Monday, January 26, 2015

The Salt Song Trail

Ken provided the information about the Salt Song project and this very moving video from the documentary, The Salt Song Trail. Living in the Morongo Basin you begin to understand how this vast region could be considered sacred: that the sacred dwells in place and not confined in a corner church. This project combines cultural conservancy with environmental protection.

Philip M. Klasky wirites, "The Salt Song Trail won the 'Best Documentary Short' at the 2005 American Indian Film Festival. The film counters the invisibility of native peoples
and exposes the dark period in American history when Indian children were kidnapped from their homes and forced into boarding schools where they suffered physical and psychological abuse and were stripped of their cultures through a brutal and systematic program of cultural genocide.

"The Salt Song Trail, that recorded a ceremony at the site of the Sherman Indian Boarding School in Riverside, California. The singers performed the Salt Songs at the school’s cemetery marked with the little headstones of the children who never made it home. Larry Eddy explained, 'The children who died here, their spirits would hang around here in these mountains forever, but we came here and sang for them and blessed them and blessed the earth where they lay and their spirits will be able to go back to their home country, they will be freed and that’s the significance of the Salt Songs.'"


The Salt Song Trail spans California, Nevada, Utah and Arizona and includes 14 bands of Nuwuvi (Southern Paiute) peoples (Cedar City, Chemehuevi Valley, Colorado River Indian Tribes, Indian Peak, Kaibab, Kanosh, Kawaiisu, Kaiparowits, Las Vegas, Moapa, Koosharem, Pahrump, San Juan, Shivwits, and Twentynine Palms Band of Mission Indians). For more information see: The Cultural Conservancy.