The fact that Senator Elizabeth Dole did not get re-elected this year came as a surprise to many in the Robeson County area of North Carolina, and left several wondering about the fate of the Lumbee Tribe's efforts to obtain full federal recognition. Elizabeth Dole sponsored and supported the Lumbee Recognition Act. If the act, which is waiting to go up before the full Senate, is not voted on before Senate adjourns, it will end up back where it started. Dole's successor, Kay Hagan, says she does support the Lumbee Recognition Act.
A yearly trip to southeastern Georgia was scheduled for November 21-23, 2008, to honor the Lumbee/Croatan Indians who moved to the area in the late nineteenth century to work in the turpentine industry. A ceremony was planned at the Croatan Indian Memorial Cemetery on the Wiregrass Plantation in Georgia. The trip will include a flower/devotional service and a chance to tour the city and surrounding area.
"Annual pilgrimage scheduled to Indian cemetery in Georgia." Robesonian November 5, 2008.
It seems that the counties in North Carolina that need the most help from the Education Lottery aren't receiving it. Robeson County has 41 percent of its school age children at or below the poverty level. Even with these numbers, Robeson is only 22nd in term of the amount of money per dollar spent on education. The North Carolina Education Lottery was $100 million short of the $425 million it was projected to raise the first year.
"Cumberland is playing [North Carolina education] lottery." Fayetteville Observer [Fayetteville, NC] March 15, 2008.
The Energy Office of the Lumbee Tribe will make one-time payments to American Indian applicants who meet eligibility requirements to help with winter heating costs. To be eligible, the household income of the applicant must be at or below 110% of the poverty level. The payments will be made in February.
"Lumbee Tribe offers heating cost help." Robesonian [Lumberton, NC] Sunday, November 2, 2008.
The Museum of the Native American Resource Center at the University of North Carolina at Pembroke reopened after adding three new exhibits and completing some structural remodeling. One new exhibit is called "Recollections: Lumbee Heritage," which features photos and life experiences of the Lumbee Tribe before 1945 and in 1994. The other exhibits include the history of the Lumbee community and the history of UNC-Pembroke.
"Native American Museum Reopens." The Pine Needle [University of North Carolina at Pembroke] June, 2008.
Democratic U.S. Senate candidate Kay Hagan visited Pembroke, NC on October 29 to make a promise. If elected, Hagan promises to support Lumbee Tribal recognition and work hard towards achieving it. Says Hagan: "I support tribal recognition. I'm a hard worker, and I think I help get something done." Hagan also supports education reform and wants to help counties and towns with poor economies.
"Hagan pledges Lumbee support." Robesonian [Lumberton, NC] October 30, 2008.
Former Sheriff Glenn Maynor reported to The Federal Correctional Institution in Fort Dix on August 27 and began his six-year prison sentence. Maynor is one of twenty-one former lawmen of Robeson County sentenced in Operation Tarnished Badge. The other deputies are serving in prisons in five different states, with the exception of two who were sentenced to home confinement or placed on probation.
Jenkins, Venita. "Maynor begins sentence in N.J." Fayetteville Observer [Fayetteville, NC] Thursday, August 28, 2008.
Oklahoma City, Sept. 2, 2008
For the first time in its history, tourism in Robeson County exceeded $100 million, ranking it 33rd in North Carolina in tourism expenditures. The tourism industry in Robeson County is made up mainly of hotels, restaurants, and convenience stores. The goals for the newly formed Robeson Tourism Association are to make the county a popular tourist destination and to raise numbers even higher than the $100 million mark.
Yeomans, Jonathan. "Tourism tops $100 million for first time." Robesonian [Lumberton, NC] September 10, 2007.
Robeson County native and UNC-Pembroke alumnus Rev. Dr. Jerry Lowry died in his home on May 4, 2007, at age 58. Lowry worked twenty five years in the ministry and was a notable member of the Lumbee community. He received the Lumbee Businessman Award for outstanding service and community involvement and was a member of the Robeson County Board of Education as well as a trustee for several educational and religious facilities.
"Death notices--Part III." News and Observer [Raleigh, NC] Sunday, May 6, 2007: B10.