Reclaiming Ohi:yo'- Restoring the Altered Landscape of the Beautiful River Main MenuWelcomingFront page for this Digital Exhibit.The Seneca Nation of IndiansWe call ourselves Onödowá'ga:' (oh-non-doh-wah!-gawh!), which means "People of the Great Hill". We are one of six other nations that collectively call ourselves Hodinöhsö:ní (hoh-dee-nonh-sonh-neeh!), meaning "People of the Longhouse".Ohi:yo'Ohi:yo', our Beautiful River, has always been our home and source of nourishment.The Kinzua Dam ProjectOur elders fought for our land and sovereignty in the 1950s and 1960s. They fought to stop the construction of Kinzua Dam.The Allegheny ReservoirThe reservoir has altered the landscape, ecosystem, and our interactions with Ohi:yo.The Allegheny Reservoir: A Visual Depiction of Water LevelsAt times of water storage the water depth of the river channel is approximately 26 feet, with as little as 6 to 8 feet of water during the winter months.The Significance of Kinzua to our Seneca PeopleThe U.S. Army Corps of EngineersThe U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in collaboration with the U.S. federal government built Kinzua Dam between 1960 and 1965.Kinzua Era TimelinesThis page provides two different temporal representations of the Kinzua Era (1956-1966).Kinzua Dam's Environmental ImpactsThe creation of Kinzua Dam has had lasting environmental impacts on our land and water. Learn more here.Ohi:yo' Restoration and Resiliency ProjectsMembers of the Seneca Nation's Watershed Resources Working Group are involved in various restoration and resiliency projects for our Ohi:yo'. The Seneca Nation's Fish and Wildlife Department in particular engages in projects related to building artificial habitat, repopulating our river's Walleye population, and building trenches to help land locked fish.Seneca Nation Fish and Wildlife DepartmentThe Nation's Fish and Wildlife Department engages in restoration and resiliency projects related to Ohi:yo'.Fighting for the Water: Fracking Wastewater in Ohi:yo'In 2016 the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (PA DEP) began deliberating a 1,000-barrel/day of unconventional gas drilling wastewater (Frack Wastewater) disposal facility in Potter County proposed by Epiphany Allegheny LLC. In response to the news of these fracking plans, our Seneca people again fought for our people, our communities, and our Ohi:yo'.A Legacy of ResilienceWe will continue on.Access and Use RightsFor our full statement on rights and use of our exhibit contents see this page.Additional ResourcesThis page contains additional resources that can provide more in-depth information that is perhaps not included within our exhibit.About this ExhibitThis page contains information about our intra-Nation departmental collaborations and exhibit acknowledgements.The Seneca-Iroquois National Museum663b8929f7a99e6bad2d94d8e2c4f4c0dbfcfc0fDana Reijerkerk3c44fb85ab096c2290175e81dd4f16f0002a41e0This exhibit was published by the Seneca-Iroquois National Museum, 2018.
Letter from President John F. Kennedy to SNI President Basil Williams (pg 2 of 2)
12018-07-20T15:05:29-07:00Dana Reijerkerk3c44fb85ab096c2290175e81dd4f16f0002a41e0308614In a letter from U.S. President John F. Kennedy, Kennedy declares that he will not halt the construction of Kinzua Dam.plain2018-08-23T17:57:42-07:00Seneca Nation Archives Department2018-07-19textNAD-001-002independent sovereign nations, flood dams, gravity dams, rolled-fill dams, riversSeneca-Iroquois National MuseumengSeneca Nation Presidents', beginning with Cornelius Seneca (1956-1958), began writing to public officials in Pennsylvania, New York, and even the President of the United States in an effort to stop the construction of Kinzua Dam. In a letter from U.S. President John F. Kennedy, Kennedy declares that he will not halt the construction of Kinzua Dam. President Kennedy's reasoning, like many who supported building the dam, argued that national U.S. interests superceded that of our Seneca people. President Kennedy's remarks and stance on the issue were not unusual for this time period.image/jpegprint, electronicreformatted digitalRecord has been transformed into MODS from the original accession record. Metadata originally created in a locally modified version of qualified Dublin Core.languageOfCataloging authority = "iso639-2b"; dcTerm:languagerecordCreation Date encoding = "w3cdtf"; dcTerm:datesubject authority = "aat";dcTerm:subjectsubject authority = "tgn"; dcTerm:coveragedateCreated encoding= "w3cdtf"; dcTerm:temporalAllegany Reservation, Allegany (county), Pennsylvania (state), Warren (county), Allegany RiverThis record was created by Dana Reijerkerk.President John F. Kennedy2 pages1961-08-09Dana Reijerkerk3c44fb85ab096c2290175e81dd4f16f0002a41e0
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12018-08-08T17:33:47-07:00Dana Reijerkerk3c44fb85ab096c2290175e81dd4f16f0002a41e0"Silent" ProtestsDana Reijerkerk18In the 1950s and 1960s our elders protested Kinzua Dam through publications, legal action, and symbolic protests. On August 12, 1961 a small group of Quakers, the self-proclaimed Treaty of 1794 Committee and some of our Seneca people gathered in Kinzua, Pennsylvania for a silent vigil in protest of the dam.plain2018-08-23T15:10:55-07:00Dana Reijerkerk3c44fb85ab096c2290175e81dd4f16f0002a41e0
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12018-08-08T17:32:43-07:00President to President Correspondence9Seneca Nation Presidents during the Kinzua Era (1956-1966) were involved in a public media campaign to stop the loss of our lands. Seneca Nation President Basil Williams wrote to U.S. President John F. Kennedy. President Kennedy wrote back on August 9th, 1961. This is his reply.plain2018-08-23T15:08:06-07:00
Seneca Nation Presidents during the Kinzua Era (1956-1966) were involved in a public media campaign to stop the loss of our lands. Seneca Nation President Basil Williams wrote to U.S. President John F. Kennedy. President Kennedy wrote back on August 9th, 1961. This is his reply.
The Merrill Bowen Letter
The Seneca people living on the Seneca Nation's Allegany Territory were not the only ones directly affected by building Kinzua. The Cornplanter Grant located in Pennsylvania was also inundated, leaving Chief Cornplanter's heirs without their communities, their homes, their land. In 1963, Merrill Bowen, the Cornplanter Indian Landowners Corporation, wrote a public appeal to President Kennedy asking for help relocating the Cornplanter Cemetery and Monument.