Cover to Cover Open Book, for November 21, 2008 - 3:00pm
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For over a hundred years the Mohawks of Akwesasne, a reservation on the New York-Canada border, pursued the occupation of ironworkers, one of the most dangerous jobs in construction. Mohawks were on the high steel crews of every bridge and skyscraper in Manhattan, commuting between job and their 12-hour-distant home every weekend, and became famous for their skill, daring and major contribution to the skyline of New York. This is the story of men plying a difficult craft in the modern world while cleaving to tribal customs in an ancient world -- a balancing act that has taken its toll in lives and relationships. An honest, intimate and informative portrait of an unusual occupation and the Native Americans who made it their own.
Produced by Helen Borden