Rev. James H. Wilbur was a pioneer Methodist preacher, teacher, and Indian agent. “Father Wilbur,” as he was most often called, will focus on his 22 years of work on the Yakama Indian Reservation at Ft. Simcoe. Originally assigned and hired by the Indian agent to begin a school there, he twice complained in person to President Lincoln about treatment of tribal members by Indian agents and their cronies. During his second visit to Washington, D.C. in 1864, Lincoln appointed him Indian agent, a role he kept for most of the next eighteen years.
Wilbur’s presentation will reflect on more recent news he has learned from a conversation with a professor of cultural anthropology – a field that did not exist in Wilbur’s time. He has also learned of an official apology written two decades ago by church leaders, which acknowledged damage done by missionaries in destroying tribal cultures.
James Wilbur is portrayed by Chuck Hindman.