Quoted directly from the Sequoyah County Times newspaper published in Sallisaw, Oklahoma July 5, 2005:
Living Treasures Nominations Being Accepted
The Cherokee National Historical Society Inc. is accepting nominations for 2005 Cherokee Master Craftsmen, National Living Treasures.
Entry nomination application forms must be received by the Cherokee Heritage Center in Tahlequah no later than Aug. 12, Ami Maddocks, coordinator, said.
The designation of Cherokee men and women as a Master Craftsperson, National Living Treasures, originated in 1988 as a result of the Lost Arts Project. The mission that created the project remains today for the preservation and revival of Cherokee cultural practices that may be lost in the passage from one generation to another.
The project honors Cherokee men and women who have demonstrated exceptional skill and historical knowledge of a traditional Cherokee art or craft and have shown individual commitment to education and cultural preservation.
A nominated craftsperson must have practiced his or her craft for a minimum of 10 years and must have perfected the techniques utilizing all-natural, non-commercial materials and taught these skills to others. The craftsperson must be a citizen of the Cherokee Nation, Maddocks said.
The Cherokee Nation and the Cherokee National Historical Society Inc. officially designate selected individuals as Cherokee Master Craftsmen or Craftswomen National Living Treasures.
Primary emphasis will be given to those arts or crafts produced in the traditional manner using native materials. Eligible crafts include, but are not limited to gigs, bow and arrows, basketry, stone marbles, blowguns, water drums, stone and woodcarving, turtle shells, flint-knapping, stickball sticks, traditional clothing, pottery, pipe making, clay or shell jewelry, weaving and other arts.
“Since 1988 only 66 individuals have been honored as Cherokee National Living Treasures, making the award highly coveted among Cherokee artisans,” Maddocks said.
The Cherokee Heritage Center is a non-profit organization devoted to the preservation and promotion of Cherokee history and culture.
To obtain a nomination form, call the Cherokee Heritage Center at (918) 456-6007, or visit the Web site at www.CherokeeHeritage.org