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Norrgard Anishinaabe Collection Waasa Inaabidaa Archives

 Collection — Multiple Containers
Identifier: 1378

Scope and Contents

The collection contains video interviews and transcripts, scenic video footage, and dramatic re-enactment video footage for production of a six-part public television documentary about the history and culture of Anishinaabe Ojibwe people titled Waasa Inaabida: We Look In All Directions that aired in 2001. One topic is featured in each of the six parts. Each part is structured on interviews with tribal elders, historians, entrepreneurs, scholars, and leaders from the nineteen Great Lakes Ojibwe Bands of Michigan, Wisconsin, and Minnesota. The documentary was directed and produced by Lorraine Norrgard, written by James M. Fortier, edited by Chris Bacigalupo, with assistant direction/post-production supervision by Thomas Selinski, and primary research by Lyz Jaakola, narrated by Winona LaDuke, soundtrack by composer Peter Buffett, artistic design by Nick and Charlotte Hockings. The documentary was a production of PBS eight, WDSE-TV, Duluth, Minnesota, and produced in association with The Aboriginal People’s Television Network.

DVDs of the six part finished documentary are available at the circulation desk in the Kathryn A. Martin Library  DVD E99.C6 O3 2002

The oral history interviews below have been digitized and are available, with transcripts, through the Minnesota Digital Library.

Oral History Interview and Transcripts, selected

Amik O'Gaabaw (Larry Smallwood)

Anangookwe (Marlene Stately)

Dan Jones - 1

Dan Jones - 2

Delores "Dee" Bainbridge

George Dick

Gi Mi Wun (Raining Boyd)

Keller Papp

Makoons (Ole Nickaboine)

Makoons (Oliver Benjamin) and Zhaawanigiizhigookwe (Millie Benjamin)

Margaret "Sweet Pea" Big George

Naawigiizis (Jim Clark)

Waagosh (Anton Treuer) - 1 Waagosh (Anton Treuer) - 2

Wilf Cyr


  • Creation: 1999-2001


Conditions Governing Access

Open for use in the Kathryn A. Martin Library, Archives and Special Collections.

Conditions Governing Use

This collection may be protected by the Copyright Law of the United States (Title 17, U.S. Code). It is the user's responsibility to verify copyright ownership and to obtain all necessary permissions prior to the reproduction, publication, or other use of any portion of these materials. Researchers may quote from the collection under the fair use provision of the copyright law.

Biographical / Historical

Lorraine Norrgard lives in Cloquet, Minnesota, near the Fond du Lac Ojibwe Reservation. Norrgard grew up in the Chicago and the Lac du Flambeau, Wisconsin area and received her BFA in filmmaking from the University of Illinois and an MA in educational communications from the University of Hawaii. She worked abroad as a United Nations communications program officer, developing cross-cultural educational media for the Asia Region based in Bangkok, Thailand. She also worked in Germany for Westdeutche Rundfunk Fernsehen as a producer/director.

Norrgard spent 20 years as a documentary filmmaker focusing on Native American subjects as well as other historical topics independently and for Duluth public television. From 1998-2000 at WDSE TV, Duluth-Superior Area Educational Television Corporation, a PBS affiliate, she completed six Ojibwe programs for the television’s station’s half-hour Album series: "George Morrison Reflections," "Wild Rice Harvest I & II," "Traditional Ojibwe Ice Fishing," "Honoring the Maple Sugar," "Eastman Johnson's Ojibwe Portraits," and "Indian Princess Demystified." Other award winning titles by Norrgard include "Enduring Ways of the Lac du Flambeau People” and "A Gift to One, A Gift to Many-James Jackson Sr., Ojibwe Medicine Man" that won the Best Documentary award in the New York American Indian Film Festival and was shown at Lincoln Center.

In 1997 Norrgard received a fellowship from the American Film Institute’s Directing Workshop for Women where she completed the drama, “Looks Into the Night” that won numerous awards. In 2000, a Jerome Foundation grant placed Norrgard in Russia, Sweden, and Finland for a month exploring the use and the meaning of the birch tree in different cultures in comparison to the Anishinaabeg birch. Norrgard produced and directed the six-part documentary series on the Great Lakes Ojibwe, Waasa Inaabidaa—We Look In All Directions. It won the Best Documentary Award and Producer's Award at the 2002 San Francisco American Indian Film Festival as well as five regional Emmy Awards from the Upper Midwest Chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. The series also won the Spirit Award and Documentary Feature Award at the Milwaukee Indian Summer Festival. The series was aired nationally and internationally on American Public Television Network, and the Canadian Aboriginal Peoples Television Network and included a book, website, music CD, and teacher guides.

Lorraine Norrgard states, ”I conducted all the interviews myself in the documentaries and always began with the respectful offering of asemaa [tobacco] to Ojibwe interviewees. I have received three Ojibwe names from Ojibwe elders and have lived near Ojibwe communities since 1978 in Lac du Flambeau and actively participated in local events and volunteer activities making many friends and building trust cross culturally.”

More recent titles by Norrgard include, “Mikwendaagoziwag-The Sandy Lake Tragedy,” “Four Seasons of the Ojibwe children’s series,” and “Carl Gawboy Portrait-The Art of the Everyday.” Norrgard has worked for the Madeline Island Museum on Anishinaabeg programs since 2010.


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Language of Materials



Contains video interviews and transcripts, scenic video footage, and dramatic re-enactment video footage for production of a six-part public television documentary about the history and culture of Anishinaabe Ojibwe people titled Waasa Inaabida: We Look In All Directions that aired in 2001.

Physical Location

This collection is located at the University of Minnesota Duluth Archives. For more information about this collection or to make an appointment, contact us at or 218-726-8526.

Guide to the Norrgard Anishinaabe Collection Waasa Inaabidaa Archives
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Collecting Area Details

Contact The University of Minnesota Duluth Archives and Special Collections Collecting Area

Kathryn A. Martin Library
University of Minnesota Duluth
416 Library Drive
Duluth MN 55812-3001
(218) 726-8526