In the search for their roots and identity, Bobby and Jeramy Neugin had to scour all sorts of archives and museums to find out about Cherokee culture which had almost been lost after the “Trail of Tears”.
Jeramy had been very curious about his culture’s history, the past that was taken from them, and wanted to know from his grandfather. But due to the trauma and the pain his grandfather saw and felt, he was reluctant.
Eventually, after gathering information about Cherokee culture, most especially their rich stories filled with magic and colorful language, his grandfather opened up and told him bits and pieces of what he knew or remembered.
Finally, like a puzzle with no idea of the picture or how the pieces worked, we began to see it. Our culture. This museum had our clothing. This one our weapons and tools. This one our stories, another archives of interviews of Cherokee. Any gaps I had, my grandfather would fill in.
My grandfather passed away without ever seeing how far we’ve progressed with it. He never got to see us performing or that being seen by the public as conjurers or that the stories, culture and magic is seen as something good, instead of something shameful. He never got to see how this has been nothing but good for us.
(Image credit: Nikhita Singhal/Unsplash)