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#1 Alexander

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Posted 18 September 2006 - 03:34 PM

McCain blasts administration for inaction on Indian case

Sept. 18, 2006 12:00 AM


Sen. John McCain gave an earful Thursday to President Bush's nominee to be the assistant secretary of Indian Affairs at the Department of the Interior, blasting as "incomprehensible" the administration's inaction on a proposed settlement to the 10-year-old Indian trust case.

The Arizona Republican, overseeing a hearing of his Senate Indian Affairs Committee, told the nominee, Carl Artman, that it's been five weeks since he and Sen. Byron Dorgan of North Dakota, the top Democrat on the committee, met with Interior Secretary Dirk Kempthorne and Attorney General Alberto Gonzales.

McCain said he and Dorgan presented "what we believed to be a reasonable solution."




"Both the secretary and attorney general said they'd circulate that within the administration and get back to us," McCain told Artman.

At issue in the case is billions of dollars in land lease and mineral royalties owed by the government to Native American landowners in Arizona and across the nation because of government mismanagement over their trust accounts.

Lawyers for the lead plaintiff, Elouise Cobell, have alleged that Indian landowners are owed at least $100 billion in royalties tied to farming, grazing, mining, logging and other activities on tribal lands.

They have said they would consider the Arizona senator's compromise bill, which has been explained to them as offering $8 billion in settlement money.

However, McCain said on Thursday that, to date, "we've had no official response" from the administration, "and the window for action this year is closing fast."

McCain is expected to leave the committee's chairmanship at the end of this year, which concludes the two-year congressional session.

"Therefore, we've sent a letter to the secretary and the attorney general again asking for a final assessment and response," McCain said.

He asked Artman to take a message back to the administration, as well.

"It's incomprehensible that the administration not be able to come up with at least a response to what is the product of years of effort on the part of this committee and the interested parties," McCain said.

If left to linger unresolved in the courts, Dorgan warned, this trust case "will weigh over all the other issues and have profound impact on virtually everything else" that the Department of the Interior is trying to do with respect to Indian issues.

Told of McCain's comments, Interior Department spokesman Shane Wolfe said, "We continue to have excellent discussions with congressional staff and look forward to bringing the issue to closure with a mutually acceptable resolution."

In his testimony to the committee, Artman, a former chief counsel and member of the Oneida Tribe of Indians of Wisconsin, said resolution of the case is critical, "whether it comes from Congress, the administration or the courts."

"The sooner this litigation ends, the sooner we improve our relationship with tribes, and the sooner we increase for Indians and Alaska Natives the benefits of that relationship," Artman said.
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" It makes absolutely no difference
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"Just as a candle cannot burn without fire, men cannot live without a spiritual life. "
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The avatar you see is a photo of the stone Celtic cross at The Iona Abbey on the isle of Iona Scotland. It has stood for over 1,200 years.

#2 Dracophoenix

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Posted 23 September 2006 - 09:23 AM

Thanks for the information. I only knew that Mc.Cain wasn't pleased but that's all I remember hearing.

#3 Alexander

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Posted 23 September 2006 - 04:51 PM

Tohono O'odham protest border fence

Arthur H. Rotstein
Associated Press Writer
Sept. 23, 2006 12:00 AM

TUCSON - Border-security fencing authorized under legislation now before the U.S. Senate will damage environmental, cultural and natural resources on the Tohono O'odham Nation, its chairman says.

Tribal Chairwoman Vivian Juan-Saunders wrote Arizona Sens. John McCain and Jon Kyl on Thursday to voice the Indian nation's opposition to the Secure Fence Act, which the House approved last week. The act would approve construction of 700 miles of fence across a third of the U.S.-Mexican border.

McCain, who chairs the Senate Indian Affairs Committee, did not respond immediately to a request through his press secretary, Ellen McMenamin, for comment.


Kyl's press secretary, Ryan Patmintra, said Kyl was at a campaign event in Arizona and could not be reached immediately.

Juan-Saunders said the act would "unnecessarily damage the physical environment and cultural and natural resources" in areas where proposed double-layered fencing is to be built on the reservation, which shares 75 miles of border with Mexico.

The reinforced fencing is to go through portions of Texas, New Mexico, Arizona and California.

"This type of wall would be extremely damaging to the fragile desert ecosystems of the American Southwest," Juan-Saunders wrote.

The House passed legislation last December that concentrated on border security and enforcement of laws banning employment of undocumented workers.

The Senate in May passed a broader bill that included provisions for a guest worker program and ways for the nation's estimated 12 million illegal immigrants to work toward legal status and eventual citizenship.

There has been no progress in efforts to reconcile the two bills.

Juan-Saunders said the building process "would be tremendously flawed from the outset, to the detriment of the (Tohono O'odham) nation and other local communities."

The bill would enable the Department of Homeland Security to waive, and therefore ignore, normally applicable federal, state and local environmental, public health and labor laws, she said.

It also would close the Tohono O'odham Nation off from the planning process, she said.

The fencing will be built within culturally and ecologically sensitive locations, likely including lands within national forests, monuments, parks, wildlife refuges and wilderness areas, she wrote.


[I]Commentary: I must admit I am confused by this protest. The Tohono O'odham Reservation has suffered much environmental degradation at the hands of illegal border crossers and the trash they leave behind so I am somewhat confused at why they object to this " fence " which is not really a fence, or is it ? I hope others may wish to comment on this contradiction. Alex
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"Just as a candle cannot burn without fire, men cannot live without a spiritual life. "
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The avatar you see is a photo of the stone Celtic cross at The Iona Abbey on the isle of Iona Scotland. It has stood for over 1,200 years.

#4 Alexander

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Posted 06 October 2006 - 05:00 PM

Billions in payouts to Indians in jeopardy

Billy House
Republic Washington Bureau
Oct. 6, 2006 12:00 AM

WASHINGTON - What has been seen as the best hope for settling a decade-old lawsuit over billions of dollars owed to Native American landowners is quickly fading, the victim of politics and timing.

Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., has proposed an $8 billion compromise bill. But if it is not passed before Congress adjourns its two-year session, the matter could be in jeopardy of lingering without a resolution for years longer. The longest and largest class-action suit brought against the government, it already has dragged through two presidential administrations and six congressional sessions.

"The likelihood of anything getting enacted this year is very slim," said Keith Harper, a lawyer for the lead plaintiff in the case, Elouise Cobell.

"The key is McCain. It is in his almost sole power to push the (Bush) administration to bring this to closure," he said of McCain, whom he notes has successfully used his political will and clout to take on the White House on other issues.

The lawsuit asserts that as many as a half-million Native Americans and their heirs, including 50,000 in Arizona, may be owed more than $100 billion in unpaid royalties, plus interest, for grazing, mining, logging and drilling on their land. At issue is property held in trust in their names for more than a century by the Department of the Interior, which includes the Bureau of Indian Affairs.

The case has been a political hot potato, in part because of the hit the U.S. Treasury would take with a settlement, which would also require funds for retracing and verifying individual accounts and money owed.

Today in Sacramento, the National Congress of American Indians is expected to pass a resolution embracing McCain's proposed settlement. It says the settlement is not perfect but is the quickest and fairest way to settle claims that the trust has been mismanaged for more than a century.

But there are still major wrinkles, not the least of which is that the Bush administration hasn't agreed to the proposed settlement figure.

McCain, the outgoing chairman of the Senate's Indian Affairs Committee, could not be reached. But lawyers involved with the case say his committee staffers have been busy trying to finalize a settlement.

As the case has lingered, no one knows how much is really owed, especially when unpaid interest is added. Reaching a settlement has been complicated not just by the large amount of any potential settlement but also by the fact that trust records were destroyed over the past century, adding to accounting disagreements.

Meanwhile, plaintiffs are growing older.

When he took over in 2005, McCain promised he'd make trust reform a priority during his committee chairmanship and would give finding a solution "one good shot." In January, he is expected to move on to the chairmanship of the Armed Services Committee.

Lawyers for the plaintiffs have offered to accept $27.5 billion, to be spread among individual Indians who have accounts in the trust program. But the Bush administration has rejected that. The lawyers have been mum on McCain's lower settlement figure.

"It's incomprehensible that the administration not be able to come up with at least a response to what is the product of years of work on the part of this committee and interested parties," McCain said at a hearing last month.

But there may be some movement. Today's resolution comes days after Interior Secretary Dirk Kempthorne told the Indian congress that he is working with administration officials and McCain to find a "fair, full and final" resolution.

"I hope that we will soon have a final settlement," Kempthorne said Monday.

Interior Department spokesman Shane Wolfe declined to elaborate.

But John Dossett, the Indian congress' general counsel, said he believes the Bush administration is seriously considering what a potential settlement may look like. And although chances a resolution could be reached this year are slim, he doesn't rule it out.

"I certainly think a lot of progress has been made," he said. "And I think a good deal of the impetus comes from the work of Senator McCain and his committee."

Whether that progress will lead to a resolution during this term remains increasingly unlikely, however.

"If they're going to wait for the administration to sign off on every aspect of the bill, they're going to wait a long time," Harper said.



Delaying the matter into the next Congress may make a congressional resolution even more difficult, he said, because lawmakers would have to persuade a lame-duck president and his budget aides to go along.

Catherine Aragon, a lawyer for the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community, said tribal members support McCain's bill and appreciate his efforts. She would not comment on how many members may be owed money.

But Alan Taradash, an Albuquerque lawyer who represents 25,000 to 30,000 Navajo landowners in New Mexico and southern Utah and their heirs, including some in Arizona, said he doesn't like the settlement. He said he opposes provisions that would prevent some future claims of mismanagement of individual and tribal resources.

"I would never agree to that," he said.



Reach the reporter at billy.house@arizonarepublic.com.
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"Just as a candle cannot burn without fire, men cannot live without a spiritual life. "
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The avatar you see is a photo of the stone Celtic cross at The Iona Abbey on the isle of Iona Scotland. It has stood for over 1,200 years.

#5 vulnera

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Posted 06 October 2006 - 07:21 PM

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But Alan Taradash, an Albuquerque lawyer who represents 25,000 to 30,000 Navajo landowners in New Mexico and southern Utah and their heirs, including some in Arizona, said he doesn't like the settlement. He said he opposes provisions that would prevent some future claims of mismanagement of individual and tribal resources.

"I would never agree to that," he said.

wow.

astounding how they cant just pay up.

what a great role model for the rest of the governments on earth in regards to how to royally screw their indigenous (or what have you) populations.

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disgusting.

#6 vulnera

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Posted 06 October 2006 - 09:43 PM

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Air conditioners in the arctic? Earlier this year, officials in the Canadian Inuit territory of Nunavut authorized the installation of air conditioners in official buildings for the first time. Artificial cooling was necessary, they decided, because summertime temperatures in some southern arctic villages have climbed into the 80s in recent years. Inuit families in the region never used to need to shop in grocery stores, either. But the arctic seas that always stayed frozen well into the summer have started breaking open much earlier, cutting off hunters from the seasonal caribou herds on which their families depend for sustenance. And experienced Inuit hunters, as comfortable reading ice conditions as professional golfers are reading greens, had seldom fallen through the ice and drowned. But this year in Alaska, more than a dozen vanished into the sea. "These are men used to running their trap lines -- people who know the area well -- yet they are literally falling through. They are just gone," said Patricia Cochran, executive director of the Alaska Native Science Commission in Anchorage and chairwoman of the Inuit Circumpolar Council. "The ice conditions are just so drastically different from all of their hunting lifetimes." And last year, for the first time, mosquitoes were sighted at Resolute Bay.

source link

mosquito borne illnesses like dengue, malaria and west nile are on the rise worldwide.

it seems at this rate soon no one will be safe from the "tropical" illnesses anywhere anymore... plus who knows what sleeping viruses will reemerge from the slowly melting permafrost.

alarming, disturbing?? naah, global warming is a farce, lol.. just ask the presnit.

#7 Alexander

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Posted 11 October 2006 - 01:53 PM

The Summer of 1942

During the World War II era, the federal government condemned and leased hundreds of thousands of Indian acres for military use, much of it never returned to Indian hands. In this series, Indian Country Today spoke with Native people affected by the takings, many who served their country in wartime, lost their land to the government, and still harbor strong feelings on the matter.

KYLE, S.D. - Pat Cuny went to Europe with the 83rd Infantry Division in 1944 feeling like he'd already been through a scrape. His family had just been run off their land on the Pine Ridge Reservation by the Department of War.

In 1942, a gunnery range the size of a whole county displaced 125 Lakota families from Oglala treaty land. They had 30 days - or less - to leave homes, farms, schools and cemeteries behind.

Cuny's parents got $1,200 for an allotted half-section of land, Pat recalled, house, barn and outbuildings thrown in. ''Everything that was left after 30 days, they just came and chain sawed and made little hutches, little A-houses, for machine gunners. We didn't have no money to move the house.''

That summer the family scattered. Some went to work at the Black Hills Ordnance Depot; his mother, recently widowed, moved to Denver. ''I was going to get drafted, so I just enlisted,'' Cuny said hoarsely, his voice rasping from a decade-long bout with throat cancer.

The war found him when the Germans torpedoed his troop transport in the English Channel. Half his company went down, and ''damn few'' were rescued, he said. Cuny ''fought through France, fought through Germany'' and saw Europe on Uncle Sam's nickel - lucky to come home in one piece. ''There was a lot of these Indian boys who gave their lives.''

After the war, Congress awarded $3,500 extra per family for the gunnery range takings. ''It never came to $5,000 for a half-section of ground,'' growled Cuny, doggedly bitter during several conversations. ''That's good ground. That's the choicest ground there is in the center of this table. That's that black soil about 6 foot deep - I know because we dug a lot of graves over there by hand.''

Stories like Cuny's are as common as prickly pear in Indian country - for the time being. About a thousand World War II veterans die every day, and the memory of the ''good war'' fades with them. But Native veterans still recall what the War Department took from their own backyard while they were off fighting Hideki Tojo and Adolf Hitler.

With blitzkrieg in the air, some powerful buyers came to Indian country. Some of the least productive land in the American West, much of it reserved for Native people in trust, suddenly had enormous military value. While landowners of all races were affected, Indian land, already in federal control, was the easiest to take.

Indian acreage was seized for training grounds, bombing ranges, base camps, air strips, and Japanese-American internment centers. A conservative estimate puts Indian land takings in the World War II era at 1 million acres, an area the size of Rhode Island - with millions more taken in ceded traditional lands adjacent to reservations.

Though never officially named, ''Operation Indian Country,'' to coin a phrase, qualifies as the largest Native land taking in America since allotment. Much of that land has never returned to Indian control.

Some areas were condemned by eminent domain and ''purchased'' for a deflated, court-determined fee. Others were leased from tribes for extended periods, often at dirt-cheap rates. Some land was returned to Indian owners only after absorbing environmental damage that has compromised development for the past half century.

Ask the Walker River Paiute, who have long complained about underground ordnance on their Nevada reservation. Paiute land straddles Bravo 19 Bombing Range near Fallon Naval Air Station, established in 1942. Tribal environment director Tad Williams said there are hundreds, if not thousands, of Native acres in need of cleanup, a job the military estimated at $1 million before a private consulting firm dismissed the sum as inadequate. The tribe filed a tort claim against the government, but the case has languished for lack of money.

Or take the Shoshone-Bannock of southern Idaho, another willing contributor to the war effort. About 1,000 acres of reservation land were condemned by the War Powers Act and taken for use as a landing strip in the 1940s. Though allotment owners were compensated, the tribe was given to understand the land would one day be returned.

Instead, the strip was sold as excess property to the Pocatello municipal government for a nominal fee. Today, the tribe must deal with a large patch of land in the middle of the reservation - the site of the city airport - that creates jurisdictional headaches and a lot of overhead noise. Sixty years later, said tribal officials, the matter still rankles.

Farther north, the Sitka Tribe of Alaska lost prime waterfront land in Sitka village that was never returned by the War Department and is now owned by a private fish processor. Said tribal attorney Jessica Perkins when asked about a paper trail: ''The War Department didn't take notes about those kinds of things.''

Al Duncan Sr., Sitka tribe, a member of the city assembly, can vouch for that. Duncan was an infant in 1942 when the Army asked his father to vacate land on Excursion Inlet, about 50 miles west of Juneau. Peter Duncan, a prospector, boat builder, and former Northwest mounted policeman, was hopping mad. After three warnings, he placed two American flags on his door - one for each of the sons he had in the military. ''You're going to have to kill me to take my land,'' Al Duncan recounted his father saying.

The Army resettled Peter Duncan but never issued a deed. When Haines Borough later claimed ownership of the relocated tract, he didn't have any paperwork. ''If it was up to us to give ourselves a deed, we'd own all southeast Alaska,'' Al Duncan said. He fought to have his father's 60 acres returned and was ready to go to trial when the state gave 19 of them back, a settlement arranged out of court. ''No one even knew what a deed was,'' Duncan said, ''but we sure as hell do now.''

Deeds didn't mean much in wartime, as the Cuny family found out. Those with no paper at all - like the Navajo of Fort Wingate - were in even bigger trouble.
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" It makes absolutely no difference
what people think of you."
Rumi, 'We Are Three', Mathnawi VI, 831-845

"Just as a candle cannot burn without fire, men cannot live without a spiritual life. "
Buddha


The avatar you see is a photo of the stone Celtic cross at The Iona Abbey on the isle of Iona Scotland. It has stood for over 1,200 years.

#8 Alexander

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Posted 15 October 2006 - 03:22 PM

Downtown Phoenix yields a rare archaeological find
As convention center rises, dig unearths ancient culture

Angela Cara Pancrazio
The Arizona Republic
Oct. 15, 2006 12:00 AM

Streams of sweat rolled down Mark Hackbarth's face.

The archaeologist and his crew dug with shovels and hand trowels. Nearby, bulldozers rumbled under the hot summer sun on another corner of the downtown construction site for the new Phoenix Convention Center.

Because of tight construction schedules, Hackbarth had 30 days to excavate the remains of a prehistoric Hohokam village that had been preserved under the old Phoenix Civic Plaza.


When Hackbarth was called to the site at the end of July, he expected to find Hohokam ruins. But even after 20 years of archaeological work in the Valley, he never imagined the immensity of what he found.

Hackbarth uncovered three of the earliest known pithouses in the Phoenix metropolitan area, houses that were 3,000 years old. And as he dug, he kept finding more traces of the ancient civilization.

Today, thousands of artifacts from the dig rest in a Tempe laboratory as Hackbarth analyzes one of the Valley's greatest archaeological finds.

With downtown Phoenix engrossed in its biggest burst of construction since World War II, the discovery in its heart is a reminder of how far back the area's history goes.

The pioneers who first settled in Phoenix knew they were building on the ruins of a previous civilization. They named the city Phoenix to recognize the new rising from the old. But no one back in the 19th century would know how old the ruins they found in the dirt really were.

When the Phoenix Civic Plaza was built in the early 1970s, it sat on a cement slab, not a basement.

That left the ruins covered until this summer.

Surrounded by a culture fortified with glass, steel and concrete, the archaeologist circled the remnants of houses where people began living 1,000 years before the birth of Christ.

By the time Hackbarth and his crew from the Tempe-based archaeological firm Logan Simpson Design were finished in early September, they had discovered nearly 40 Hohokam pithouses. They had also filled 3,500 little brown sacks with artifacts and dirt to be studied for more clues about the people who first found a way to live in the desert.


An ancient people


The word Hohokam comes from the Akimel O'odham term for "those who have gone."

Their irrigation techniques and canal systems enabled them to farm, build a series of pueblos and thrive from the time of Christ until they vanished around 1450.

Four tribes today - the Salt River Pima-Maricopa, the Ak-Chin, the Gila River and the Tohono O'odham - trace their ancestry back to the Hohokam.

Remnants of the Hohokam are buried across the Valley, beneath the runways at Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport, Arizona State University's Sun Devil Stadium and much of downtown.

Early in the 20th century, archaeologists mapped out Hohokam villages dotting the Salt River Valley. The area of old downtown Phoenix - between Central Avenue and 10th Street, Fillmore and Harrison Streets - rests on a village named Pueblo Patricio.


In the early 1990s, Bostwick and Hackbarth had excavated remnants of a Hohokam village next door to the old Civic Plaza in what is now Heritage Square at Seventh Street and Washington. Looking at the blueprints, Bostwick realized there was a good chance more pithouses might be found on the new site.


Pieces of the puzzle


Through the muggy heat of the monsoon season, Hackbarth and his crew methodically unearthed the site, often a fraction of an inch at a time.

Bulldozers had removed about 5 feet of dirt, and from there the tools were shovels and common garden trowels. They collected dirt in dustpans and sifted it through screens.

"Even these little pieces of pottery can be informative," said Bostwick as he nimbly tried to grasp a broken piece of pottery between his finger and thumb.

"We can look at what's inside the pottery and we can source the materials used to make the pottery and determine which village this pottery was made at; it might not have been made at this village."

Every fragment recovered by the team is bagged and marked with its pithouse location. After each piece is analyzed, the archaeologists will have an idea of how long people stayed at this location, how many lived here and what kind of crops they grew and traded.

Near the end of the monthlong dig, Hackbarth stood among rectangular and circular outlines of the pithouses.

"If you just look at this and say, 'Ah, this is a house,' that can only get you so far," Hackbarth said.

"But looking at what's on the floor, what's nearby, you understand more of how things were done in the past and you're not just seeing a nice artifact or seeing a wonderful house. You get to look more at their social structure, aspects of how they lived and died."


Death, disappearance


Human remains are part of a Hohokam village.

During the month of digging, the archaeologists found two burial sites. Out of respect and as part of an agreement with the tribes, all digging stopped immediately.

A medicine man from the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Community came and blessed the remains. Then they were removed and taken away for study to try to determine how they died. Remains and any pots or objects associated with the grave will later be returned to the tribe.

The Hohokam disappeared from the Valley in the 15th century. No one knows why.

Some archaeologists believe their farming could no longer sustain their growing population. Others think there might have been conflict among the villages. Or drought or floods could have diminished their canal system.

The ancient culture flourished in the Salt River Valley due to their canal system that diverted water from the Salt River. Over a span of more than 1,400 years, they created as many as 16 independent canal systems. Some of the canals, more than 1,000 miles of them, were 50 feet wide. The Hohokam moved tons of earth and carved out their canals with stone and wood tools.

Winds and rain covered the abandoned villages with dirt and preserved the ruins.

In 1929, Phoenix was the first American city to hire a full-time archaeologist, who helped preserve the Hohokam village of Pueblo Grande. Bostwick was hired as the city's fourth archaeologist in 1990.

Whenever a developer or the city wants to put up a new office building or high-rise, Bostwick studies whether anything of archaeological or historic significance will be disturbed. During the 1980s, the city adopted a historic preservation ordinance that included protection of its archaeological resources.

In recent years, cities and counties around the state have adopted similar ordinances. But it's still not enough, said John Madsen, associate curator of archaeology at the Arizona State Museum.

Around Arizona, looting and vandalism was so widespread at archaeological sites that in 1990 Arizona passed legislation more stringent than previous burial laws.

It is illegal to knowingly disturb any buried human remains or burial artifacts on public or private land, including backyards, without permission from the state.

Ravaging of sacred Indian burial grounds by pot hunters continues, said Madsen, especially in the far reaches of Arizona where it is often impossible to police and prevent the thievery.

"Everyone that's buried has a large number of vessels buried with them."

Madsen said the looters know where the burials are and go after them.

"They wreak havoc, the research potential is gone forever and they are disturbing human remains."


The continuum


After the dig, Hackbarth and archaeologists Mary Ellen Walsh and John Rapp began studying the soil and fragments at their Tempe lab.

One morning, Hackbarth ran his fingers over a large trough-shaped rock. There are tiny pockmarks created by grinding saguaro seeds and corn kernels into the basalt.

Walsh eyed a pottery shard with a microscope.

"This is like my dinner plate and someone used this pottery," she said.

Hackbarth lifted a heavy rock hollowed out at the center like a doughnut. He explained that the Hohokam used such rocks as counterweights on the end of their digging sticks, making it easier to puncture the soil.

Because these remnants are from a Phoenix site, the artifacts will be stored at a climate controlled and secured vault at the city's Pueblo Grande Museum. It will probably take three to five years to complete the archaeological survey for this dig.

Before the dig, Hackbarth and Bostwick thought the Hohokam people lived at this downtown site only seasonally. But the number and size of the pithouses suggest that they lived here more permanently.

Their biggest discovery was uncovering remnants of the late Archaic people, those who came 1,000 years before the Hohokam.

Archaeologists believed these were hunters and gatherers, nomadic people who roamed on the edges of the Valley hunting and living along small streams.

Settling so close to the river means they needed water to irrigate their fields; they weren't just hunters and gatherers, they were farmers too.

Watching the Arizona Diamondbacks or Phoenix Suns or working in a downtown office cubicle, it's tough to imagine that the Hohokam settled at this site because it was higher than the vibrant river nearby where they fished the streams and harvested corn and cotton.

And that they hunted birds and mule deer in a thick mesquite forest that covered the landscape from where Chase Field is today to McDowell Road.

All of the pithouses are gone now, removed by construction crews digging the 40-foot-deep foundation for the new convention center.

But as Phoenix rises once again on the village of Pueblo Patricio, the mystery of the ancient civilization is far from over.
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" It makes absolutely no difference
what people think of you."
Rumi, 'We Are Three', Mathnawi VI, 831-845

"Just as a candle cannot burn without fire, men cannot live without a spiritual life. "
Buddha


The avatar you see is a photo of the stone Celtic cross at The Iona Abbey on the isle of Iona Scotland. It has stood for over 1,200 years.

#9 Appalachian Crone

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Posted 17 October 2006 - 06:22 PM

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I am that Columbine!


#10 Alexander

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Posted 21 October 2006 - 03:45 PM

Oct 21, 3:04 AM EDT

2 arrested in rapes on Fort Apache reservation

FORT APACHE INDIAN RESERVATION, Ariz. (AP) -- Two men have been arrested in connection to a series of rapes of girls whose attacker posed as a police officer on the Fort Apache Indian Reservation.

Jesse Dupris, 26, and Jeremy Reed, 23, were arrested Friday evening by a Bureau of Indian Affairs task force created specifically for the rape cases, said Warren Youngman, a BIA spokesman.

Since November 2005, a man dressing as a police officer raped 15 victims ranging from 11 to 19 years old after "arresting" them on a 2-mile trail behind more than 100 homes in Whiteriver, the capital of the White Mountain Apache Indian Tribe.

Youngman said Dupris and Reed worked together as tribal security officers, patrolling the homes that border the trail where the attacks occurred.

Victims told authorities their attacker wore a black shirt and baseball cap with the word "police" on it before telling them they were under arrest, and then handcuffing and raping them. Youngman said Dupris's and Reed's tribal security uniforms read "security." He would not comment further on the discrepancy.

He would not say what led investigators to the two men.

Last week, the BIA arrested 29-year-old Jimi Aday on one count of kidnapping and two counts of abusive sexual contact and was named a suspect in the series of rapes on girls. What relationship, if any, exists between him and the two men was not clear.

Dupris, an enrolled member of the Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe of South Dakota, was being held on charges including seven counts each of abduction, unlawful restraint, public sexual indecency, sexual conduct with a minor, molestation of a child, impersonating a tribal officer and assault with intent to cause serious physical injury.

Reed, a member of the White Mountain Apache Tribe, was arrested on one count each of the same charges.

"This task force was well organized with some of our best special agents from across Indian Country," BIA Special Agent in Charge Selanhongva McDonald said in a statement. "I am pleased with the outcome of the investigation, and feel the next step now is for the community to feel relieved and safe and to start the healing process."

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" It makes absolutely no difference
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#11 Alexander

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Posted 21 October 2006 - 03:49 PM

Court slaps restrictions on feds' authority over Indian casinos

Associated Press
Oct. 21, 2006 12:00 AM

WASHINGTON - The federal government can't make rules for the ways Las Vegas-style games are played at Indian casinos, an appeals court ruled Friday in a blow to efforts to regulate the $22 billion tribal gambling industry.

The decision by a three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit arises from a dispute in Arizona between the Colorado River Indian Tribes and the National Indian Gaming Commission, the federal agency that oversees Indian casinos.

The commission tried in 2001 to audit the tribe's casino in Parker to ensure compliance with recently enacted federal standards for how games such as blackjack and slot machines are run. The tribe objected, contending the commission was overstepping its authority under the National Indian Gaming Regulatory Act.
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#12 Alexander

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Posted 22 October 2006 - 02:33 PM

What Indian money buys
By Mark Flatten, Tribune
October 22, 2006
Jack Jackson should have been a natural to tap into the millions of dollars Arizona’s Indian tribes pump into elections. A member of the Navajo Nation, Jackson had represented his people as a Democrat in the state Legislature, as his father had before him.



So when Jackson decided to take on Rep. Rick Renzi, R-Ariz., in this year’s congressional election, he was banking on early financial support from Arizona’s casino-rich Indian communities.

What he got instead was a rude awakening — $2,000 from a single Arizona tribe and $5,550 from out-of-state Indian communities.

The lesson for Jackson is that when it comes to Indian money, political loyalty runs thicker than blood.

Renzi is not an Indian. But he is a favorite of the tribes, an incumbent who almost always takes their side in Congress. His reward so far this election is almost $80,000 from Indian tribes, including about $25,400 from Arizona communities.

“I certainly was banking on getting better support from the tribes when I started,� said Jackson, who scrapped his congressional bid in March, citing trouble raising money. “I don’t know why they weren’t quicker with the checkbook.�

continued at http://www.eastvalle...x.php?sty=77175

>>> Since I do not gamble the idea of a boycott does not really apply to me. I do play the state lottery but I consider that a voluntary tax and limit my spending to $ 10 a week. Those of you that do attend native American casinos may wish to look into how the revenues are spent. While non tribal members cannot vote they can " vote " with their feet by refusing to participate unless the tribes are made more accountable for just where the money goes. The reservations, much like the rest of America seem to be sinking to a level of corruption much like a south American 3rd world country. <<
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#13 Alexander

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Posted 04 December 2006 - 02:21 PM

Corinne Purtill
The Arizona Republic
Dec. 4, 2006 12:00 AM


As a child reared in New Mexico's Tesuque Pueblo, Louie Hena played in waist-deep snow in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains.

Less than 50 years later, the snow reaches only to his ankles.

Wahleah Johns, 31, grew up without running water or electricity on the Navajo Reservation. After years of worsening drought, her family now must drive even farther to find water for their personal use and livestock.

Native American communities are witnessing firsthand the effects of a warming planet. Representatives of more than 50 tribes from Alaska to the Mexican border will gather on the Cocopah Reservation near Yuma on Tuesday and Wednesday for what organizers are billing as the first tribal conference on climate change.

They'll share information on the signs of global warming observed on reservations across the continent. Tribal leaders will discuss alternative energy and traditional, sustainable ways of life on their reservations. They also will talk about the effects of U.S. climate-change policy on their land and people.

"Native people have a close relationship to the land, culturally, spiritually, economically," said Tom Goldtooth, executive director of the Minnesota-based Indigenous Environmental Network and a conference speaker.

Climate change, he said, "is becoming a human rights issue."


A living threat
For many American Indian tribes, the effects of climate change, the rise in global temperature caused by heat-trapping gases in the atmosphere, are not an abstract possibility. They are happening.

"I've seen whole banks of trees (along the Rio Grande) eroded away from a single flooding in the spring," Hena said. "I've seen birds going south when they should be going north."

Extended drought is shrinking water supplies and hammering wildlife on reservations in the Southwest and Midwest. Traditional ceremonies based on seasonal changes have been disrupted by prolonged summers and delayed rainy seasons.

Melting ice in the Arctic Circle is destroying the foundation of Inuits' homes and threatening entire villages with relocation.

A national climate-change assessment published in 2000 said climate change posed health, environmental and economic risks to the more than 565 recognized tribes and Alaska Native communities in the United States.

Adjusting to the environmental changes wrought by global warming takes money and technology, commodities scarce on many reservations, the government report said.


Finding solutions
In addition to comparing problems, conference participants also will discuss renewable-energy and sustainable-living solutions under way on many reservations.

An increasing number of tribes are taking advantage of their reservations' unique geography to invest in solar and wind energy. Tribes can sell the power generated to local utilities and can sell carbon credits to companies or individuals looking to offset their own carbon emissions.

Tribes are also looking to old ways of life for answers to new environmental problems.

In the mid-1990s, Hena started teaching a two-week course on traditional uses of the environment for everything from erosion control to medicine. Native people from across the U.S., Canada and South America have since attended the course.

With climate change threatening native lands, traditional survival methods are all the more relevant, Hena said.


A global issue
Forming a Native American response to the Bush administration's climate-change policies is one of the conference's goals. North American tribes have started to fight U.S. climate-change policies that they perceive as harmful.

In 2005, an Inuit group filed suit against the U.S. government, claiming that the government's failure to curb greenhouse gases was destroying the Inuits' culture and environment.

Last month's U.N. climate-change conference in Nairobi concluded that the planet's poorest people produce the fewest greenhouse gas-causing emissions but are bearing the brunt of global warming's harms. Indigenous rights groups complained that the conference largely overlooked their concerns.

For a member of the Navajo Nation living without running water or electricity, "their carbon footprint is a lot smaller than someone maybe who lives in Phoenix," said Johns, an environmental activist and conference speaker. "How do you communicate that?"
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Posted 08 December 2006 - 06:17 AM

Thursday December 7, 9:23 pm ET
By Adrian Sainz, Associated Press Writer
Seminole Tribe Buying Hard Rock Cafe Business for $965 Million

MIAMI (AP) -- The Seminole Tribe of Florida said Thursday it was buying the famed Hard Rock business, including its casinos, restaurants, hotels and huge collection of rock 'n' roll memorabilia, in a groundbreaking $965 million deal with a British company.

The deal with London-based Rank Group PLC is believed to be an American Indian tribe's first purchase of a major international corporation of its size, the Seminoles said. It includes 124 Hard Rock Cafes, four Hard Rock Hotels, two Hard Rock Casino Hotels, two Hard Rock Live! concert venues and stakes in three unbranded hotels.

The Seminoles were the first U.S. tribe to get into the gambling business in 1979. More recently, they had partnered with Hard Rock in successful hotel, gambling and entertainment complexes in Tampa and Hollywood in tourist-friendly Florida. They now have the ability to expand their gaming interests nationally by partnering with a well-known brand, experts said.

The tribe also will acquire what is said to be the world's largest collection of rock memorabilia, some 70,000 pieces including Jimi Hendrix's Flying V guitar, one of Madonna's bustiers, a pair of Elton John's high-heeled shoes and guitars formerly owned by Bob Dylan, Eric Clapton and Chuck Berry.

The deal does not include Hard Rock's Las Vegas casino, however, which is owned by Morgans Hotel Group, or Morgans' rights to Hard Rock intellectual property in Australia, Brazil, Israel, Venezuela and many areas of the United States west of the Mississippi River, a Morgans official said.

more at link:
http://biz.yahoo.com...ribe.html?.v=29

#15 Alexander

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Posted 08 December 2006 - 02:50 PM

The tribe also will acquire what is said to be the world's largest collection of rock memorabilia, some 70,000 pieces including Jimi Hendrix's Flying V guitar, one of Madonna's bustiers, a pair of Elton John's high-heeled shoes and guitars formerly owned by Bob Dylan, Eric Clapton and Chuck Berry.
_____________________________________________________________

This should enhance their cultural values a lot ;)
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Posted 08 December 2006 - 09:32 PM

Quote

This should enhance their cultural values a lot

hah, no offence against the seminole tribe, but this is so... um, ridiculously "corporate" its not even funny. since when can a nation purchase a chain of clubs anyways?

this just sounds oddly wrong to me...

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Posted 13 January 2007 - 07:37 PM

Virginia Indians have support for another federal recognition bill
Posted: January 12, 2007
AMHERST COUNTY, Va. - Six Virginia Indian tribes will seek federal recognition once again through legislation, having maintained support from one legislator who plans to re-introduce such a bill in the U.S. House of Representatives.

Rep. James P. Moran, D-Va., plans to introduce a bill that will grant the tribes - the Nansemond, Chickahominy, Eastern Chickahominy, Rappahannock and Upper Mattaponi, along with the Monacan Indian Nation - federal recognition as the 110th session of Congress gets under way, said Moran's press secretary, Austin Durrer.

''It's a new Congress, a new Democratic majority, and we're hopeful that that's going to bring new opportunities for Virginia's Native Americans to receive their long-awaited recognition,'' Durrer said. ''The international spotlight is going to be on Jamestown this summer with the 400th anniversary. We're hopeful that the fact that so many people will be focusing on the founding of our country and the role that Virginia's Native Americans played in helping the settlers survive the harsh conditions of the new world will bring added impetus to get the bill passed.''

For the past six years, the tribes have come close to gaining that recognition as they've sought approval in time for America's 400th commemoration of the founding of Jamestown, the first permanent English settlement in North America. With the majority of its events scheduled to begin in the summer, the descendants of the Indian nations - the people who helped the first English settlers survive - continue to wait.

''Rep. Jim Moran in the House told us he will once again introduce our bill,'' said Monacan Nation Chief Kenneth Branham. ''We're continuing to talk with Sen. John Warner, and we're hoping to contact Sen. Jim Webb in the near future.''

Warner supported the tribes' effort in the last session by co-sponsoring a bill with former Sen. George Allen, R-Va., who introduced the Thomasina E. Jordan Indian Tribes of Virginia Federal Recognition Act of 2005. Allen lost his bid for re-election in November to Webb, a Democrat.

With Allen's defeat, the tribes lost one point of contact in the Senate but are hopeful for support from Webb, Branham said. However, Webb's victory gave Congress a Democratic majority, which some say means added support and movement of the Virginia tribes' bill.

During the last two congressional sessions, Virginia Indians have worked to educate legislators and the public about their history, agreeing to participate in the commemoration of Jamestown's founding as well as assisting with organizing events. Some have said they want to receive federal recognition, especially before people from all over the world, including England's Queen Elizabeth II, visit Jamestown and Virginia. The tribes moved closer to that goal in 2003, when the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs supported the bill and approved sending it to the Senate for a full vote.

But the House companion bill remained stalled in its Resources Committee during that session. In the last session, the bill received no action by the House, even though the SCIA held a hearing on the bill in June 2006.

With the new House Resources Chairman Nick Rahall, D-W.Va., the Virginia tribes' bill and many others may move forward.

''The chairman has the authority to determine which bills have hearings and which bills receive votes in the committee,'' said Brent Robinson, a legislative assistant to Rep. Jo Ann Davis, who co-sponsored the Virginia tribes' federal recognition bill in 2005.

Some of the federal recognition bills' critics have said the legislation ''sidesteps'' the BIA's federal recognition process. However, Branham said the chiefs of Virginia's eight state-recognized tribes talked with the BIA years ago as they began the process of seeking federal recognition and were told that the process was lengthy and backlogged, and they were advised to seek other methods for establishing federal recognition that may be approved more quickly.

Other challengers to the bills have opposed Virginia tribes' federal recognition because of Indian gaming issues. However, all six tribes have expressed no interest in gaming. The bills introduced included a provision noting the tribes would not utilize the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act. The six Virginia tribes, which are set up as nonprofit organizations, have been allowed under Virginia law to operate bingo games for years, but none of the tribes has pursued bingo as a means of generating revenue.

''Here it is in 2007, and the Virginia Indians are still not recognized,'' Branham said. ''This would be an embarrassment to this country and the state of Virginia if the tribes are not federally recognized, especially since this is a country that prides itself on protecting human rights.''

taken from:
http://www.indiancou...m?id=1096414329

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Posted 13 January 2007 - 08:02 PM

TOWER, Minn. (AP) - For those who believe in spiritual forces, the story of the sacred scrolls of the Bois Forte Band of Chippewa offers a wonderful affirmation. For those who believe we walk alone, the story offers an amazing coincidence.

In September, members of the northern Minnesota tribe gathered at Spirit Island on Nett Lake for a ceremony. There, according to witnesses, a drumkeeper named Shane Drift recounted his recent dream that forgotten stories and songs of the tribe would somehow ''come back to us.'' About two weeks later, in early October, the phone rang at the new Bois Forte Heritage Center and Cultural Museum, next to Fortune Bay Casino.

The caller was Raymond Cloutier, a physician in Bowling Green, Ky. Cloutier said that hanging in glass cases on the walls of his study were 42 birch bark scrolls inscribed with symbols and pictures.

Cloutier said the scrolls had come with a letter saying that some of the scrolls were more than 200 years old, and all originated ''at Nett Lake on the Bois Forte Reservation.''

The letter - a report from a historical society that had sought interpretation from Ojibwe medicine men - said the scrolls depicted ceremonial songs ''concerning the most fundamental laws and needs of the [Ojibwe] people.''

Cloutier told the astounded museum curator, Bill Latady, that he had cherished the scrolls for decades, but he had come to believe they belonged with the tribe. The band announced in early December that the scrolls are back at Bois Forte, in a climate-controlled museum room, after untold decades away.

A group of elders has confirmed that they are long-lost records of the Bois Forte lodge of the Midewiwin, or Grand Medicine Society, a selective Ojibwe religious order that preserved its rites on birch bark and was driven underground for most of the 20th century, when Indian religions were outlawed by the U.S. government.

''Spiritually, this is probably the most important thing that has ever happened [to the tribe],'' said Rose Berens, the tribe's preservation officer. ''I was awe-struck.''

The Bois Forte Reservation is largely in Koochiching County in far northern Minnesota.

The band's elders decided the scrolls cannot be photographed, or even seen, by anyone who doesn't belong to the religious order, except for curator Latady.

Berens said that even she has not seen them, and won't until she is initiated into the order next spring in a ceremony on the Red Lake Reservation.

Cloutier said his grandfather, Dr. Herbert Burns, acquired the scrolls when he was superintendent of Ah-Gwah-Ching tuberculosis sanatorium near Walker in the early 1900s. Bois Forte leaders speculate that poverty-stricken ancestors might have bartered them for treatment.

Cloutier isn't so sure. He said Burns was a ''Renaissance man'' with many interests and collections, including a trove of Indian artifacts, most of which eventually went to a museum in Walker. Cloutier suspects his grandfather bought the scrolls and the authentication letter accompanying them, probably from another non-Indian.

A few years after Burns died in 1949, the scrolls, packed in cardboard drums, went to Cloutier, who was then only about 12.

The scrolls range from 9 by 3 inches to 6 by 2 feet, according to Latady. The drawings are on the brown side of the bark, some drawn with charcoal and others applied with red paint. Some images are carved, he said.

Out of respect to the band's wishes, neither Latady nor Cloutier would describe the drawings, but experts who have studied similar scrolls say they most often contain ''mnemonic,'' or memory-aiding, symbols to recall songs among a people with no written language.

Cloutier said that in the 1990s he became aware of a law requiring institutions that get federal funds to return sacred artifacts to Indian tribes. The law didn't apply to him, but he said a nagging idea grew in him: ''The people the scrolls came from were not some dead Indians from a dead culture; they were still there, and they may have been suffering somewhat for having lost part of their culture. About the time I realized this, I stopped being an owner and became a guardian.''

He found the Bois Forte band's Web site, saw that a museum had opened in 2002, and decided to return the scrolls. His only stipulation was that the band retrieve them; he didn't want to risk shipping them.

A few days after hearing from Cloutier, Berens, spiritual adviser Vernon Adams and Bois Forte elders Myra Thompson and Phyllis Boshey drove to Kentucky, dined with Cloutier and his wife, Joyce, and left with their precious cargo.

''Once I got over the damage to my greed, it made perfect sense to return these things,'' Cloutier said. ''Unfortunately, most of the time, these things were taken from their owners in ways that probably wouldn't make us proud today.''

Tribal Chairman Kevin Leecy wrote to Cloutier that his ''thoughtfulness is deeply appreciated by everyone ... from the elders who listened to the songs and stories in their youth to their children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren, who will once again have that opportunity due to your generosity.''

Adams said he now wonders if the strange journey of the scrolls was fortunate. Similar scrolls were destroyed by missionaries and others during the century that the Midewiwin was outlawed.

''To me, they took a path they were meant to take,'' Adams said. ''They left, were preserved and now have come back. It's exciting to see. This is where our past meets the future.''


taken from:
http://www.indiancou...m?id=1096414292

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Posted 10 February 2007 - 11:21 PM

Bones of contention go home
Three Denver institutions have returned more than 2,000 objects to tribes under a 1990 federal law. The effort is deemed a success - with a few exceptions.

Two painted animal bones - plucked from an American Indian burial site in Florida a century ago, and on a Denver museum shelf for the past 24 years - will be returned next month.

The Denver Museum of Nature & Science is "repatriating" the painted bones to the Miccosukee Tribe, in accordance with a 1990 federal law, officials said earlier this week.

The two bones are part of more than 2,000 objects and the remains of almost 600 individuals returned to tribes from three Denver institutions under the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act.

Sixteen years after the act was passed, museum and tribal representatives say it has been a great success - marred by a few frustrating exceptions.

Some American Indian groups have found the process of returning ancestors home to be bureaucratic, frustrating, expensive and time-consuming.

"We've been on this since the year 2000, trying to get these things returned so our people can be at rest," said Fred Dayhoff, who represents the Miccosukee tribe.

Many museum officials feared the repatriation act would strip their shelves bare of Native American objects - which had come to them through donations, purchases and bequeathals and from expeditions and digs a century ago.

"Rather than NAGPRA leaving us bankrupt, it's enriched the knowledge we have about our objects," said Bridget Ambler, curator of material culture at the Colorado Historical Society.

The Historical Society has returned remains of 568 Native American individuals, and 1,825 items, Ambler said. Last year, some remains were reburied at Mesa Verde National Park.

The Denver Museum of Nature & Science has returned the remains of six people and 176 objects, museum anthropologist Steven Nash said.

The Denver Art Museum has returned 10 items under the act, spokeswoman Andrea Fulton said.

Dayhoff said the Miccosukee people requested hundreds of items from the Denver Museum of Nature & Science six years ago.

"We're going to get two," Dayhoff said.

Other items - shell ornaments, coins and breastplates used in burials, Dayhoff said - remain in limbo because anthropologists identify them as Calusa.

The Miccosukee believe they are descended in part from the Calusa - who disappeared from southwest Florida around 1800, Dayhoff said.

Without the return of the objects, he said, Miccosukee ancestors can't find the next world.

"They will wander Earth forever looking for these lost items," Dayhoff said.

The issue of cultural identification has been the repatriation act's trickiest element, said national program manager Sherry Hutt.

The law has resulted in the return of nearly 32,000 human remains to tribes, she said.

More than 118,000 others sit in limbo on museum shelves because tribes and museums can't figure out to whom they belong, Hutt said.

In most cases, the bones were too poorly cataloged to know where they came from, said Walter Echo-Hawk, a senior staff attorney with the Native American Rights Fund in Boulder who helped write the repatriation act.

Officials are expected to come out with a policy on those culturally unidentified remains sometime this year, he said.

"NAGPRA has worked from the tribal perspective," despite the cumbersome bureaucracy, Echo-Hawk said.

Nash said the museum is working quickly to try to resolve claims by the Miccosukee and other tribes and added that he's embarrassed some tribes have been waiting more than six years for answers.

"I can see why they're frustrated," he said. "We're working on that issue."


http://www.denverpos...news/ci_5189375

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Posted 12 February 2007 - 12:10 PM

From the Wren's nest
Who wants to buy a native Indian mound for $200,000? The South Florida Museum, which has placed the mound on sale, didn't have any interested parties yet Friday, officials said. But the fact that the 1-acre site is for sale has generated a great deal of interest from the American Indian Movement in Florida and a state archaeological group. They're extremely alarmed that the Pillsbury Temp

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