Our ongoing “Regional Tour of American Indian Cultures” highlights the traditional aspects of transportation, food, housing, clothing, and arts while also showcasing how American Indian communities adapted in order to maintain their way of life as much as possible in a post-colonial world. The ongoing exhibit also includes regional interactive touch tables and a life-sized hunting wigwam that give visitors a hands-on learning experience; perfect for children and the whole family.

Reclaiming Cultural Treasures

In collaboration with the Chinese American Museum of Chicago and the Ethiopian Community Association of Chicago, our newest rotating exhibit explores the continued efforts of tribal communities and other global groups to reclaim culturally significant items that are held in private and public collections across the world. While the view on returning cultural items to their home communities has changed in favor of indigenous groups, the process is still complicated and disadvantageous to those seeking justice.

Stunning Stories in Native American Jewelry

Storytelling takes form in many ways; including Native American jewelry. Our “Stunning Stores in Native American Jewelry” exhibit shines light on the use of jewelry to commemorate significant community, individual events and show community status, cultural solidarity, and assimilation efforts. Native American jewelry and stories continue to evolve and incorporate outside influences.    

Heritage Markers: Local Native American History and Cultures

From street signs to statues, Native American heritage is all around us. While Illinois no longer has any reservations, over 40,000 American Indian peoples representing over 150 tribes live in the Chicagoland area. Dotted throughout the area are markers of Native American heritage from yesterday and today. Our “Heritage Markers: Local Native American History and Cultures” exhibit uses local heritage markers, contemporary Native organizations, street signs, and town names as touchstones to discuss the local Natives and the continued contributions to the Chicagoland area.