Nora Thompson Dean: Lenape Teacher and Herbalist

June 6 through September 17, 2023

An exhibition in the Rotunda of the 1906 Library and an installation in the Morgan Garden, developed collaboratively with the Lenape Center and Hudson Valley Farm Hub, honors Nora Thompson Dean (1907–1984), a Lenape teacher and herbalist who worked to preserve Lenape culture. Born and raised in Oklahoma, Dean made multiple influential visits to Lenapehoking, the ancestral lands of the Lenape (an area that now encompasses New Jersey and sections of New York, Pennsylvania, Delaware, and Connecticut). The exhibition, incorporating letters, photographs, and printed materials, sheds light on different aspects of Nora Thompson Dean's life and teaching. It is complemented by an installation of plants important to the Lenape in the Morgan Garden, including corn, squash, and beans.

Listen to audio guide

This exhibition and garden installation is organized by the Morgan Library & Museum in collaboration with The Lenape Center and the Hudson Valley Farm Hub. It is made possible by the Sherman Fairchild Fund for Exhibitions.

Nora Thompson Dean. Photograph by Roy Pataro.

Selected Images