Marianne Moore and the “Carlisle Indian School”: Preserving a Complex Legacy. A Discussion About History and Community Organizing with Sandi Cianciulli of the Carlisle Indian School Project, Rosenbach Librarian Elizabeth Fuller, Assistant Librarian Nancy Loi, and Development Associate Sara Potts.
Content Note: This episode involves discussion of physical and cultural violence against Indigenous peoples, especially Indigenous children.
Modernist poet Marianne Moore, whose papers and personal effects reside at the Rosenbach, spent an early part of her career teaching at the “Carlisle Indian Industrial School,” an institution sponsored by the United States federal government as part of a larger effort to assimilate Indigenous children into white American society. Recently, a group of activists founded the Carlisle Indian School Project (CISP) to give voice to the legacy of the children who suffered at the school—and, in many cases, overcame the challenges they faced to make positive contributions to their communities. In this episode of The Rosenbach Podcast, we are joined by one of those activists, Sandi Cianciulli, for a conversation at the Whistlestop Bookshop in busy downtown Carlisle, Pennsylvania, about her family’s connection to the school, and the work of CISP to teach contemporary Americans about the school’s complex legacy. Podcast host Dr. Alexander L. Ames also stops by the Rosenbach’s reading room to learn more about the Moore collections from Librarian Elizabeth E. Fuller and Assistant Librarian Nancy Loi.
Land Acknowledgement: With gratitude and humility, the Rosenbach Museum & Library acknowledges that it is situated on Lënapehòkink, the traditional homelands of the Lenni-Lenape peoples. A history of broken treaties, forced removals, and fraudulent agreements such as the Walking Purchase of 1737 displaced many of the Lenape people from this land, though some also remain among the continuing historical tribal communities of the region: the Nanticoke Lenni-Lenape Tribal Nation, the Ramapough Lenape Nation, the Powhatan Renape Nation, the Nanticoke of Millsboro Delaware, and the Lenape of Cheswold, Delaware. We acknowledge the Lenni-Lenape as the original people of this land and their continuing relationship with their territory. The Rosenbach strives to understand our place within a national legacy of colonization, and to act as allies to Indigenous people and their vibrant communities today, in how we engage with our collections, and the important stories they help preserve and communicate.