December 24, 2009

Blown away by So Far From Scioto

Williamsburg embraces American Indian presence

‘So Far From Scioto’ re-enactment portrays Shawnee presence in Virginia in 1774

By Vincent Schilling
Many hundreds of tourists visiting Virginia’s historic revolutionary city of Colonial Williamsburg have benefited from a live presentation of “So Far From Scioto,” a story that chronicles the lives of three Shawnee emissaries who came to Williamsburg in 1774 as part of an agreement with Lord Dunmore to cease raids on the Ohio Frontier.

In the re-enactment, the American Indian characters express their dismay in the wake of Lord Dunmore’s fleeing from Williamsburg. As a result of Dunmore’s untimely departure, the Shawnee must choose to either honor their agreement with Dunmore and stay in Williamsburg or return home.

The presentation features an all Native cast consisting of Shawn Michael Perry, who played Neawah; Zahn McClarnon, who played Chenusah; Mike Crowe Jr., who portrayed Cuttemwah; Kody Grant, served as the narrator; and Larry Pourier, who was the character production manager.

According to Jim Bradley, Colonial Williamsburg communications manager, the response has been extremely positive and the crowds have been standing room only. “(People) are just blown away. The actors are great. I have seen this probably 12 times and I never get tired of it.”
Comment:  Follow the link to see a video about this reenactment.

For more on the subject, see Williamsburg Indians Jailed, Enslaved and Shawnee Indians in Colonial Williamsburg.

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