Updated 12/12/10

In Podcast #37 the Trekkers and their families visit King William County to see the Mattaponi Pow Wow.  A pow wow is a sacred gathering of American Indians with singing and dancing.  There are also vendors selling American Indian crafts.  The Mattaponi Indians are part of the Algonquian language group and were under Chief Powhatan when the settlers arrived at Jamestown in 1607.  They are one of only two Indian groups who own reservation land in Virginia (the other group is the Pumunkey Indians).  Their reservation was created by the Virginia General Assembly in 1658 and is one of the oldest reservations in the country.  Find out more about American Indian crafts, clothing, and culture in our podcast.  Come on, let’s go trekkin’!

Every year, for the past 333 years the Mattoponi and Pumunkey Indians (Powhatans) have been presenting a tribute of animals to the governor of Virginia.  This tradition began with the 1677 Treaty of Middle Plantation, and the annual tribute was to be “20 beaver skins” presented “at the going away of the geese” (in the autumn).  It was an agreement between King Charles II of England and various “Indian Kings and Queens.” The Indians agreed to pay tribute to the king and in return they were allowed to keep their land and fishing rights. In modern times, the tribute is usually deer and turkey presented in a small ceremony on the grounds of the governor’s mansion in Richmond, Virginia on or around Thanksgiving (Source) You can read the original 1677 treaty by clicking here.

SOL Correlation:

1.7 Goods: things people make or use to satisfy needs and wants. Services: activities that satisfy people’s wants Buyer: a person who uses money to purchase a good or a service Seller: a person who sells a good or service People are buyers when they use money to purchase goods or services People are sellers when they receive money for goods they sell or for services they provide.

2.2 The student will compare the lives and contributions of American Indians (First Americans), with emphasis on the Powhatan of the Eastern Woodlands, the Sioux of the Plains, and the Pueblo people of the Southwest.

3.7 The student will explain how producers use natural resources (water, soil, wood, and coal), human resources (people at work), and capital resources (machines, tools, and buildings) to produce goods and services for consumers.

VS.2d The student will demonstrate knowledge of the geography and early inhabitants of Virginia by d) locating three American Indian (First American) language groups (the Algonquian, the Siouan, and the Iroquoian) on a map of Virginia;

VS.3g The student will demonstrate knowledge of the first permanent English settlement in America by g) describing the interactions between the English settlers and the Powhatan people, including the contributions of the Powhatans to the survival of the settlers.

VS.4b The student will demonstrate knowledge of life in the Virginia colony byb) describing how European (English, Scotch-Irish, German) immigrants, Africans, and American Indians (First Americans) influenced the cultural landscape and changed the relationship between the Virginia colony and England;

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Coastal Plain

The Mattaponi and Pumunkey Indians present their annual tribute to Governor McDonnell on Nov 24, 2010. Credits.