MuskogeePhoenix.com, Muskogee, OK

Features

July 28, 2013

Artifacts come to Cherokee Casino

Cherokee Casino adds life-size horse as part of featured art display

FORT GIBSON — Cherokee Casino Fort Gibson officials recently added the final pieces to their 27,500-square-foot facility, as authentic art pieces and artifacts that portray life from the time period from 1840-1860 are installed in the entry areas.

The displays include art created by Cherokee Nation citizens.

The casino’s exterior design, resembling a fort, is reminiscent of the mid-1800s, when Cherokees were working to reestablish and rebuild the Cherokee Nation.

The theme, “Reestablishing a Republic and Reuniting as a Nation,” is carried throughout various parts of the casino, according to a media release.

The south entrance of the casino offers a glance into the past, exhibiting a United States cavalry captain’s quarters.

Standing watch outside their living quarters are the representation of an officer with his horse and an enlisted Ferrier. The cavalry captain is dressed in an authentic federal officer’s coat.

The soldier wears an authentic cavalry shell jacket. Both soldiers wear replica hats highlighting authentic insignia.

“Cherokee Casino Fort Gibson reflects a time when the U.S. War Department abandoned the fort and the property was deeded to the Cherokee Nation,” Molly Jarvis, vice president of marketing, communications and cultural tourism for Cherokee Nation Businesses, said in a media release. “Previously, the fort served as a starting point for several military expeditions that explored the West, seeking peace between the tribes in the region. It was reactivated as a military post during the Civil War. Our displays depict the military nature of Fort Gibson and a typical Cherokee homestead during that time.”

A model life-size horse stands with the pair of mannequins, fully tacked with an authentic period saddle, halter and bridle.

A mid-19th century drum, drumsticks set and military bugle with cavalry cord are also presented in the encasement.

The north casino entrance art cases display other accurate art representations of cultural items, such as Cherokee pottery, baskets and stickball sticks, all handmade by citizens of the Cherokee Nation.

In accordance with Cherokee Nation law, all eight Cherokee Casinos highlight a specific Cherokee theme, featuring art aligned with each theme throughout the properties.

The act instructs that 1 percent of the total cost of any new construction or renovation project costing $500,000 or more is set aside for procurement of artwork and artifacts historically and culturally appropriate for the facility.

Information: (918) 207-3662.

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