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Taking part in momentum building nationwide to more accurately reflect and honor United States and American Indian history regarding Christopher Columbus and the “discovery of the Americas,” the Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians Board of Directors passed Resolution 2016-160 in June 2016 in support of changing the name of the national holiday observed on the second Monday of October from Columbus Day to Indigenous Peoples Day. The resolution further officially recognizes Indigenous Peoples Day and encourages other communities across the state to do likewise.

According to recent issue of Time Magazine, a growing number of cities, states and universities opt to observe Indigenous Peoples Day over Columbus Day while one state and two city governments observe both Columbus Day and Indigenous Peoples Day.

Indigenous Peoples Day is officially celebrated in the states of Alaska, Minnesota, South Dakota and Vermont; 55 cities coast to coast from California to Maine; and three universities.

History shows Columbus did not make landfall on what is now the United States. Further, he was not the first European to find the landmasses of the Americas. He was, however, a key figure in the beginning of the European conquest of the Americas on behalf of royal European rulers and the Holy See of the Roman Catholic Church, primarily for its natural and human resources.

This year, Indigenous Peoples Day is observed today, Oct. 9, 2017.

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Photo by Ken Bosma / CC BY