A bitter dispute. Violence and murder. Leaders tasked with getting to the bottom of it and helping a community move forward.
No, it’s not the latest Netflix drama – it’s the true story of a fateful event that occurred within the Mohawk Village on the Bay of Quinte on June 10, 1800. And it’s coming to museums, cultural centres, and schools in the coming months.
Tsi Tyónnheht Onkwawén:na (TTO) will debut the Six Strings travelling exhibit at the Museum of Lennox & Addington on Friday, Jun. 3, 2022. It will be on display until Friday, Jun. 24, 2022 before touring other museums.
According to a release from TTO, Six Strings is the compelling, revealing, and true account of how the Mohawk people conducted their own system of justice, embracing reconciliation and forgiveness with the custom of condolence and commitment to move forward toward peace
The museum exhibit, consisting of a series of banners, is based on the themes of an actual transcript of a nine-day Council meeting held in Kenhtè:ke in September 1800. According to the release, the full transcript features the testimonies of witnesses to the murders offering a unique glimpse into the lives of the Mohawk people and their complex interactions with the changing world around them, at a moment in time before Indigenous people were obliged to abide by the British colonial court system.
In addition to hosting the travelling exhibit, on Tuesday, June 7, 2022, at 7 p.m, the Museum of Lennox & Addington will host a screening of a seven-minute teaser film on the Six Strings story in the Mohawk language.
The short film debuted at the Regent Theatre in Picton, Ontario in February and has been accepted into the 2022 Wairoa Mori Film Festival. Full production of Six Strings into a 50-minute documentary film is contingent on future funding and will draw on the talents of Indigenous artists, historians, musicians, and actors to create a vivid and remarkable view of Mohawk life, TTO stated.
“The Six Strings exhibit will help educate both Indigenous Peoples and settlers on many elements of our cultural heritage,” said Callie Hill, Executive Director of TTO. “We envision a community where our stories are part of all aspects of our daily life, and one way we achieve this is through the preservation, sharing and animation of cultural heritage.”
After June, the Six Strings exhibit will be available in four-week rotations to be featured at other museums throughout Ontario and New York State. Museums, cultural centres, schools and historical sites interested in hosting the exhibit should contact TTO.