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The History Center blog shares research and findings about local history, excerpts from the History Center Archives, information about upcoming exhibits and other opportunities on how to get involved with The History Center in Tompkins County. To learn more or view the archival materials mentioned, visit us in downtown Ithaca, follow us on social media @TompkinsHistory, or subscribe to our monthly newsletter History Happenings

Tompkins County Historical Commission - Gayogo̱hó:nǫɁ Signs Added to "Cayuga Street" in Ithaca, Trumansburg, & Groton

Thu, August 10, 2023 1:29 PM | Anonymous

Tompkins County Historical Commission - Gayogo̱hó:nǫɁ Signs Added to "Cayuga Street" in Ithaca, Trumansburg, & Groton

While out walking or driving in Tompkins County in recent weeks you may have  noticed new purple signs spelling out "Gayogo̱hó:nǫɁ" (pronounced Guy-uh-KOH-no) beneath the Cayuga St. signs in Ithaca, Trumansburg, and Groton. Gayogo̱hó:nǫɁ is the non-anglicized pronunciation of "Cayuga", what the Indigenous peoples of Tompkins County have called themselves for millennia. There has been a growing effort among historical groups across Tompkins County to shift away from the outdated term of Iroquois to Haudenosaunee, and in recent years from "Cayuga Indians" to Gayogo̱hó:nǫɁ to respect the language, culture, and people that pre-date Euro-colonial settlement in the region we now call Tompkins County.

The street sign project was a multi-year collaboration of the Tompkins County Historical Commission, which is a coalition of various community groups, non-profits, individuals, and municipal entities which formed in 2017 to celebrate Tompkins County's bicentennial.

The History Center was one collaborator involved in the project, and we have been on our own internal path of improving awareness and representation of the Indigenous history of our region through our exhibits, events, programming, and consistent use and education around our use of Gayogo̱hó:nǫɁ vs. Cayuga. Learn more about the terms, spellings, and pronunciation currently in use by Indigenous language keepers here: The History Center in Tompkins County - Land Acknowledgement

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Gayogo̱hó꞉nǫˀ Territory


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