OETA premieres ‘Chilocco Through the Years’ on Thanksgiving Day

BY STAFF REPORTS
11/26/2019 10:30 AM
STILLWATER – “Chilocco Through the Years” is a documentary based on the award-winning project from the OSU Library’s Oklahoma Oral History Research Program. It premieres on OETA at 7:30 p.m. on Nov. 28 and will rebroadcast at 6 p.m. on Dec. 28 and at 2 p.m. on Dec. 29.

The half-hour program examines the legacy of the Chilocco Indian Agricultural School through the lens of thousands of students from over 127 federally-recognized tribes. Chilocco was the largest intertribal Native boarding school in the U.S. The school, located in north central Oklahoma, was in operation from 1884 to 1980.

The documentary is just one component of the larger Chilocco History Project, a three-year collaborative effort between the Chilocco National Alumni Association and the OOHRP. The initiative was spearheaded by Visiting Assistant Professor Julie Pearson-Little Thunder; OOHRP Head and Hyle Family Endowed Professor Sarah Milligan; and CNAA Veterans Project Committee members Charmain Baker, Jim Baker, Betty Pino and Bill Pino.

“The documentary examines this powerful site of memory, not just for the school’s alumni, but for anyone willing to explore this country’s complex history with Native peoples,” said Milligan. “The timing for this CNAA partnership is critical, as the historic campus has deteriorated in the 40 years since the school’s closing. Without intervention, the only experience possible with this historic space will be through recorded history.”

Firethief Media produced the documentary in conjunction with the OSU Library’s OOHRP and the Chilocco National Alumni Association. It was made possible with support from the Tom J. and Edna M. Carson Foundation and the OSU Library through the Puterbaugh Professorship for Library Service, the Clerico Family Chair for Library Excellence, and the Hyle Family Professorship.

Formally established in 2007, the OOHRP at the OSU Library has collected and preserved firsthand accounts from individuals who have played a part in Oklahoma’s history. The Program explores the lives and contributions of Oklahomans from all walks of life. To learn more about the OOHRP call 405-744-7685, email liboh@okstate.edu, or visit library.okstate.edu/oralhistory/. The Chilocco History Project and information about its partners can be found at chilocco.library.okstate.edu.

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