Heard Museum Reopens Boarding School Exhibition

Native American boarding school exhibit at Heard Museum in Phoenix
Courtesy of Heard Museum

One of Arizona's best-known museums has updated and reopened a permanent exhibition on Native Americans impacted by federally operated boarding schools.

The Heard Museum exhibition, previously called Remembering Out Indian School Days: The Boarding School Experience, reopened February 23 as Away From Home: American Indian Boarding School Stories. The revamped exhibition, the Heard Museum said in a press release, tells "the complex and emotional stories of those whose lives were impacted" by the U.S. government's boarding school system.

The practice, prevalent during the 19th and early 20th centuries, aimed to assimilate Native American students into American society by removing them from their families and putting them in distant residential schools.

Janet Cantley, the Heard's curator, said the installation was originally planned to last five years when it opened in 2000, but visitor response was so positive that it's remained at the museum since then.

The updated exhibition features works of art, archival materials and first-person interviews in an immersive setting, the museum said. To learn more, visit the museum's website.

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