Welcome!

News Feed Item

Newseum Presents Staged Reading of 'Waaxe's Law'

Performance will feature dramatic retelling of the first federal court decision to declare Native Americans to be "persons" under the law

WASHINGTON, Dec. 4, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Newseum will host a performance of "Waaxe's Law" in the museum's Walter and Leonore Annenberg Theater on Wednesday, Dec. 12, 2012, at 7:30 p.m.

In 1879, a Ponca Indian chief stood up, extended his hand, and made one of the greatest arguments for equality under the law in the history of the United States. Chief Standing Bear demanded that a federal court afford him the same rights as whites under the law, despite the fact that his skin was a different color.

Cherokee playwright and attorney Mary Kathryn Nagle wrote "Waaxe's Law," a play that tells the story of the forced removal of the Ponca tribe to present-day Oklahoma and Chief Standing Bear's subsequent journey for justice — a journey that resulted in the first federal court decision declaring Indians to be "persons" under the law. Although Chief Standing Bear won his fight for equality in 1879 — a full 75 years before the Supreme Court issued its decision in Brown v. Board of Education — very few Americans know of his story or the freedoms he won for Native Americans.

"The Ponca tribe of Nebraska would not be where we are today if it was not for Chief Standing Bear; in fact, we may not even exist if it were not for this great chief. 'Waaxe's Law' is more than a play; it is a part of our tribe's history," says Rebecca White, chairwoman, Ponca tribe of Nebraska. 

Oliver Littlecook, member of the Ponca Tribe of Oklahoma's Tribal Council, adds, "To the Ponca people, the story of Chief Standing Bear is one of courage and sacrifice: the courage to fulfill a commitment against all odds and adversity, and the sacrifice of your own life in the pursuit of what you believe."

The performance features a cast of 13 performers, including the Ponca Tribe of Oklahoma's honored elder, Louis Headman, who reads the part of Chief Standing Bear.  Headman's grandmother, Virginia (Big Soldier) Headman, survived the Ponca's forced removal in 1877, when the government made the Ponca leave Nebraska and walk 600 miles to what is now Oklahoma. Today, Headman is one of only four individuals who speak the Ponca language fluently, and he has dedicated his life to the preservation of his language and the culture of his people.

"We are honored to present 'Waaxe's Law' at the Newseum," Nagle says. "Chief Standing Bear did for Native Americans what Martin Luther King Jr. did for African Americans, and being invited to present this story at the Newseum is a significant step towards ensuring that all Americans will come to appreciate Standing Bear's legacy."

Nagle first wrote "Waaxe's Law" three years ago when it was presented at the United States District Courthouse in Omaha, Neb., on the 130th anniversary of Judge Elmer Dundy's seminal ruling. Since then, Omaha's Great Plains Theatre Conference, produced by Metropolitan Community College, has worked to develop the play into the success that it is now.

Mary Kathryn Nagle, a citizen of the Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma, is an award-winning playwright whose plays have been performed in New Orleans, Oklahoma, Omaha, Washington and New York. She is currently a writer in the Emerging Writers Group at the Public Theater in New York, where she also works in litigation at a national law firm.  Her article "Standing Bear v. Crook: The Case for Equality under Waaxe's Law," was recently published by the Creighton University Law Review.

Admission to the staged reading at the Newseum is free, but space is limited. For tickets and more information, click here.

About the Newseum
The Newseum — a 250,000-square-foot museum of news and history — offers visitors an experience that blends five centuries of news history with up-to-the-second technology and hands-on exhibits. Within its seven levels of galleries and theaters, the Newseum offers a unique environment that takes museum-goers behind the scenes to experience how and why news is made. The Newseum ranks as one of the top attractions in Washington, D.C., and more than 3 million people have visited since it opened in 2008. For more information visit newseum.org or follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

About Metropolitan Community College and the Great Plains Theatre Conference 
Great Plains Theatre Conference, presented by Metropolitan Community College in Omaha, Neb., is entering its eighth year providing a collaborative environment for playwrights to develop their craft and create new work. Metropolitan Community College, accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association, is a comprehensive, public community college. Founded in 1974, MCC serves more than 50,000 students annually. In addition to academic offerings, Metropolitan Community College's mission is carried out through high-quality artistic events like the Great Plains Theatre Conference. For more information visit www.mccneb.edu/gptc or follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

SOURCE Newseum

More Stories By PR Newswire

Copyright © 2007 PR Newswire. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of PRNewswire content is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of PRNewswire. PRNewswire shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

Latest Stories
Containers have changed the mind of IT in DevOps. They enable developers to work with dev, test, stage and production environments identically. Containers provide the right abstraction for microservices and many cloud platforms have integrated them into deployment pipelines. DevOps and containers together help companies achieve their business goals faster and more effectively. In his session at DevOps Summit, Ruslan Synytsky, CEO and Co-founder of Jelastic, reviewed the current landscape of Dev...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Catchpoint, a leading digital experience intelligence company, has been named “Silver Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Catchpoint Systems is a leading Digital Performance Analytics company that provides unparalleled insight into your customer-critical services to help you consistently deliver an amazing customer experience. Designed for digital business, C...
With major technology companies and startups seriously embracing IoT strategies, now is the perfect time to attend @ThingsExpo 2016 in New York. Learn what is going on, contribute to the discussions, and ensure that your enterprise is as "IoT-Ready" as it can be! Internet of @ThingsExpo, taking place June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, New York, is co-located with 20th Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry p...
@DevOpsSummit at Cloud taking place June 6-8, 2017, at Javits Center, New York City, is co-located with the 20th International Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. The widespread success of cloud computing is driving the DevOps revolution in enterprise IT. Now as never before, development teams must communicate and collaborate in a dynamic, 24/7/365 environment. There is no time to wait for long developm...
"We formed Formation several years ago to really address the need for bring complete modernization and software-defined storage to the more classic private cloud marketplace," stated Mark Lewis, Chairman and CEO of Formation Data Systems, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 18th Cloud Expo, held June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
Updating DevOps to the latest production data slows down your development cycle. Probably it is due to slow, inefficient conventional storage and associated copy data management practices. In his session at @DevOpsSummit at 20th Cloud Expo, Dhiraj Sehgal, in Product and Solution at Tintri, will talk about DevOps and cloud-focused storage to update hundreds of child VMs (different flavors) with updates from a master VM in minutes, saving hours or even days in each development cycle. He will also...
In his General Session at 17th Cloud Expo, Bruce Swann, Senior Product Marketing Manager for Adobe Campaign, explored the key ingredients of cross-channel marketing in a digital world. Learn how the Adobe Marketing Cloud can help marketers embrace opportunities for personalized, relevant and real-time customer engagement across offline (direct mail, point of sale, call center) and digital (email, website, SMS, mobile apps, social networks, connected objects).
A look across the tech landscape at the disruptive technologies that are increasing in prominence and speculate as to which will be most impactful for communications – namely, AI and Cloud Computing. In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Curtis Peterson, VP of Operations at RingCentral, will highlight the current challenges of these transformative technologies and share strategies for preparing your organization for these changes. This “view from the top” will outline the latest trends and developm...
Things are changing so quickly in IoT that it would take a wizard to predict which ecosystem will gain the most traction. In order for IoT to reach its potential, smart devices must be able to work together. Today, there are a slew of interoperability standards being promoted by big names to make this happen: HomeKit, Brillo and Alljoyn. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Adam Justice, vice president and general manager of Grid Connect, will review what happens when smart devices don’t work togethe...
When you focus on a journey from up-close, you look at your own technical and cultural history and how you changed it for the benefit of the customer. This was our starting point: too many integration issues, 13 SWP days and very long cycles. It was evident that in this fast-paced industry we could no longer afford this reality. We needed something that would take us beyond reducing the development lifecycles, CI and Agile methodologies. We made a fundamental difference, even changed our culture...
“RackN is a software company and we take how a hybrid infrastructure scenario, which consists of clouds, virtualization, traditional data center technologies - how to make them all work together seamlessly from an operational perspective,” stated Dan Choquette, Founder of RackN, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @DevOpsSummit at 18th Cloud Expo, held June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
@DevOpsSummit taking place June 6-8, 2017 at Javits Center, New York City, is co-located with the 20th International Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. @DevOpsSummit at Cloud Expo New York Call for Papers is now open.
"Tintri was started in 2008 with the express purpose of building a storage appliance that is ideal for virtualized environments. We support a lot of different hypervisor platforms from VMware to OpenStack to Hyper-V," explained Dan Florea, Director of Product Management at Tintri, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 18th Cloud Expo, held June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
"There's a growing demand from users for things to be faster. When you think about all the transactions or interactions users will have with your product and everything that is between those transactions and interactions - what drives us at Catchpoint Systems is the idea to measure that and to analyze it," explained Leo Vasiliou, Director of Web Performance Engineering at Catchpoint Systems, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 18th Cloud Expo, held June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York Ci...
The 20th International Cloud Expo has announced that its Call for Papers is open. Cloud Expo, to be held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, brings together Cloud Computing, Big Data, Internet of Things, DevOps, Containers, Microservices and WebRTC to one location. With cloud computing driving a higher percentage of enterprise IT budgets every year, it becomes increasingly important to plant your flag in this fast-expanding business opportunity. Submit your speaking proposal ...