“She Always Gave.” Remembering Shoshone Elder Lillian Pabawena Pubigee
Gwen Timbimboo Davis is a member of the Northwestern Band of the Shoshone Nation. But she didn’t grow up on a reservation. In the 1950s, her family was part of the Indian Relocation program, where the US government sought to assimilate Native Americans into mainstream society by placing them in bigger cities across the country.
Gwen’s family migrated from city to city across the Wasatch Front region in Utah. They had a brief stint in Washakie, another in Layton, and ultimately settled in Brigham City.
But Gwen continued to visit the tribe’s reservations for powwows, funerals, or basketball games, and during the summers she’d visit her grandparents. The time she spent with her maternal grandmother, Lillian Pabawena Pubigee, stands out the most.
Gwen came to StoryCorps with her daughter, Heather Timbimboo Jorgensen, to talk about those trips, and to honor the memory of Lillian.
Top Photo: Gwen Timbimboo Davis at her StoryCorps interview in Brigham City, Utah on August 9, 2007. By Rachel Falcone for StoryCorps.
Middle Photo: Gwen Timbimboo Davis (second from left to right) with the Northwestern Band of the Shoshone Nation’s language preservation group at their tribal office in Ogden, Utah in May 2023. Photo courtesy of Heather Timbimboo Jorgensen.
Bottom Photo: Heather Timbimboo Jorgensen in Ogden, Utah in December 2021. Photo courtesy of Heather Timbimboo Jorgensen.
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Originally aired June 09, 2023, on NPR’s Morning Edition.