Museum Moments on Thursday, March 16, at 12 noon will feature Medicine Wheel Gardens. This topic will be discussed by Tammy Greer, Ph.D., a member of the United Houma Nation, and a faculty member at the University of Southern Mississippi. She is Director of the Mississippi Center for American Indian Research and Studies and is faculty advisor of the Golden Eagles Intertribal Society.
The program will be at the Union County Heritage Museum, located at 114 Cleveland Street in New Albany. A sack lunch will be available, courtesy of the New Albany Garden Club at 11:30.
Dr. Greer developed the Medicine Wheel Garden in 2005 along with others to highlight the plants that were used by the indigenous peoples of this area, and to promote awareness of the rich histories and cultures of Southeastern Native Americans.
Programming associated with the Medicine Wheel Garden includes the many uses of native plants from natural dyes to cordage to making medicine. Greer has a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities to explore these uses.
These circular gardens are considered places for healing and tranquility. They are considered by some to be sacred spaces within certain cultures. The gardens follow simple, circular designs based around the number four for each of the four cardinal directions. Each direction represents a unique spiritual connection with the earth.
Medicine wheel gardens have been built and used for ceremonies for thousands of years. Each one has enough unique characteristics and qualities that archaeologists have not deciphered them in their entirety. One of the older wheels, located in Canada, has been dated to 3200 BCE (5200 years ago).
Museum Moments is a monthly lecture program which is free. It is made possible by the Community Partners of the museum. For more information contact the museum at 662-538-0014.
Jill Smith, Director
Union County Heritage Museum
114 Cleveland Street
New Albany,MS 38652