Join the Downtown Grand Rapids Inc., the Greater Grand Rapids Women’s History Council, the City of Grand Rapids, Lions & Rabbits and numerous community partners in a celebration of the Women’s Way Murals. Every Wednesday in September we will be holding a ribbon cutting to feature each completed Women’s Way Mural in downtown Grand Rapids. Along with the ribbon cutting these events will also include local artist performances, a video on the background of the women of the murals, and time to mingle with food and drinks!
On Wednesday, September 8th from 7pm to 8pm we will be celebrating the Angeline Kelsey “Naw Kay o say” Yob mural located in the alley off Sheldon Blvd NE between the Grand Rapids Children’s Museum and The Apartment Lounge.
Angeline Kelsey “Naw Kay o say” Yob (1924-2002)
The descendant and ancestor of Chiefs, Angeline Kelsey “Naw Kay o say” Yob was an educator, community activist and citizen of the Grand River Bands of Ottawa Indians. She was the great, great-granddaughter of Chief Maish Ke Aw She, one of the signatories of the Treaty of 1855, which provided the terms for the removal of the Ottawa from the Grand River Valley.
Yob, at the age of five, experienced her own forced move to a Native American Boarding School. Still, she retained her native language and would go on to help lead the Native American Education Program at Grand Rapids Public Schools. For three decades, she used stories as teaching instruments to help students of Native American descent learn and grow in their traditions.
“Angeline Kelsey Yob helped establish many of the first groups for the Grand Rapidian Native Americans. The turtle shows all the Grand River Bands of Ottawa Indians. The kids dancing represent the culture, and the knowledge that Angeline brought children. I placed her portrait within the medicine wheel because of the constant lessons within.” Statement by Artist Alan Compo.
The Women’s Way Initiative aspires to elevate the historical narratives of exceptional local leaders while adding new energy and creative interest to often-overlooked public places. The initiative also boldly endeavors to acknowledge the complicated history of women in alleyways and help claim positive ownership of these spaces. Organized by Downtown Grand Rapids Inc., the Greater Grand Rapids Women’s History Council, the City of Grand Rapids, Lions & Rabbits and numerous community partners.