I visited the North Carolina Museum of History on May 1st, 2010. The Community and Culture: North Carolina Indians Past and Present exhibit featured on the third floor featured tribes from all over North Carolina. The exhibit concerned how tribes maintain their culture. It was interesting to see how various tribes are preserving their culture in artistic forms such as pottery. In addition, there was also a video showing the Cherokee sport, stick ball.
However, as the largest tribe in the state, there was very little information on the Lumbees. In particular, I remember that they were featured on a map of the state tribes and there was a picture of a house in the Lumbee community. Some may argue that the Lumbee have very little or no culture to preserve, but I beg to differ. For example, we have the Lumbee patch work which serves as a reminder that Lumbees are a people of the pines. The pre-Civil War turpentine industry in Robeson County provided a lively hood for Lumbees. In addition, the swampy wooded land (with many pine trees) has been said to be a contributor to the isolation of the Lumbee’s ancestors that allowed them to survive during colonial times.
Nevertheless, I as an American Indian of the Lumbee tribe, I think that it is wonderful that the North Carolina Museum of History features an exhibit on the Indians in North Carolina. The exhibit lets people of the state know that American Indians are still here and we are distinct within our tribal communities.