……. People believe there are ‘benefits’ to be had but all these tribes are struggling – many of the children don’t care to carry on the ‘tradition’ but rather hang out and do drugs and act like thugs – I see the elders struggling to ‘keep the history alive’- I see the traditions slipping away – My research is not abt ‘getting our tribal recognition’ it is abt finding out the ‘true history’ of our ancestors to tell the true story of them – so much has been hidden/covered up – I want to tell their side of the story – I will eventually make a ‘series’ – start at one point and work my way back in history – it truly is a American Story and one of so much history -It needs to be told –  I know everyone believes we ‘should have rights’ but we haven’t fought the battle of these tribes – they have – we can’t expect to waltz right in and scream HEY that’s mine – I am but a simple white women genealogist who started to do her lines 20+ yrs and ended up discovering a beautiful story – a Native American Story – a True American Story that needs to be told – that is what I am doing – I am NOT out for “recognition” there truly isn’t any we could claim NO rights to any tribe – MANY of the tribes are not recognized and even more are extinct – we can’t meet any criteria on any tribal rolls  – Our story is being recognized with the work I am doing – I will continue to do my research til I uncover the last stone – I need everyone to understand I have to work with ALL the tribes to get to the root of the Native American Ancestors – to join one would mean loyalty to just that one – I am all tribes so therefore I need to be able to work with all of them – I have to stand neutral – the Native Culture and it’s history is being lost in our elders daily that leave this world – if we don’t preserve it now it will be lost~ Know one thing in your heart – Native American Blood runs thur our veins and be proud to know no one or nothing can say otherwise~

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Tonia Allen Gould

Children's and Young Adult Author and Founder of the FInding Corte Magore Project

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