FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE FROM THE SUMMIT COUNTY HISTORICAL SOCIETY
(Akron, Ohio. September 20, 2017) The oldest landmark in Summit County – a tribute to the Native people who first settled here – will be celebrated in an educational walk on Akron’s Portage Path, Monday, October 9.
The second annual “Marking the Trail of the Portage Path,” sponsored by the Lippman School with the Summit County Historical Society will involve over 100 student participants from Lippman School, Portage Path CLC, the Northern Cheyenne Nation, and the Emmanuel Christian Academy .
The event begins at 1:00pm at Portage Path CLC, 55 S. Portage Path, and will end at the Perkins Stone Mansion, 550 Copley Road.
In 2016, students from Lippman, Portage Path CLC and the Cheyanne Nation joined together in a year-long project creating a web-based mobile “app” that provides extensive information about the Indian trail, including its history and the natural world that it traverses. The app can be accessed at www.walkportagepath.org.
“Our relationship with the Northern Cheyanne Nation has allowed us to reveal many similarities in our two cultures,” says Sam Chestnut, Head of School at Lippman. “This will be the sixth time that the Montana nation has spent time with us in October in Akron.” In alternating years, Lippman students visit the Cheyenne reservation in Montana in May.
Originally created by indigenous people who populated the area for millennia before the first Europeans arrived, the Portage Path today exists as one of the oldest, most visible landmarks on the North American continent – crossing the watershed divide between the Cuyahoga River and Tuscarawas River.
The symbolic walk will allow students from the three schools to learn more about the native people who used the portage, which was marked by the Historical Society in 1999, when for the first time, monumental sculptures at each terminus of the Path were connected over the 8-mile trail by fifty markers in the shape of historic Indian broad blades.
New signage along the path will be unveiled at the intersection of South Portage Path and Copley Road, a marker that bears a QR code directing walkers and cyclists along the path to the online app.
The ceremony will also feature traditional Northern Cheyenne drumming and singing.
The Lippman project is supported by an Educator Initiative Grant from Akron’s GAR Foundation. The walk will begin at 1 p.m. where Lippman students will be joined by young people from the North Cheyenne and Portage Path CLC students. As the walk crosses West Exchange Street, students from Emmanuel Christian will join the walk to the Perkins Mansion.
Akron police will be closing portions of South Portage Path between West Market Street and Copley Road during the time of the walk.
The public is welcome to attend.