ALN8BAL8MO: A Native Voice

Writer, storyteller, healer, athlete,
and crane operator—in many ways, Ted
Williams was an original. In other ways,
he was also the inheritor of more than
one tradition from his Tuscarora people.
Born in 1930, on the Tuscarora Reservation
near Niagara Falls, New York,
Ted’s father Eleazar Williams was a Turtle
Clan sachem and an Indian doctor whose
reputation as a healer was widely known.
His mother, Amelia Chew, served as the
Clan Mother of Ted’s own Wolf Clan.

In Memory of Carol Gregson (1925-2021)

The long, eventful,
and celebrated life of Carol Gregson has
come to a close. She died Friday morning,
November 12, 2021. Born December 2,
1925, she was 95 years old….She was known in the Adirondacks as
the “Mother of all Gregsons.” Actually,
Carol only had seven children: Kris, Eric,
Barry, Kent, Blair, Jill, and Lance (in that

In Memory of John Michael Vlach

Early in his career, John was elected as a Fellow of the American Folklore Society, a group that recognizes the field’s leading scholars. His folklore scholarship alerted academics across the social sciences and humanities to the power of cultural expression in our lives. He was especially effective in the areas of art and architecture, helping scholars and the public appreciate the significance of America’s folklife. Many of his published studies continue to be required reading for university courses.

A Tribute to John Vlach

In 1981, I began my Master’s degree in Museum Studies at George Washington University (GWU). I took an introductory course in American Studies with Pete Mondale, who assigned a book that would change my life: Black Culture and Black Consciousness by Larry Levine. When I asked Mondale where I could read more books like this, he introduced me to John Vlach, the new folklorist that the department had just hired. John had just written Charleston Blacksmith about Phillip Simmons, an African American blacksmith in Charleston. I was immediately sold on this professor, since my brother was a blacksmith and I had worked at a museum on Black women’s history in Washington, DC (The Bethune Museum) prior to starting my Master’s degree. And, then I learned what folklorists do.


The Heart Has Reasons profiles 10 rescuers with whom [the author] Klempner met, and the book’s greatest strength is that—in true folk spirit—it allows each rescuer to tell his or her own story. Klempner doesn’t filter or paraphrase anyone, and there’s no reason he should want to. After all, these are feisty, colorful individuals who defied Nazi brutality to save the lives of Jewish children. They possess unique voices, full of humor and anger and life; being able to hear each one is a privilege…