Today, I have a special treat for you, dear readers. I’d like to introduce you to man who is known for being the first Native American comedian to reach the national US audience. I first became aware of Charlie Hill because his standup routine is featured in my favorite documentary, Reel Injun. The documentary features clips of his performance on the Richard Pryor show, and I was hooked.
Charlie Hill was born in 1951 as a member of the Oneida Nation of Wisconsin. He studied Speech and Drama at University of Wisconsin-Madison. During his career, he appear on the Richard Pryor Show (see below), the Tonight Show with Johnny Carson, the Tonight Show with Jay Leno, and several appearances on Late Night with David Letterman. Charlie Hill passed away December 30, 2013.
Charlie Hill on the Richard Pryor Show, 1977
To read about a man who had a very different approach to colonization, check out this story about Geronimo.
Header Image Credit: “Landing of Columbus” by John Vanderlyn. Licensed under Public Domain via Commons.