In the summer of 1920, 300 Kiowa and Comanche Indians participated in the making of a six-reel silent film titled "The Daughter of Dawn." They brought their own clothing, props and horses to the Wichita Mountains in southwest Oklahoma, and for three months shot an epic film that included a love triangle, buffalo hunting, and battle scenes. The film stars White Parker and Wanada Parker, the children of Quanah Parker. The film was screened publicly only once, and then, like many other early silent films, lost for decades. It was recently rediscovered and donated to the Oklahoma Historical Society.
In 2013, "The Daughter of Dawn" was selected for preservation in the United States National Film Registry by the Library of Congress as being “culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant.” This program will feature a short introduction, screening, and audience discussion of "The Daughter of Dawn" and its significance, both within the history of early cinema and as an important documentation of Native American life and culture in the early 20th century.
Malgorzata J. Rymsza-Pawlowska is assistant professor in the Department of History and the graduate program in historical administration. Her research and teaching interests include 19th- and 20th-century U.S. history, media history and theory, critical theory, museum studies, public history and digital humanities. Her work has appeared in the Journal of Popular Film and Television, Film & History, The Public Historian, and Technology and Culture. She is working on a manuscript on historical consciousness in the postwar U.S. At Eastern she is chairwoman of the Digital Humanities Committee at the Humanities Center. She has a Ph.D. in American studies from Brown University, and M.A. degrees in public humanities from Brown University and communication, culture and technology from Georgetown University.