Preservation: Indians on the Internet

jun09_preservation_250Indians on the Internet

The National Museum of the American Indian houses three Smithsonian museums, in Washington, DC and New York City, under one umbrella. Now there’s a fourth museum. A virtual one.

The online museum already features 5,500 items. The collection totals 800,000 objects, and it will take four years to post it all on the Internet. The caveat? Some artifacts will not be photographed due to tribal beliefs. The initial cost: $750,000.

The archive includes artifacts, photos and documents from all North American tribes. Museum Director Kevin Gover says the project is a chance to expose Indians to their heritage. “We know most native people will never visit any of our three museums,” he concedes. “We wanted to provide this experience to them.”

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Mark Boardman

Mark Boardman is the features editor for True West Magazine as well as the editor of The Tombstone Epitaph. He also serves as pastor for Poplar Grove United Methodist Church in Indiana.