A dandelion, or gúlkìñà:dàu (gool-keeñ-ah-daw) in the language of the Kiowa Tribe, glows in the sunset at Carnegie Lower Park in Carnegie, Oklahoma. The wildflower, which can be used for food, medicine and dye, sheds its golden petals once the warmer temperatures of spring and summer arrive, giving way to exposed seeds. Folklore has it that if you make a wish and blow off all the seeds in a single breath, your wish will come true.
Derral Davis fishes at the Carnegie Dam, an old hydroelectric dam on the Washita River in Carnegie, Oklahoma. “It’s been several years back, but I once caught a 42-pound flathead on that west side of the dam off the top of that wall,” Davis says. “That’s why I keep coming back here."
Nana Manson, of Blue Gap, Arizona, and her granddaughter WynterRose McReeves, of Tohatchi, New Mexico, wait with other dancers for the grand entry, before the start of the Southern Ute Indian Tribe Powwow and Bear Dance in Ignacio, Colorado. Native American dancers from all over the United States come together every year to dance into the powwow together.
American Indians gather in a gym at the American Indian Center in Minneapolis, Minn. for a powwow honoring people who were adopted or fostered in non-native homes. Many of those adopted and fostered people, including those who are now adults, attended the powwow, which was held in early November. A large number of American Indian children were adopted out of their communities until 1978, when the federal Indian Child Welfare Act created guidelines for placing those children and gave American Indian tribes the chance to handle those cases within their own court systems.
Contestants in the Porcupine Labor Day Annual Pow Wow enter an arena for their event. The pow wow, a term used in Native American communities for a social gathering that involves competitive dancing, was held in early September in the Porcupine district of the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation, where the Oglala Sioux Tribe, traditionally known as the Oglala Lakota Nation, is based. The contestants’ identifying tags include the phrase “Stand Together Against the Pipeline,” in reference to the controversial Dakota Access Pipeline. The Standing Rock Sioux Tribe, based in North Dakota, is leading a major effort among environmentalists and Native Americans from around the U.S. to block construction of that pipeline.
Women participating in the KWESTRONG Triathlon in Minneapolis, a city in the midwestern U.S. state of Minnesota, smudge themselves with sage, sweet grass and other traditional medicines before the event begins. About 180 women canoed 3 miles, biked 9 miles, and completed a 5k or 10k run around Lake Calhoun on Aug. 21. In Dakota, the language of the indigenous tribe native to this area, this lake was originally called “Bde Maka Ska,” which translates to “White Earth Lake.” The event is intended to promote indigenous womens’ wellness.
Eli Tail, Sr., an elder member of the Lakota community, rests in the shade near the White River Visitor Center at Badlands National Park, a portion of which is within the boundaries of the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation. The Oglala Sioux Tribe, the Lakota community that is headquartered on the reservation, worked for years with the U.S. government to establish a tribal national park from a piece of the existing park. Those efforts sputtered in recent years after ongoing disputes between the tribe and the National Parks Service.
Visitors walk through the entrance to the National Historic Landmark of Wounded Knee on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation, located within the U.S. state of South Dakota. Summertime brings many people to Wounded Knee, where, in 1890, U.S. troops surrounded then massacred between 150 and 300 Lakota people. Violence erupted there again nearly a century later in 1973, when armed members of the American Indian Movement (AIM) occupied a trading post to demand tribal sovereignty, an overhaul of tribal leadership and other changes.
A member of the Oglala Lakota Nation, an indigenous group in the U.S., tells Bernie Sanders about his experience with a lack of effective health services on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation, located within the U.S. Sanders, a U.S. senator from Vermont and a candidate for the Democratic party’s nomination for U.S. President, hosted a community meeting there on May 12 in advance of a June 7 primary election in South Dakota, the state that now encompasses much of Lakota people’s traditional homelands. The meeting began with presentations by tribal leaders and representatives before Sanders took to the podium to discuss issues including poverty, job creation and health.