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Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Vermont Senate (Vincent Illuzzi & Company) Attempts to SILENCE Abenaki Voices:

From: "Denise L. Watso, NY" ab8naki@earthlink.net
Date: February 2, 2011 3:03:27 PM EST
To: ab8naki@earthlink.net
Cc: "'Jacques T. Watso'" jackowatso@hotmail.com, "'Richard Bernier'" richard-bernier@peoplepc.com
Reply-To: ab8naki@earthlink.net

February 2, 2011

On January 25, 2011, Sen. Vince Illuzzi invited Richard Bernier, Denise Watso, and Jacques Thériault Watso, representatives of the Abenaki people, to testify before the Senate Committee on Economic Development, Housing & General Affairs regarding S.10 and S.11. These bills would extend official state recognition to two applicant organizations who claim to be Abenaki, a position which is not supported by the evidence.

On January 31, 2011, the Senate Committee on Economic Development, Housing & General Affairs informed Mr. Bernier that it had rescinded its invitation - only Vermont residents would be allowed to provide "direct oral testimony."

This attempt to silence the Abenaki people is in direct opposition to Abenaki history and to our aboriginal rights. Some of us have our primary residence in Vermont, and many others live in Quebec, New York, Massachusetts, Connecticut, New Hampshire and elsewhere. However, Vermont has been part of our homeland for thousands of years. We will not abandon our nationhood - something much larger than one state - because legislators are scared to hear from the true indigenous people of the Champlain Valley, the Green Mountains, the Connecticut River and the shores of Lake Memphramagog.

What are they so afraid of? Why must they attempt to silence our voices, and deny us our aboriginal, civil, and human rights? Why can't they look us in the eyes and hear our voices as we speak in defense of the truth of Abenaki history and the need for justice and respect? What are they so afraid of?

For more information, contact:

Richard Bernier, Liaison, Abenaki First Nation

Denise L. Watso, Liaison, Abenaki First Nation

Jacques Thériault Watso, Councillor, Abenaki First Nation

LINK: http://reinventedvermontabenaki.blogspot.com/2009/12/odanak-band-council-letter-august-16.html
August 26, 2002
Hanouver, New Hampshire

To whom it may concern:

It has been brought to my attention that your college has documents and/or tapes of our abenaki language. There are people who are fraudulently representing themselves as Abenaki and who wish to extract these records for their own gain. One person in particular, Mr. Paul Pouliot, who claims to be of Abenaki descendance, but cannot prove it.

These records were taken from Odanak many years ago and should not find their way into the wrong hands.

I am sending this letter with my designated representative, Mr. Richard Bernier, who is an Enrolled member of the Odanak reserve. He is also speaker for our Odanak Abenakis' of Vermont.

As a First Nation's People, we wish to preserve our culture for our own children and have artifacts, language records and anything else that your college may have, NOT be allowed to stray into the wrong hands.

Gilles O'Bomsawin, Chief
of the Odanak Band Council
September 25, 2002
Richard Bernier
Odanak Abenaki's of Vermont
35 Abenaki Drive
Newport, Vermont

Kwai, Richard,
In the past six (6) months, it has been brought to our attention that fraudulent means are being used to gain access to Monies, Grants, etc. ... that should be going to Native Americans. This is happening in the United States by people using OUR Abenakis name and Heritage to make these false claims.
We, the Odanak Band Council, are asking you and your Council in Vermont to look into this matter for us. We find it very unethical that even your State and Federal Governments would allocate funds to these parties without positive proof that they ARE of Native American ancestry. It is hard enough in these troubled times for those of us who ARE First Nations People to deal with Governments, without intrusion from those who wish to play Indian.
We ask that you invistigate these matter in any way you deem necessary, even if you need assistance from AIM (American Indian Movement) in order to bring the truth out about those people who continue to exploit OUR Abenaki Culture and Heritage in a false manner. This includes the making and selling of crafts, CD's etc. that are NOT made by Native Americans who are status natives. I understand you have a federal law in the United States that prohibits this, but your Government does nothing to enforce it.
Please contact me, so we may set up a meeting date on these important issues.
Wli wni,
Gilles O'Bomsawin, Chief
Odanak Abenaki Reserve
Resolution De Bande d'Odanak/ Odanak Band Resolution
#Chronologique GOB-046003-04.
Dated September 29, 2003
Province de: Quebec.

Decide, par les presentes:
"While we recognize that the Band Councils of Odanak and Wolinak issued resolutions in 1976 and 1977 recognizing the St. Francis/ Sokoki Band of Abenakis as a group of Abenakis living in the United States, we also recognize that these resolutions were not based on any genealogical or historical evidence linking these "St. Francis/Sokoki" to our Abenaki and Sokoki ancestors.

We also recognize that the number of organizations claiming to being Abenaki in the United States and in Canada has increased greatly since that time, again without genealogical and historical evidence presented to this Council.

Therefore, we resolve that the Couseil de Band d'Odanak does not recognize at this time any organizations claiming to be Abenaki First Nations in the United States or Canada, with the exceptions of our brothers and sisters at Wolinak and Penobscot. We, of course, also recognize our fellow Wobanaki First Nation- the Passamaquoddy, Malecite and Mi'kmaq.

We further resolve that organizations claiming to be Abenaki and particularly their leadship, are invited to send their genealogical and historical documentation to the Conseil de Bande d'Odanak, so that we might review the information to assess whether or not there is any truth to their genealogical claims.

Let it be resolved, that Chief Gilles O'Bosawin sent letters to the Conseil de Bande di Wolinak, to the Penobscot nation and to the Grand Conseil de la Nation Waban-aki, encouraging them to pass similar resolutions."
Quorum (3)
Chef Gilles O'Bomsawin
Clement Sadaques, Conseiller
Michel Hannis, Conseiller
Eddy O'Bomsawin, Conseiller
Denis Gill, Conseiller.

IF these "Abenaki" incorporation's of Vermont and New Hampshire are indeed "Abenakis" then WHY are these "Abenaki" Corporations so hesitant to show and provide their genealogical connection(s) to the Historical Abenaki People, to the VT Legislature and the Vermont Public?
HIDING their genealogical connection(s) of their ALLEGED and REINVENTED Abenaki Ancestor's because as a majority, these "Abenaki" incorporation's claiming to be Abenaki Tribes and or Abenaki Bands, are nothing of the sort; thus these groups have to hide their genealogies and "sensitive" information, because if these groups did not redact their lies and distortions, the TRUTH would be known to the Vermont Public just what a fraudulent scam is really going on with this "VT Indigenous Alliance of Alleged and Reinvented Abenakis".

Burlington Free Press Article Regarding the Legal Situation of April St. Francis-Merrill

Prominent Abenaki leader
accused of exploiting vulnerable adult
April St. Francis Merrill, chief of the Missisquoi Abenaki tribe based in Swanton, is facing a charge of exploitation of a vulnerable adult by manipulating his financial records, the Franklin County Sheriff’s Department said Wednesday.
Merrill, 42, of Highgate is due for arraignment March 14 in Vermont Superior Court in St. Albans on the felony charge, Sheriff Robert Norris said.
Attempts to reach Merrill were unsuccessful Wednesday afternoon.
Norris said "several thousands of dollars" were involved during a 4½ year period involving bank and credit-card accounts while Merrill was taking care of the financial business of an elderly man.
Norris said his office received a complaint last summer from Adult Protective Services about "what appeared to be some suspicious activity in his personal bank account."
Norris said the call came into the sheriff’s office because it patrols Highgate. He said during the past several months Detective Kevin Bushey conducted the investigation, which wrapped up Tuesday when he issued Merrill the court citation.
Franklin County State’s Attorney Jim Hughes, who will be responsible for prosecuting the charge, also could not be reached for comment.
Contact Mike Donoghue at 660-1845 or mdonoghue@burlingtonfreepress.com

Franklin County, Vermont Sheriff Norris is actually a cousin relation to April St. Francis-Merrill. She is a 4th cousin once removed of Robert Wayne Norris. Her mother, Patsy Partlow-St. Francis (the late Homer Walter St. Francis Sr.'s wife) is 3rd cousin twice removed of Robert Wayne Norris. Sheriff Robert Wayne Norris (who signed the legal papers against April Merrill) is a descendant of Almeda (nee: Covey) Norris > Almeda's father was Stephen Covey > Stephen Jr.'s mother was  Elizabeth Jane (nee: Partlow) Covey > Elizabeth's parents were James Partlow and Eleanor "Lany" Van Dyke.
Elizabeth's sibling was Charles Henry Partlow, who is mentioned in the Office of Federal Acknowledgment. Some in April's "St. Francis/Sokoki group inc.'d" claim he (the Partlow line) was an Abenaki. April's mother, Patsy St. Francis, is a Partlow descendant through her father. I have yet to verify that or review ANY clear and convincing documentary evidence documentarily or otherwise of that assumption that he, Charles Henry Partlow (or any of his family) were "Abenakis".
Yet, I do wonder if this Sheriff Robert Wayne Norris of Franklin County, Vermont knows of his relationship to April St. Francis-Merrill? If he does, I ponder whether he has a Inc. St. Francis-Sokoki Band Membership Card issued by either the late "Grand Chief" Homer St. Francis Sr, the late "Tribal Judge" Michael Delaney or from "Chief" April A. (St. Francis) Merrill stuck in his wallet? I also doubt it, that April's Membership Card or Chief-li-ness would be "cut in two" with a pair of sissors, because she has now been charged with a felony; and what will happen when she is possibly convicted of such charge, in a court of law? Will Dr. Frederick Matthew Wiseman Ph.D take over and assume the Chief-li-ness position of the incorporation or will "Chief" Donald Warren Stevens Jr. assume the position for both Nulhegan Inc. and the St. Francis/Sokoki Inc. group(s)? It does make one wonder. I know the late Homer St. Francis Sr. was a felon, and he didn't loose his 'status' in having his "Plastic Card" cut in two by his "Tribal Judge" ... I guess since he was in charge (as is his daughter April) the rules and regulation's only APPLY to OTHER PEOPLE, holding their created Plastic Abenaki Membership Cards to their incorporations? Just something for people to think about....April A. (nee; St. Francis) Rushlow - Merrill is accused of allegedly manipulating his (the "elderly man") financial records" quote...

What other FINANCIAL RECORDS has this "Chief" of this Incorporation manipulated? Gaining funding yearly, from the Department of Education, the Department of Labor, and the Department of Agriculture? What else has she been "hiding"?! I think it is about time someone in the Judicial and I.R.S. Agencies actually INVESTIGATE and PROSECUTE this organization and ANYONE who was involved in it, for any possible criminal activities that have happened. Isn't the Sheriff "cousin" to April Merrill? It would seem that "someone" or some persons "close to her" has been covering up a lot of "dirt" for Mrs. Merrill in years past and recently! That just my opinion and thinking on the matter. No, I am not trying to imply or infer that Sheriff Norris has been or is "protecting" April Merrill but someone has been, to my thinking. It's the opinion of many people, that it was "just a matter of time" before this "Chief" and her cronies were exposed for what's REALLY truthfully been happening. And what has been not so truthfully been going on, for years. It's been going on for years, this "Abenaki" Identity Theft Scheme. Their Shell Game shifting around of Grant Funding monies to benefit a select few families and or person's, within each of these incorporation's. What about Jeffrey Benay and his "involvement" with Title VII Indian Education funding? He supported and allied with April Merrill for MANY years; and how about all the person(s) who did the organization's financial records too, right along side April Merrill?

MAYBE this is why Frederick Matthew Wiseman Ph.D caters to these other Inc.'d organizations (EL-NU, NULHEGAN, KOASEK), "getting distance from April Merrill" ... simply to keep himself and his "Indian" "Abenaki Scheme" going, KNOWING full well what April Merrill has been doing and she became a liability to him, as well as to Donald W. Stevens Jr. as well? As one would say, "jump from one incorporation to another, like as if it were a ship sinking". Recently I received this photograph of Frederick M. Wiseman PhD by email....
Frederick Matthew Wiseman Ph.D
of the
St. Francis - Sokoki Band of the
"Abenaki Nation"
No matter what his Johnson State College Students
created for him to wear....
the "BS Filter" works!
The good Professor is NOT "who he presents himself to be"
He is not "who he claims to be either"
He supported and supports April A. St. Francis-Merrill
with this concocted and confabulating
"VT Indigenous Alliance"
"birds of a feather, flock together"

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