Intertribal Council of AT&T Employees Place Historical Markers to Honor Lenape Native American Trails in Monmouth County

AT&T Blog Team
November 21, 2022
Community Impact

Intertribal Council of AT&T Employees Place Historical Markers to Honor Lenape Native American Trails in Monmouth County

AT&T employees have a long history of giving back to the communities where they live, work and play.

We also have 26 Employee Groups across the company. The members of these groups are the cultural lifeblood of our organization. And, when it comes to advancing diversity, equity and inclusion, they are the vanguard, helping to shape our path forward. One such group, the Intertribal Council of AT&T Employees (ICAE), brings awareness and opportunities for cultural development, career advancement education, understanding and the well-being of all employees, and specifically Native Americans.

Founded in 1983, ICAE is dedicated to supporting Native American communities and their advancement in the fields of Math and Science. They provide annual scholarships to deserving Native American college students and also help to place them at internships within AT&T.

Last month, ICAE members here in New Jersey placed historical markers along several of the Monmouth County portions of the Lenape Great Navesink to Minisink Trail. The Lenape were Native Americans who used the trail for seasonal migration, travel, and trade, and the trail served as a foundation for some of the earliest roads in New Jersey. The signs are located near the entrance to the AT&T Middletown facility on Holland Road, Kings Highway in Middletown, and on Crawfords Corner Road at Holmdel Park.

The 75-mile Lenape Great Navesink to Minisink Trail was the longest Lenape Trail in New Jersey and is recorded as having groups as large as 700 people traveling together in transit. It connected the Lenape communities living along the Navesink River area of Sandy Hook to the Lenape Minsi (People of the Stone Country) Council Fire at Minisink Island in today’s Delaware Water Gap. At Minisink Island, an Eastern Region Trading Hub existed which further connected to the Mohawk Trail in New York State as well as other trade routes leading into Pennsylvania, the Great Lakes Region, and Canada.

AT&T provided the funding for one marker, and the ICAE raised the funds for the additional markers. Significant support and partnership for this project came from Middletown Township and Mayor Tony Perry, the Monmouth County Park System, the Middletown Township Historical Society, the Middletown Landmarks Commission, the Sandhill Lenape Community of Neptune NJ, the federally recognized Delaware Tribe of Indians, and AT&T.

What people are saying:

“The Township Committee and I are honored to play a part in formally recognizing the original settlers of Middletown. It is important that we pay tribute to those who were responsible for giving us the wonderful place we are fortunate enough to call home.” – Middletown Mayor Tony Perry

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