Local Graduate Unveils Plans For New Lakota Museum
A college student from the Pine Ridge Reservation is unveiling plans for a new museum near Mt. Rushmore. Developers hope to showcase artifacts from Native American history and use the profits to benefit the economy on Pine Ridge.
Adonis Saltes is graduating from a Utah college in May. He’s planning to move back to South Dakota to start a museum. Saltes says the first step is buying land.
“It’s a big deal, I mean we’re talking 731 acres of the Black Hills that we have an opportunity to get back. Aa lot of land that was used for camps for our ancestors before the Battle of Little Bighorn, that was Sitting Bull's last stop. There’s a lot of photos of chief Black Elk on that land.”
Saltes is releasing an internet crowdfunding campaign to raise money for the land. He says celebrities, including members of the band The Black Eyed Peas, plan to share his idea across social media platforms.
Saltes says this museum is a chance for Native Americans to tell history from a different perspective.
“We want to tell the good about our people, our way of life, the powerful medicine men that came through our people. And we want to tell people ‘this is where we are. This is where we’re going.’ There’s so much history that people are missing.”
Local people have donated some items to the museum. Saltes says he plans to work with museums across the country to find more history to display.