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Native farmers cultivate old varieties of corn

Some Native farmers in Oklahoma are still cultivating varieties of corn that were passed down through the generations.

Kent Sanmann grows a corn that one of his Kiowa ancestors learned how to plant in while a prisoner in Mexico. Aiontay brought the seed back to Oklahoma, where it was used to prevent the tribe from dying of starvation.

Stewart Owings, a member of the Wichita Tribe, grows a small-kernel variety he inherited from his grandmother. He likes to share the corn but says people tend to choose a non-Native variety.

Deb Echo-Hawk, a member of the Pawnee Tribe, has gone to Nebraska to find old seeds. She has helped resurrect several varieties.

Get the Story:
Native corn may revive Indian nutrition (The Oklahoman 12/14)

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