Indigenous Heritage Day at Historic St. Mary’s City – September 10, 2022

September 6, 2022

Photo by Drew Shuptar-Rayvis (Pekatawas Makatawai’U “Black Corn”)

Join Historic St. Mary’s City (HSMC) for Indigenous Heritage Day from 10 a.m.—4 p.m. on Saturday, September 10, 2022. The annual event will be filled with ongoing demonstrations in the Woodland Indian Hamlet exhibit area of the outdoor museum. Indigenous Heritage Day will be a culturally enriching family event for all ages and a perfect way to spend a Saturday afternoon!

Not to be missed is the performance by Mark Tayac and the Piscataway Nation Singers & Dancers. From Tayac Territory (Port Tobacco, MD), “Mark Tayac travels with the Piscataway Nation Singers & Dancers presenting a colorful, educational and entertaining pow wow-style event featuring American Indian Dance, Drum & Song that tells of American Indian history, culture, and traditions.” Participate and join hands in the American Indian Dance & song session that’s interactive for community members of all ages.

An exciting new addition this year will be Drew Shuptar-Rayvis and his program “Eight Coats, Seven Shirts, Fifteen Fathom Wampum: Early Colonial Settlement and the First Deeds.” This program is meant for ages eight through adult. Drew Shuptar-Rayvis will be onsite from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m., with demonstrations and discussions taking place throughout the day.

His program will include topics such as: the interconnected relationships between the Dutch, Swedes, English and Algonkian peoples in their respective regions/colonies; the adaptation of Native American life to European settlement and trade goods, including the importance and use of wampum through this critical period along the Atlantic and mid-Atlantic regions (south western CT to MD); the magnitude of the earliest American culture clashes through customs of war, adoption, captivity, alliance, friendships and marriages between Natives, Europeans and Africans; the discrepancies in the concepts of land ownership and usage; and the overshadowed early colonial conflicts: the Peach War, Kieft’s War, King Phillip’s War and King William’s War.

Indigenous Heritage Day will take place outdoors, rain or shine, from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. on Saturday, September 10. All activities will take place near the Woodland Indian Hamlet exhibit on Historic St. Mary’s City museum grounds.

Museum guests will also have the opportunity to learn the skills needed to make stone and bone tools, corn husk dolls, leather bags, hide tanning, pottery, prepare food, and wampum making will be demonstrated throughout the day.

Cost: $10 adult; $9 seniors; $6 youth (6-18); and free for those 5 years and younger and museum members).

Admission includes access to special activities.

Admission for the day will be available to purchase at The Shop at Farthing’s Ordinary (47414 Old State House Road) or the HSMC Visitor Center (18751 Hogaboom Lane, St. Mary’s City, Md 20686)


Drew Shuptar-Rayvis (Pekatawas Makatawai’U “Black Corn”) holds a cum laude Bachelor of Arts in Anthropology and Sociology from Western Connecticut State University and a Certificate Degree in Archaeology from Norwalk Community College. A true American of the mid-Atlantic region, his family includes indigenous Pocomoke heritage, Pennsylvania Dutch, Welsh, Swiss,English, Scots-Irish, Boyko Ukrainian and Ashkanazi Jewish, he honors all of his ancestors as a practicing living historian and regularly participates in colonial era reenactments, interpretations and public educational events. He has studied the reading of Wampum and works diligently in the research and preservation of the Eastern Woodland languages, particularly Renape and Mahican and is educated in the many European languages at use in the Colonial Period. He was the first garden manager of Western Connecticut State University’s Permaculture Garden, and practices Native horticulture. In July 2021 Drew was elected by his Paramount Chief Norris Howard Senior and Vice Chief Norris Howard Jr. as Cultural Ambassador of the Pocomoke Indian Nation of Maryland.

Photo by Drew Shuptar-Rayvis (Pekatawas Makatawai’U “Black Corn”)