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Barney Circle in Southeast Washington in Washington, District of Columbia — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
 

September 11 Healing Poles

 
 
September 11 Healing Poles Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Devry Becker Jones (CC0), December 4, 2022
1. September 11 Healing Poles Marker
Inscription.  
The totem pole you see here was carved by the Lummi Nation of Washington State in remembrance of those that lost their lives during the tragic events of the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001. Located along the Ward Six 9-11 memorial path, today it also represents those interred here from twelve different American Indian tribes — most of whom died in Washington D.C. negotiating treaties or conducting business with the U.S. government.

Originally located at the Pentagon in 2004, Liberty and Freedom, are one of 3 memorial totems – Healing, located outside New York City, and Honoring located in Shanksville, PA. More than 80 people from the Lummi and other Nations helped harvest, prepare, carve and paint the healing poles.

The poles are meant to connect the past and present. While it may commemorate a tragedy or honor the dead, its power reaches beyond the loss to actually touch each viewer with the power to heal grief.

[Sidebar:]
The Symbolism in the Poles,br> The basic structure represents a house, reminding all Americans we live under
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one roof. The colors red, yellow, black and white are united in these poles representing the diversity of the United States.

The Liberty Pole depicts a female bear with a "grandmother moon" in her abdomen. The Freedom Pole depicts a male bear with "grandfather sun." The 34-foot Sovereignty Crossbar joining the latter two poles has eagles carved on each end, with two sets of seven feathers representing American Airlines Flight 77 that crashed into the Pentagon on 9/11. The female eagle symbolizes peace, and the male symbolizes war.

The poles honor those who lost their lives on 9/11, their families and men and women in uniform that gave their lives for our freedom and liberty – policeman, firemen, soldiers.

"Native people know what grief is. We know what pain and suffering is. But we also know how to put our arms around one another."
Jewell Praying Wolf James, Master Carver of the house of Tears Carvers

The Turtle
Lummi carvers of Washington State felt a spiritual call to add the turtle to the healing pole as they were carving, but did not understand why they felt called to include this symbol. During their journey, the poles made stops in nearly 40 American Indian Nations where they were prayed over and blessed by tribes.
September 11 Healing Poles and the marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Devry Becker Jones (CC0), December 4, 2022
2. September 11 Healing Poles and the marker
It was not until the end of the 4,500 mile journey across the continent when the poles were delivered into the care of the Piscataway Tribe of Maryland, and the deeper connection was revealed: the Turtle is also the Piscataway clan symbol and the Anacostia river bank was their homeland where the healing poles now reside.

[Captions:]
Peace
A male bear represents Father Sky above Grandfather Sun
Liberty
Soverignty
The eagles are symbols of courage and great vision. Held up by the strength and endurance of the bears, they remind us that as we move forward with courage as a united people, we must use our great vision to make the right choices to protect our liberty and freedom.

War
A female bear represents Mother Earth above Grandmother moon on the Turtle's shell.
Freedom

 
Erected by Lummi Nation of Washington State; Open Spaces, Sacred Places; Historic Congressional Cemetery; Capitol Hill Community Foundation.
 
Topics. This memorial is listed in these topic lists: 9/11 AttacksAnthropology & ArchaeologyChurches & ReligionNative Americans. A significant historical date for this entry is September 11, 2001.
 
Location. 38° 52.825′ N, 76° 58.793′ W. Marker
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is in Southeast Washington in Washington, District of Columbia. It is in Barney Circle. Memorial can be reached from the intersection of E Street Southeast and Potomac Avenue Southeast, on the right when traveling east. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 1631 G St SE, Washington DC 20003, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. September 11 Memorial Path (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); John Philip Sousa (about 300 feet away); Peter Perkins Pitchlynn (about 300 feet away); Lee Dittman Shapiro 1949-1987 / James T. Lindelof 1957-1987 (about 300 feet away); Barney at Bladensburg (about 400 feet away); U.S. Arsenal Explosion Memorial (about 400 feet away); a different marker also named U.S. Arsenal Explosion Memorial (about 400 feet away); The Mathew Brady Memorial (about 500 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Southeast Washington.
 
Related marker. Click here for another marker that is related to this marker. This marker has replaced the linked marker.
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on January 30, 2023. It was originally submitted on December 4, 2022, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia. This page has been viewed 122 times since then and 22 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on December 4, 2022, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia.

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Apr. 15, 2024