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Month: July 2023

Important deadline for Brothertown Veterans: File Your PACT Act Claim by Aug. 9th

Submit Your Intent to File a Claim

The Honoring Our Promise to Address Comprehensive Toxics Act of 2022 (PACT Act) is the biggest expansion of Veteran health care and benefits in generations. VA encourages all eligible Veterans and survivors to file a claim — or submit their intent to file a claim — for PACT Act-related benefits now. If you notify VA of your intent to file before Aug. 10, 2023, you may be able to get retroactive payments to Aug. 10, 2022, when the PACT Act became law. Learn how to let VA know of your intent to file.

BIN Vetererans can find additional resources including VA links to WI, MN and Washington DC, links to all VA Benefit newsletters and more on our website by clicking here

Tuesday’s Oneida 200-Year Dedication Breakfast and the passing of the Brothertown Collection.

From our Reporter (and photographer) on the scene “Raven De”. Also in attendance was Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers and other dignitaries.

The Oneida Nation is celebrating 200 years in Wisconsin this week with many cultural activities and programs. They hosted a breakfast Tuesday’s as a kickoff to this week’s events and part of their program, spoke in length of the relationship they have with the Brothertown Indian Nation.

Many years ago, our relatives at Oneida came to our aid and took in a collection of Brothertown artifacts for safe keeping. Today was the day those items were returned home to Brothertown.

We celebrated with a ceremonial exchange of goods, including a strand of wampum, a hand carved wooden eagle feather, many bolts of calico and a jar of sacred tobacco grown from seeds given to the Nation by our ancestors on the East Coast.

Over twenty Brothertown Indians were present today to help celebrate this historic occasion. Enjoy the event from the lens of Raven De!

Return of Brothertown Collection Taking Place on July 25th as part of Oneida Nation’s Bicentennial Celebration

Mark your calendar, and plan on attending this long-awaited event at the Oneida Nation’s 200-year dedication Breakfast Event. The event will take place at the Radisson Hotel and Conference Center in Green Bay. The doors open at 7:45 a.m., and the Brothertown Indian Archival Presentation begins around 9:25, which closes out the breakfast event.

Brothertown relatives are invited to be part of the exchange and celebration of Oneida Nation’s bicentennial. BIN Chairwoman Phyllis Tousey and BIN THPO Courtney Gerzetich will be part of the event, making remarks. Many have worked tirelessly in securing and protecting the Brothertown Collection, and we hope you’ll join in on marking this special occasion, where BIN will show its gratitude to our Oneida relatives.

Brothertown and Oneida leaders gathered in 2022 to begin planning the transfer of the Brothertown Collection. Left to right front row is Oneida Councilman Kirby Metoxen, Oneida Chairman Tehassi Hill, Former Brothertown Indian Nation Chairman Bob Fowler, Oneida Treasurer Cristina Danforth, Brothertown Indian Nation Tribal Historical Preservation officer Courtney Cottrell Gerzetich, Vice Chairman Brandon Yellowbird-Stevens. In the back from left to right is Former Oneida Councilwoman Marie Summers, Oneida Secretary Lisa Liggins, and Oneida Councilman David Jordan.

In addition to the breakfast event on Tuesday, Oneida Nation has planned a full week of events to mark the bicentennial. A full schedule can be found here.

For any question email Dawn:

Calling Brothertown Students for Wild Rice Internship!

Later this month, the Brothertown Indian Nation, along with its partners in the Winnebago Wild Rice Revitalization Project, will be hosting students for a three-day immersive internship to learn about wild rice and our restoration efforts in the Lake Winnebago watershed. Interns will be provided with a stipend which covers all lodging, meals, and travel. Individuals 16 and older are eligible to participate.

This year’s experience will begin on July 23rd, and go through July 26th. For more information, please check out the schedule and details here. For those interested, contact Jessie Conaway at (608) 790-7425 or

Mayom beds growing in the Lake Poygan watershed. Photo courtesy of Jessie Conaway.

Happy Samson Occom Day!

We want to wish every member of the Brothertown Indian Nation a healthy and joyful day of remembrance for our most famous founder (one of several who were instrumental in our founding). On this day we want to offer many interesting links in honor of Samson Occom and the Brothertown tribe. This is just a small sample of what is available on the Brothertown website.

Please take a moment today and through the weekend to become engaged and involved again in learning about our heritage. Reflect on our Tribal beginnings and the centuries of sacrifice made by our Brothertown ancestors to get us to July 14, 2023. The links below are presented in honor of both Samson Occom and our tribal history:

Items to read, download, and Ponder our great ancestor whom we owe so much to

Relevant videos:

Additional Podcasts and Radio Shows:

Remembering Samson Occom

2023 marks the 300th anniversary of the birth of Samson Occom and the 4th annual tribal celebration of “Samson Occom Day” on July 14.  This Brothertown holiday was established in June of 2020 by the Nation’s Council at their monthly meeting.  The resolution, which passed unanimously, cites, in part, the Reverend Occom’s sizable role in the organization and the propagation of the Brothertown tribe.  

Samson Occom (Mohegan/Brothertown) was born in a wigwam (see right) in present day Connecticut in 1723. He converted to Christianity in his late teens, received an education through the Reverend Eleazar Wheelock and went out among his brethren with the dual intent of converting and educating them.

In December of 1765, in an effort to serve his people and answer what he felt was God’s call, Occom sailed to England to raise funds for Eleazar Wheelock’s Indian Charity School. He spent over 2 years preaching and raising money in Britain where he was well received and helped to collect, by today’s standards, the equivalent of about 2 million dollars.

When he returned to America in 1768, Occom found that Wheelock, instead of living up to his promise to care for Occom’s wife and children in his absence, had left them destitute. Later, the school he had helped to raise funds for and expected to be built in Connecticut and educate Indians, was moved to New Hampshire, and educated mainly whites. Occom felt this was a serious misuse of the funds donors had entrusted to him and a rift began between he and his mentor that never healed before Wheelock’s death.

Toward the end of his life, Occom was involved in the formation of a new tribe formed from portions of seven Native communities in New England. This new tribe began in New York on land given them by the Oneida. Occom noted in his journal entry of November 7, 1785, “…we named our town by the name of Brotherton, in Indian Eeyawquittoowauconnuck.”

Occom died on July 14, 1792, but his contributions continue to be felt to this day. His hymns are still sung, he is honored with a feast day among the Brothertown Indians and in the Episcopal Church, his numerous journals, letters, and sermons are studied in countless colleges and universities, and several Native American tribes have been helped by his writings in their re-recognition process. He was an integral part of the founding of Dartmouth College (the school created with the funds he helped raise), father of numerous descendants, and a co-founder of the Brothertown Tribe.

A few links to read in celebration of our great ancestor whom we owe so much to...