Manataka Smoke Signal News - APRIL 2012


Volume XIX  Issue 05


Preserving The Past Today For Tomorrow

MAY 2012

Hello Beautiful People!  We have a great deal of pent up emotion that makes us feel we are bursting at the seams.  Do we dare release all that we know at this time?  The beautiful events that occurred at the Place of Peace over the past few months are indeed extraordinary and cry out to be shared, but we are forced to keep silent until the moment arrives.  Prophesy will be fulfilled and the sacredness of this magnificent place of the Unbroken Circle will emerge.


We hope you like the changes in the new Smoke Signal News.  For your convenience and reading pleasure, we have done away with the excessively long newsletters to be replaced with shorter, timely articles.  We are here to preserve and protect the sacred Manataka mountain.  ~editor





Listen To The Wind by Tom Haley

A magnificent collection of American Indian poems, prayers and wisdom by a new member of Manataka, Reverend Tom Haley, pastor of the Rock Creek Christian Church in Hot Springs National Park, Arkansas.  Rev. Haley is a graduate of Hendrix College and Perkins School of Theology, Southern Methodist University. He has written a number of books including God and Son, Inc (2012), The Laughing Jesus: and His Other Faces (2012); Along the Path: Meditations and Reflections on Life (2012); Haley's Comments (1991); Prayers with Wings (1985); and Anchors in the Storm (1983).  He and his wife, Amanda, have three adult children and three grandchildren. His newest book shares the beautiful depth and breadth of American Indian wisdom. Listen To The Wind is only $10.00 and proceeds from this book go to the Manataka American Indian Council. 


Order any of these books here

Send your name, address, telephone. We will send an invoice.


Recommended Books:

Reservation "Capitalism" - Economic Development in Indian Country

By Professor Robert J. Miller




By Manataka Elder, The Rev. Dr. Fred D. Wilcoxson PhD



“Each of us is put here in this time and this place to personally decide the future of humankind. Did you think the Creator would create unnecessary people in a time of such terrible danger?  Know that you yourself are essential to this World.” — Chief Arvol Looking Horse of the Lakota, Dakota and Nakota Nation,  19th Generation Keeper of the Sacred White Buffalo Calf Pipe




Let us never forget that our Creator doesn’t create unnecessary people. We all can be reminded with this story that we should never take anyone, anywhere, anytime for granted.    Read More...





Happiness is a Voyage

By Grandmother L. Cota Nupah Makah


     If you open your heart when it is hurting and offer your hand to another then you have connected to what being a human being is all about. One cannot go through life hating or being selfish or mistrusting for any reason. I know at times in our humanness we all find this part of our lives as not acceptable but we all do it just the same.


I was feeling rather down as the traffic was slow and not being an established reader with no banner or advertising I certainly was just sitting there watching the crowd pass by.


I saw this young black African mother and her baby sitting waiting for a reading. Finally I made eye contact with her and she smiled and so did her baby. Being bored out of my mind we started to talk and she came to my table for a few minutes.


I had to of course; being a grandmother, and missing my own children, make some contact with her and the baby. We spoke and chatted for a while then she left after making an appointment with my friend for a reading on Sunday.


She came back on Sunday to get a reading but was late to her appointment because she could not find her wallet in her hurry to get herself and the baby dressed and ready to come to the fair.   Read More..










Manataka Elder, 75-year old Grandfather Daniel Seven Hawk Eyes Hoffman, was recently diagnosed with Myelodysplastic Syndrome (MDS) Notwithstanding his severe illness, he is a strong man in many respects and maintains a beautiful disposition and attitude. We ask for prayers for our dear respected elder and friend.

Manataka Elder, 76-year old Grandfather Jimmie A. Looking For Wind Keefauver, recently underwent hospitalization for a serious blood disease and infections and is recovering at home. Jimmie appears to be doing much better now. We are offering up prayers for our revered friend and honored elder.


7-year old Ian Ryan Hit By USPS Truck
"I got a call at 3:45 a.m. our time today that our grandson who lives in Georgia was struck by a mail carrier vehicle and dragged 150 feet. He was flown to Egleston Children's Emergency Hospital in Atlanta. He is in surgery now. My wife Jo is on her way driving up there at this time. Please keep our grandson Ian Ryan (7) in your prayers as well as Jo's safe trip up there. Ian was hit as he played in a sandbox in his yard. The last update was 04-05-12 when it was reported that Ian is home and very sore. According to his granfather, "Prayer works!" ~Rev. Fred Wilcoxson, Manataka Elder 03-28-12




Cherokee National Treasure William “Bill” Eugene Rabbit of Pryor passed away April 9 in Tulsa at age 65. Rabbit was born in Wyoming on Dec. 3, 1946, and grew up in Pryor. He won numerous awards during the 30-plus years he worked as an artist. For nearly 20 years he worked in partnership with his daughter Traci, who is also an accomplished artist. They shared a studio in Pryor. In 2011, the Cherokee Nation named him a National Treasure for his artistry and for preserving Cherokee culture through his artwork.

When Onondaga Nation Clanmother Audrey Shenandoah-Gonwaiani passed into the spirit world on March 15 not only her family and community mourned but the entire Haudenosaunee Confederacy was cast into sorrow. For the past four decades she was a steady, reliable and dignified presence at Onondaga, ever ready to speak on behalf of the people while welcoming visitors to the capital and central fire of the world's first united nations. As a clanmother (Iakoiane in the Mohawk dialect of the Iroquois language) Gonwaiani accepted the responsibilities as not only a clan leader but as a caretaker for the culture of her nation. She was selected as clan leader after being closely observed by her people. They saw in her compassion, dedication, humility, knowledge, patience and a deep respect for the traditions and customs which define Haudenosaunee life. She was articulate in the Onondaga language, a skill which she shared with the Onondaga children for decades as a teacher at the Nation's school.


Niles Cesar, Tlingit and Haida Indian from Juneau, who was an integral piece in Indian health care in Alaska, walked on recently at his home in Anchorage, surrounded by his family and friends after a long illness according to Cesar spent 20 years in the Medical Service Corps, including a year in Vietnam, before retiring from the Navy as a Lieutenant according to the He went on to receive his B.S. degree in environmental health. He spent 11 years (1979 to 1990) as the executive vice president of Southeast Alaska Regional Health Consortium, before leaving to spend the next 19 years as the director for the Alaska Bureau of Indian Affairs according to Through his time at the BIA, he worked to gain the most out of the services and benefits available to Alaska Natives, reported He established the BIA Providers Conference and was an advocacy member on the Federal Subsistence Board in Alaska.


Robert Hall was born in Green Bay, Wisconsin and grew up with three generations of Stockbridge-Munsee women, so it’s no surprise he became known by his colleagues at the University of Illinois at Chicago as a leading authority on Native Americans.

Jim Brown, professor emeritus at Northwestern University, told the Chicago Tribune that Hall’s books—An Archaeology of the Soul: North American Indian Belief and Ritual (University of Illinois Press, 1997) and a forthcoming companion Touching History: Four Centuries of Indian-White Relations—mark a turning point in Native American studies.  But Hall won’t see his forthcoming book in print: He walked on March 16, at age 85 from complications associated with carcinoid cancer. He will be missed by the community at the University of Illinois at Chicago. He taught there from 1968 to 1998 and spent 10 of those years as chair of the Anthropology Department.


Calvin E. Lay of the Cattaraugus Indian Reservation, World War II veteran and long-time member of Seneca Nation Politics died February 19, 2012 in the Gowanda Nursing Home, Gowanda, New York, following a short illness. He was 86. According to Buffalo News, Lay was born in Red House, near Salamanca, New York; educated at the Thomas Indian School; and held various governmental positions with the Seneca Indian Nation throughout his life. Lay served in the Army’s 102nd Infantry Division, seeing combat in France and Belgium. According to Observer Today, he was a member of Iroquois Post 1587, American Legion, and held posts as chaplain, treasurer and commander. A member of the Deer Clan, Lay also served on boards for the Seneca Nation Library, the Seneca Nation Iroquois Museum, and helped fund the Tri-County and Lake Shore hospitals according to The Sun News.


Richard M. Milanovich - December 4, 1942 - March 11, 2012. Our community and the country have lost a courageous lion-hearted leader. A powerful voice for an entire culture will continue to be heard through the mystical whispers of time. Once in a generation comes a leader who demonstrates the character of true greatness – courage, humility and selflessness. Richard Milanovich, tribal chairman of the Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians, was that kind of leader. He’s had the courage to take a stand against withering opposition in Washington and fight for all Native Americans. He possessed the humility to understand that his leadership was the legacy of his ancestors; and he took selfless risks that had inherent perils for potentially significant rewards for his people.

As the Tribal Chairman for nearly 30 years, Richard Milanovich has an extraordinary legacy.


Mario Hankerson.  A little-known Mikkosukee linguist friend of mine. 1/2 Mikkosukee/ 1/2 Zulu. Conversational in the languages of the 5 Civilized Tribes: Choctaw, Cherokee, Chickasaw, Creek, and Seminole, as well as the entirely different language, Mikkosukee. Had to leave Florida at an early age because the schools only taught to the 6th grade. Attended (now defunct) St. Catherine's in New Mexico where he became conversant in the Tiwa, Towa, Tewa, and Keres languages. Was allowed in the kiva at Santo Domingo and ran on the school track team (440 yard dash). Taught in the Sierra Tarahumara for 6 years, where he became conversant in Tarahumara (raramuri) and Spanish. Former administrator of the Ysleta del Sur Pueblo. Survived many years with diabetes, failed kidneys, and amputated legs at the knees.  Always made the best of things. In the Sierra, he was called "chocame gano", meaning "black giant". Very sad to see him go. Another Native American library has burned to the ground.


Josephine Jackson, who held a number of positions with the Saginaw Chippewa Indian Tribe, walked on at the age of 76 on Monday, March 19. She was partially responsible for improving economic development on the Isabella Indian Reservation by bringing bingo to the tribe. She was part of a group that traveled to Florida in 1981 to see how the Seminole Tribe ran its bingo operation, reported the Morning Sun.  What started as a small bingo operation in the tribal gymnasium has become the Soaring Eagle Casino & Resort in Mount Pleasant, Michigan and the Saganing Eagles Landing Casino in Standish, Michigan.  “She was always looking for a way to enhance the revenue for the tribe,” long-time friend Bonnie Sprague, who now is the general manager of the Soaring Eagle Waterpark, slated to open in late spring, told the Morning Sun.  Jackson, the daughter of Thomas and Beatrice (Davis) Pierce, was born on December 23, 1935 in Flint, Michigan. On January 25, 1954 she married Willis Jackson in Mount Pleasant, Michigan. She worked for the State of Michigan in Vocational Rehabilitation services, and was the general manager of the Soaring Eagle Casino in the early 1980s.


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