Eiteljorg Musuem Blog
  • Indian Market & Festival | The 1491s

    by Jaq Nigg, Eiteljorg festivals and markets manager | Jun 16, 2015

    As Indian Market and Festival draws near, we’d like to tell you about some of the things we’re extra excited about.

    #1: The 1491s are coming! The 1491s are coming!

    Performing both Saturday and Sunday at 1:30pm at Indian Market and Festival as well as a sneak performance at the Friday night Preview Party, the comedy group The 1491s


    Our official descriptions of The 1491s:

    Admired by fans for poking fun of stereotypes and offering unexpected insights into contemporary Native American life, the sketch comedy group 1491s has received national recognition for their mix of irreverent, ironic and highly infectious humor. Recently featured on a segment of The Daily Show with Jon Stewart that focused on issues surrounding the name of the Washington NFL team, the 1491s don’t shy away from uncomfortable subjects. Using performance art and social media, they have built a large following challenging perceptions and taking aim at the appropriation of Indigenous cultures.

    In their own words (from their website):

    The 1491s comedy group is based in the wooded ghettos of Minnesota and buffalo grass of Oklahoma. They are a gaggle of Indians chock full of cynicism and splashed with a good dose of Indigenous satire. They coined the term “All My Relations,” and are still waiting for the royalties. They were at Custer’s Last Stand. They mooned Chris Columbus when he landed. They invented bubble gum.


    1491s - courtesy of 1491s 

    Basically, the 1491s are funny. But, don’t take our word for it. Check out some of their videos:

    Indian Store

    Honor Song

    I’m an Indian Too

    Represent – Jingle Dance

    Before the kick-off of Indian Market, the Eiteljorg will host two parties Friday, June 26 – the official IMF Preview Party and the AfterGlow party featuring the 1491s and DJ Kyle Long.

    Preview Party Details
    5:30 p.m. – 9 p.m.
    Price: $90/members $100/non-members
    An exclusive first-look shopping opportunity and reception. Attendees get free weekend passes to Indian Market and Festival.

    IMF AfterGlow
    9 p.m. – 11 p.m.
    Price: Free for AGAVE members and $15/non-members and non-Indian Market and Festival Preview Party attendees
    Grab a glow stick and join us for beverages, dancing, desserts and entertainment by the 1491s and DJ Kyle Long. Interact with artists in a relaxed setting along the canal and underneath The Sails of the Eiteljorg. Call (317) 275-1333 to make reservations.

    Time, Tickets and Parking
    - Indian Market and Festival will be held from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., in White River State Park’s Military Park, just north of the museum in downtown Indianapolis.

    - Discounted advanced tickets for the event are on sale at the Eiteljorg Museum, on the museum’s website and Marsh Supermarkets or by calling 1-800-622-2024.

    - Advance sale tickets are $10. Tickets during the market are $12 at the gate. Kids 17 and under are FREE. Admission to the Eiteljorg is included.

    - White River State Park underground garage next to the Eiteljorg Museum and IUPUI parking lots across from Military Park provides the most convenient and inexpensive parking for this event. Shuttles to and from the museum are available.

    -Parking in the White River State Park garage will not be validated Indian Market weekend.

    For even more information about what’s happening Indian Market weekend, and to purchase advance sale tickets, visit Indian Market & Festival info.

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  • Eiteljorg Video Series: Want Great Food? Plant an Herb Garden!

    by Brian Poonpanij, Kahn's Catering Vice President of Food and Beverage | Jun 09, 2015


    Kahn's Catering is the Eiteljorg's exclusive caterer. Please watch the video above to learn great tips on how to grow your own herb garden from Chef Sam, Kahn's Executive Chef. And, Brian Poonpanij, Kahn's Vice President of Food and Beverage also shares some wonderful tips on how to bring more flavor to our food in the blog post below.

    So many of our recipes depend on fresh herbs. Fresh herbs impart a flavor that you cannot duplicate with dried herbs. Select the herbs you love, the ones you'll use in the items you frequently cook. Also select herbs that will grow well where you intend to plant them. Check the tag, or with your local nursery to learn where your herbs will grow best.

    Whether planting in a garden or into a container, great soil matters. Composting your food and garden waste helps to reduce waste and create a valuable soil amendment.  Soil amendments add nutrients, and help to lighten or drain dense or heavy soils, helping plants to be healthier. Alternatively, you can purchase bagged soils or soil amendments. My favorite brand is Garden Magic, which has a great quality, dark, rich peat that I mix into the soil before I plant any vegetables, flowers, shrubs or trees. (Garden Magic Peat is available at Rosie’s Gardens in Carmel, IN)


    When transplanting plants, don’t do it in the heat of day. Evening is a great time to get things planted. Start by preparing a hole about 50 percent deeper and wider than the root ball of the plant you are planting (This is so the plant has great soil into which it can establish new roots). Put some of your soil amendment into the hole, so that when you put in the plant, the top of the root ball will be equal to the surrounding soil. Carefully take the root ball, and use your fingers to loosen it a bit. Set the plant in the hole, and carefully fill a mix of soil and soil amendment back around the plant. Don’t pack the soil too tight as it needs to breath. Lightly water.

    Keep in mind your plant will need more attention during the first weeks while it settles in.  Make sure to keep the soil moist while it establishes new roots.

    You saw our Chef in the video pinch off the tip of the stem. This helps encourage fuller growth. You can do it when you plant it. Keep an eye on herbs like basil, which will want to flower in warm weather. Don’t let it flower, as flavor diminishes. Just pinch off the flower heads as they appear.

    With very little effort, you can get great, fresh herbs, from your own garden. But, if you don’t have the time or space, you can get fresh herbs at your grocery. Don’t skimp, it’s the best way to get fresh flavor in many dishes.

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  • The 1909 Alaska-Yukon-Pacific Exposition

    by Lyndsey Blair, Curatororial Intern | Jun 03, 2015

    AYP Gold_bricks from Scandinavian American Bank,_A-Y-P,_1909
    Gold Bricks from Scandinavian American Bank inside A-Y-P’s Alaska Building

     In 1907, to celebrate the tenth anniversary of the Klondike Gold Rush, Seattle’s civic leaders decided to organize a world’s fair.  World’s fairs (or international expositions) played a prominent role in American and European society from the late nineteenth century until World War I.  These events provided fairgoers the chance to experience the latest cultural, educational, and technological trends from around the world.  Expos also offered host cities the opportunity to demonstrate their importance within the international community.  Seattle’s civic leaders used theirs to promote the city as a gateway to the resources of Alaska, the Yukon, and Asia. 

    AYP Aerial_view_of_the_Alaska-Yukon-Pacific_Exposition_-_1909
    Aerial View of A-Y-P Expo

    Seattle’s world’s fair, officially known as the Alaska-Yukon-Pacific Exposition (A-Y-P), opened on June 1, 1909.  Organizers rescheduled to avoid conflicting with the 1907 Jamestown Exposition in Norfolk, Virginia.   This decision proved advantageous as it gave developers two extra years to plan the expo, which was held on the University of Washington’s campus.

    A-Y-P was not only a celebration of Seattle’s recent growth but the development of the larger Pacific Northwest.  Several counties, territories, and states from this region had their own exhibits and/or buildings to educate three million fairgoers about their resources.  For example, the Alaska Building had information about the territory’s timber, whaling, and petroleum industries.  It also featured several gold displays, including a heavily fortified case with more than one million dollars in gold bricks, nuggets, and dust.

    AYP Official_guide_to_the_Alaska-Yukon-Pacific_Exposition_-_Seattle,_Washington,_June_1_to_October_16,_1909_-_Cover
    Official A-Y-P Guide Book with Logo

    AYP Klondyke_Dance_Hall_and_saloon on Pay Streak,_A-Y-P,_1909
    “Klondyke Dance Hall” on A-Y-P’s Pay Streak

    Gold played an important role throughout the Alaska-Yukon-Pacific Exposition.  For example, A-Y-P’s official logo featured a goddess holding gold nuggets.  Meanwhile, AYP Souvenir_Taft_Day_official_program_-_Front_cover
    the fair’s midway (or entertainment zone) was called “The Pay Streak.”  This term is a mining reference to the location in a stream where gold has deposited.  Even President Taft got into the spirit (Pictured: “Taft Day Official Program” from A-Y-P Expo). During his two-day expo visit, the president mined for gold in the Alaska Building and also received an honorary Arctic Brotherhood degree.  The Arctic Brotherhood, a fraternal organization of Klondike gold- stampeders formed in 1899, played a large role in organizing the fair.  

    A-Y-P officially ended on October 16, 1909.  While most of the expo’s buildings have since been demolished, the fair’s memory lives on. 

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  • No Place For A Lady? Think Again

    by Johanna M. Blume, Eiteljorg assistant curator of Western Art | Jun 01, 2015

    While men may have outnumbered women in gold camps throughout the West, women were very much a part of the fabric of community life. Some came to the gold regions with their husbands, fathers, sons, or brothers; some struck out on their own; some made their livings by doing tasks traditionally done by women at the time, such as cooking and laundry; others ran hotels or prospected for gold. Prostitutes plied their trade from the brothels and dancehalls that proliferated in gold rush towns. Middle- to upper-class women were often at the forefront of efforts to elevate the moral character of their communities, spearheading campaigns to build libraries, schools, and hospitals and to provide relief to those who had fallen on hard times. Women’s experiences in the gold rushes were nothing if not diverse.

    Barge on Yukon River, Klondike Gold Rush
    , 1898
    Image courtesy of the Washington State Historical Society; 2009.0.1900

    woman's outfit
    Woman’s Ensemble, ca. 1885
    Silk, lace
    Loan courtesy of Deadwood History, Inc., Days of ’76 Collection

    Go comment!

  • Forging Community | What life was like in Gold Rush towns

    by Johanna M. Blume, Eiteljorg assistant curator | May 29, 2015

    This is the only hotel in this vicinity, and as there is a really excellent bowling alley attached to it, and the barroom has a floor upon which the miners can dance, and, above all, a cook who can play the violin, it is very popular.
    —Louise Clappe, Indian Bar, California, October 7, 1851

    In California the richest diggings were isolated in the northern ranges of the Sierra Nevada. The gold camps were often temporary, as most gold seekers did not intend to stay in California after making their fortunes, and this in turn contributed to a rougher character overall. However, these communities were not without their luxuries. Most gold camps contained a sampling of shops and businesses, roadhouses, and drinking and gambling establishments. The camp at Rich Bar even had a bowling alley!

    San Francisco served as a hub of social and business activity for the thousands of people coming in to and going out of California during the gold rush. Many who made their fortunes, whether through mining for gold or “mining the miners,” settled in the city and became part of the city’s elite class.

     eliza jane steen johnson-for blog
     Untitled (Eliza Jane Steen-Johnson), ca. 1852
    Image courtesy of the Collection of the Oakland Museum of California. Gift of Barbara Smith; H96.44.1

    Eliza Steen-Johnson and her husband settled in San Francisco after emigrating from Ireland in 1850. They owned and operated a dry goods store and hat shop in the city.

    On Saturday May 30 at 2 p.m., join Gold! curator, Johanna Blume, for a gallery talk that explores what life was like in gold rush communities, with a special focus on the stories of women in the California, Black Hills, and Yukon-Klondike gold rushes.

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