Thursday, April 28, 2011


PART 1 of 3: Introduction of Mr. Ron Roberts
Dear Readers:

The following news story was brought to my attention this week. In Vermont's not too distant past, when Governor SHUMLIN was then Senator SHUMLIN, the Senator left his mark on Vermont’s history by supporting Joint Resolution No. 90, legitimizing a fake tribe called the “Mohickan Mohegans” run by self declared “Cheif Golden Eagle” Ron Roberts operating in Vermont.

Meet Mr. Ron Roberts - Guilty of submitting false documents and perjury! But legislators keep falling for this, as is evident in Vermont, where it was only a few years ago that legislators in Vermont state were huge supporters of Ron Roberts and his fabricated “Indian” nation. Cheif Golden Eagle looked like an Indian to legislators, so they didn't question.

Ron Roberts "Cheif Golden Eagle"

Please read recent news articles below:

Ulster's, NY tribal land war
County out $240K in casino quest by wanna-be tribe
By Steve Israel Times Herald-Record
Published: 2:00 AM - 04/24/11

But little did they know — or want to know — that just a few years before, Roberts — who declined comment and referred all questions to Kaplan — had pleaded guilty to fraud, for using his son's credit cards. He also tried — unsuccessfully — to join the tribes that ran the Mohegan Sun and Foxwoods casinos in Connecticut. After he formed his own tribe in 1997, he had even opened his own high-stakes bingo hall in his hometown of Granville, N.Y. — which was immediately shut by the state because, Attorney General Elliott Spitzer's office would later say, the claims the Mohegans made to prove they were a real tribe were "either false or highly misleading."

And, of course, Ulster couldn't know that in 2004, Roberts would plead guilty to filing altered documents to prove that the tribe he had created was legitimate. He had gone as far as changing the "W" (for white) on his grandfather's death certificate to "I" (for Indian), according to federal court documents and the Bureau of Indian Affairs.
No matter. If they say they're Indians…….


Another story about Mr. Roberts that you may want to read is:

Man With Flair for Reinventing Himself Goes a Step Too Far
June 3, 2004

In the annals of flimflam, surely a special place has been reserved for Ronald A. Roberts, also known as Sachem Golden Eagle of the Western Mohegans (Mohickan).

The Golden Eagle is not flying high right now. Holed up in a dilapidated Catskill resort he bought with other investors, Mr. Roberts, 56, has pleaded guilty to federal charges of submitting false documents and perjury, and is waiting be sentenced on June 17. He faces a maximum of 10 years in prison.


Sunday, April 3, 2011

A National Aboriginal Rights issue is facing all of our First Nations today. Look no further than Vermont and New Hampshire were State Recognition is threatening to change the course of history for the Abenaki Nation in our own original homelands.

State Recognition laws allow interest groups/social clubs to claim our history, claim to be our family member without recourse, claim our ancestral burial grave sights, without any credible criteria or evidence, typically to "sell crafts" as Indian made. To paraphase one quote from Vermont Nulhegan-aki (variation on made up tribe, I have also witnessed Mohican-aki) "Cheif" "like a maple syrup brand, makes it more marketable to be indian made."

An obvious out of touch and far removed from our history remark.

The Cherokee Nation (Click here to SUPPORT - Oppose Kentucky State Recognition Bills) has been the leader in educating and lobbying the general public to this serious issue facing  Indian history and Federally Recognized nations today, and one of the forefront leaders in defending their aboriginal rights against State Recognition for the Cherokee people and their history.

The Cherokee Nation struggles is a mirror image of the Vermont State Recognition laws impacting our aboriginal rights today. Most of these laws are and were enacted in Vermont with sub-standard criteria. One example; allowing for "family stories" to replace any credible or vital record that cannot be produced.

Please read below to learn more of this serious issue facing All Indian people today. You may click on the link below to read more on the Cherokee struggles currently with Kentucky and their success with combating Tennessee ill-conceieved State Recognition laws.


A battle for what it means to be an Indian tribe (3) and a struggle for benefits provided to Indians is currently being waged by groups seeking to take away the identity and benefits that have been reserved to federally recognized Indian tribes (4). Hundreds of false Indian groups are claiming to be sovereign tribes and are teaching their own fabricated culture and history as if it were Indian. They apply for and receive aid from the same sources that fund the historic treatybased obligations intended for Indians. Yet they do not measure up to the credentials required of true tribes.

Some groups are “state recognized.” Most are not. However there is no standard definition or set of requirements for what states must do to recognize tribes. Some states have no standards and simply grant recognition by resolution or executive decree. Some states have minimum requirements but these are always much more easily met than federal requirements. Otherwise groups would simply get federal recognition and not need state recognition.

Friday, April 1, 2011

Adirondack Journal — Abenaki People in the Adirondacks - Mitchell Sabattis

Dear Readers,

In August 2009 the Adirondack Museum hosted Abenaki Day. To list just a few highlights - All the participants who demonstrated their craft had a captive audience, We met many Abenaki's, it was like a family reunion! and we had alot of fun.

Please read the excellent story by one of our own members Abenaki family historian, David Benedict, and Christopher Roy, PhD candidate below who presented our history in the Adirondacks with our baskets donated (1800) by Maude Benedict whose husband was Edwin Nagazoa. A few of her baskets are at the NYS Museum as well as basket making tools. They resided in Albany as do many Abenaki people.

By Christopher Roy & David Benedict, 7 June 2009

Mitchell Sabattis, Abenaki Farmer, 1855

While most people associate Abenaki people with the Odanak reserve on the banks of the St. Francis River in Quebec, Abenaki history is just as rooted in the Adirondack Mountains.

No Abenaki has figured as prominently throughout the history of the Adirondack region as Mitchell Sabattis (1821-1906).

Famous guide and highly respected resident of Long Lake, New York, local history and old newspaper accounts are full of tales of Sabattis' impressive knowledge of the natural world, of his wealthy clients, of the deer, panthers and moose which he hunted, and of the impressive age which his father, Captain Peter, was reported to have attained.

Click here to read more



March 30, 2011

Vermont's ill-conceived approach to its indigenous people fails Vermont voters and the Abenaki people and must be reconsidered. Instead, the Vermont Senate seems intent on making matters worse.

In 2010, Vermont passed into law a "state recognition" process administered by a new commission which was intended to be composed of Native American people. However, none of the commission members can prove any Abenaki ancestry, and Chairman Willard's claims descent from the Otôdoson (Watso). A fraudulent claim by Luke Willard to our family name and has been publically disproven.

Instead, the commission members were almost entirely selected from potential applicant groups, representing real conflicts of interest which cannot be surmounted by recusal from matters directly relevant to the applicant groups to which they belong. Each commission member is committed to recognizing all four of the organizations applying for recognition this year.

Conflicts of interest are also real and apparent within the group of "experts" assembled by the commission to review applications for recognition. To date – Mr. Lacy and Mr. Skinas were chastised by their Federal agency for using letterhead against Federal policy and both were forced to stepped down, although the reviewers were allowed to pass by the Commission and Senator Illluzzi. All of the “experts” have conflicting roles and long standing relationships with these groups.

A brief summary of the real and apparent conflicts on the review panel:

• Dave Lacy has worked with members of the "St. Francis/Sokoki" in this role as Green Mountain National Forest archaeologist.
• Dave Skinas, another archaeologist and Federal employee, actually sits on the board of directors of the Abenaki Self-Help Association, Inc., a non-profit corporation run by the "St. Francis/Sokoki."
• Eloise Beil has worked with the "Elnu" in their capacity as re-enactors working for her employer, the Lake Champlain Maritime Museum.
• Fredrick Wiseman, a member of the "St. Francis/Sokoki," has collaborated with "Elnu" members at the Lake Champlain Maritime Museum and has similar relationships with other groups.
• Historian Kevin Dann does not appear to have as close a relationship with applicant groups, although his review of the "Nulhegan" application was mostly devoid of substance. He prefaced his response, however, with a set of comments about OUR ancestors, NOT those of the "Nulhegan."

There has been no adequate review of applications for state recognition. This is clear from a close reading of the public portions of the applications themselves, the reviews of the "experts" assembled by the VCNAA, and the VCNAA's report to the legislature. The applications are characterized by inaccurate information and wild leaps made to convince people that our history is theirs. It is not. The entire application process is nothing more than a grant process, with letters of support and no credible substantiated evidence, proven by the citations allowed i.e. WikiPedia, and the Internet used as “sources of evidence”. One source “Charles Partlow” ancestral proof submitted by the “Elnu”, has already been entirely overlooked and ignored by this “expert” review panel, (the previous press release is attached with documents) while we have provided the document that proves otherwise.

Faced with the truth about these applications, Sen. Illuzzi and the Senate Committee on Economic Development, Housing & General Affairs, are now considering legislation "Relating to Exempting from Public Disclosure Records Related to Tribal Recognition." As certain genealogical information has already been exempted from public review by an 11th-hour amendment to last year's law, it appears that the committee is now moving to completely remove the state recognition process from public scrutiny. The committee seeks to deprive Vermont voters and the Abenaki people of the open government, transparency and accountability that we typically expect of democratic governments.

We ask all Vermonters to stand with us in opposing the conflicts of interest and increasing secrecy of the state's recognition process, led by Senator Illuzzi, the Commission and groups seeking to defraud the State of Vermont and Abenaki Nation citizens. We ask all Vermonters to take a stand for justice, historical truth, and respect for the Abenaki people and our history.

For more information, contact:

Denise L. Watso, Abenaki First Nation