The Field Center is located in what is now known as the Town of Rockingham, Vermont near the village of Bellows Falls/Kchi Pôntegok (Great Falls) about 30 miles upriver from Brattleboro/Wantastegok (At the River Where Something Is Lost).
It is home to 50 acres of forest rising up from the banks of the Williams River and is used by bobcat, coyote, bear, moose, frog, deer, rabbit, fox, turkey, porcupine, hawk, eagle, weasel, owl, beaver, opossum, skunk and vast communities of non-human beings.
We acknowledge that these are also the traditional and ongoing homelands of the Algonquian-speaking Abenaki [a-BEN-aki], one of the five nations in the Wabanaki (Dawnland) Confederacy. The Abenaki and their ancestors have lived and thrived as part of this land, and throughout what is known today as northern New England and southern Quebec, for twelve thousand years before their land was stolen, facing genocide through waves of Euro-American and Canadian colonization (which continues).
The present day political constructs on this land were built through and inside of that experience and by those superimposed forces, including processes of legal recognition or erasure.
As a result of these long-contested processes, today this area is home to the Elnu Abenaki, one of four Vermont State-recognized Bands (2011). Note that not all Native communities and individuals are affiliated with a recognized or organized band.
Missisquoi Abenaki Tribal Website | northwestern Vermont
Koasek Abenaki Tribe | east central Vermont
We encourage you to connect with these people! The Abenaki are very much alive and active in the area and we invite you to learn more about them and their realities.
This acknowledgement was co-written and approved by Rich Holschuh, Chairman for the Vermont Commission on Native American Affairs
We also strongly encourage you to seek out and connect with Indigenous communities around you as a practice - regardless of where you live - to learn about them and to listen to and support them. Engaging with, amplifying, and prioritizing voices from Indigenous and First Nations people is an essential part of the ongoing reconciliation and healing work that is necessary in these Lands.
HERE IS A MAP to help you find and acknowledge the tribes in your area NOTE: please contact local nations to verify
We resolve to learn and honor the true histories and realities of the spaces and places in which we live and work, and to integrate these truths into our own perspectives - no matter how painful - and to acknowledge our complicity and our power in making positive change through our decisions. We are currently in the process of constructing a permanent, physical land acknowledgement at the Field Center.