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Kids will learn how art played a role in the Lewis & Clark Expedition at “Artful Encounters” from 1 to 2 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 13 at the Sioux City Lewis & Clark Interpretive Center. Admission, craft materials and treats will be free.

Lewis & Clark encountered Native people who created “pictographs” on buffalo hides to record the most important events of the year. Kids will see how the Center honors that tradition with its mural “Encounters,” created by Ho-Chunk artist Henry Payer Jr. (Winnebago Tribe of Nebraska).

Payer’s mural portrays various encounters along the Missouri River during the time of the Lewis & Clark Expedition. He shows buffalo roaming in what is now western Iowa. He depicts Native people encountering one another through hunting, trading and traveling; courtship, war and reconciliation. He illustrates Lewis & Clark trying to broker a peaceful meeting between the Otoe-Missouria and Omaha tribes to further American trade interests.

“Kids will then create their own pictographs to record important people and events in their lives,” says Sara Olson, the Center’s History Education Coordinator.

Participants also will learn how Lewis & Clark sometimes drew pictures to supplement their written journal accounts. Many explorers who came after Lewis & Clark brought artists with them or were themselves artists who drew pictures to record encounters with Native cultures.

For more information about “Artful Encounters,” call Olson at 712-224-5242.