Vickie Jeffries, tribal administrator for the Occaneechi Tribe of the Saponi Nation, shared the culture and arts of this local tribe with students, faculty and staff at Tuesday evening's Global Neighborhood House Dinner.
On Tuesday, April 4, the Global Neighborhood hosted its final House Dinner of the academic year on the theme of “The Arts Without Borders.”
Vickie Jeffries, tribal administrator for the Occaneechi Tribe of the Saponi Nation, a Native American tribe of the Piedmont, discussed the history, culture and arts of her people. Students, faculty, and staff were able to examine many artifacts of the Occaneechi-Saponi, including baskets, drums and sewing materials.
Jeffries told the story her tribe, which hails from the eastern woodlands of the United States and received official recognition from the state of North Carolina in 2002. She invited students, faculty, and staff to visit the Tribal Center in Burlington which houses an exhibition telling the story of the tribe. The Center, located at 4902 Daily Store Rd., is open to the public most weekends.
Jeffries offered reflections on the ways in which traditional basket-weaving is a form of story-telling, with the “fingers are guided” to reveal the story of the materials. That prompted a discussion among students, faculty and staff about the boundaries of ownership regarding tribal artistic methods, symbols and artifacts.
This dinner was the last of a series that has included speakers from across campus and has engaged hundreds of students, faculty and staff during this academic year.