College Park Mayor Patrick Wojahn declared Oct. 9 to be celebrated as Indigenous Peoples’ Day in the city.
College Park proclaimed Oct. 9 as Indigenous Peoples’ Day, but this only applies to Oct. 9, 2017, Wojahn told The Diamondback.
Columbus Day will still exist as an annual federal holiday that takes place on the second Monday of October. Several cities across the United States — including Los Angeles, Denver and Phoenix — are recognizing Indigenous Peoples’ Day as well.
Before making the dedication, Wojahn gave a brief history of indigenous people in Maryland and said “the importance of our indigenous people has been diluted, lost or overlooked” throughout the years.
There used to be many tribes of indigenous people living in what is now Maryland when Europeans first came to the Americas in the 1600s, but it took until 2012 for the state to officially recognize any tribes, Wojahn said.
“The city values the many contributions of indigenous peoples that have shaped the character of our nation in the areas of labor, technology, science, philosophy, arts and culture,” Wojahn said.
CORRECTION: Due to an editing error, the excerpt of this story previously stated that College Park would celebrate Indigenous Peoples’ Day every Oct. 9. The proclamation only applies for Oct. 9, 2017. The excerpt has been updated.