FR Doc 2010-17483[Federal Register: July 19, 2010 (Volume 75, Number 137)]
[Notices]               
[Page 41883-41884]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]
[DOCID:fr19jy10-94]                         

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DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR

National Park Service
 
Notice of Inventory Completion: Museum of Anthropology, 
Washington State University Pullman, WA

AGENCY: National Park Service, Interior.

ACTION: Notice.
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    Notice is here given in accordance with the Native American Graves 
Protection and Repatriation Act (NAGPRA), 25 U.S.C. 3003, of the 
completion of an inventory of Native American human remains and 
associated funerary objects in the possession and control of the Museum 
of Anthropology, Washington State University, Pullman, WA. The human 
remains and associated funerary objects were removed from an unknown 
site in central Washington State and Asotin County, WA.
    This notice is published as part of the National Park Service's 
administrative responsibilities under NAGPRA, 25 U.S.C. 3003(d)(3). The 
determinations in this notice are the sole responsibility of the 
museum, institution, or Federal agency that has control of the Native 
American human remains and associated funerary objects. The National 
Park Service is not responsible for the determinations in this notice.
    A detailed assessment of the human remains was made by Museum of 
Anthropology, Washington State University, professional staff in 
consultation with representatives of the Confederated Tribes of the 
Colville Reservation, Washington; Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla 
Indian Reservation, Oregon; Confederated Tribes of the Warm Springs 
Reservation of Oregon; Confederated Tribes and Bands of the Yakama 
Nation, Washington; Nez Perce Tribe, Idaho; and the Wanapum Band, a 
non-federally recognized Indian group.
    In June and July of 1951, human remains representing a minimum of 
two individuals were removed from the Steptoe Burial site (45AS2), in 
Asotin County, WA. The burials were removed as part of an archeological 
study performed by the Department of Anthropology at Washington State 
University under the direction of Dr. Richard Daugherty. No known 
individuals were identified. The 57 associated funerary objects are 4 
projectile points, 2 scrapers, 1 bone scraper handle, 1 lot of mussel 
shells, 1 lot of red ochre, 2 bone awls, 1 lot of charcoal, 1 pestle, 2 
lots of cedar wood fragments, 3 lots of shell beads, 1 stone bead 
necklace, 2 bifaces, 5 lots of bag residue, 4 lots of animal bones, 1 
stone net sinker, 1 lot of tin can fragments, 2 fragments of flatware, 
1 lot of buttons, 6 lots of fabric fragments, 3 lots of nails, 2 lots 
of metal fragments, 3 lots of glass beads, 3 lots of modified wood 
fragments, and 5 lots of leather fragments.
    The burial pattern recorded by the excavators and the character of 
the extant funerary items indicate that these remains are Native 
American and that they date to the Late Prehistoric Period on the 
southern Plateau. The site is in the vicinity of several 
ethnographically known communities whom anthropologists have 
characterized as ancestral to the Nez Perce. The Nez Perce are members 
of the Federally-recognized Nez Perce Tribe, Idaho, and 1 of the 12 
bands of the Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation. The site 
is also within the overlapping 19th century territories of the Nez 
Perce and Palus (Sprague 1998; Walker 1998). Descendents of these 
communities are known to be members of the Confederated Tribes of the 
Colville Reservation, Washington; Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla 
Indian Reservation, Oregon; Confederated Tribes of the Warm Springs 
Reservation of Oregon; Confederated Tribes and Bands of the Yakama 
Nation, Washington; Nez Perce Tribe, Idaho; and the Wanapum Band, a 
non-federally recognized Indian group.
    In 2001, a small jar of fragmentary human remains representing a 
minimum of two individuals was found in the museum storage facility, 
but the remains were likely removed from Columbia Point, Asotin County, 
WA. The jar was labeled "Columbia Point 80-24." Also contained in the 
jar was one lot of soil from which the bones were removed. Between 1977 
and 1979, archeological studies were performed at Columbia Point by the 
Mid-Columbia Archaeological Society. The site had been heavily 
disturbed by looting. The number 80-24 is reminiscent of a collection 
numbering system used by the Museum of Anthropology between the 1950s 
and 1980s. The first part of the number represents the last two digits 
of the year the materials were collected and the numbers after the dash 
represent the order in which the collections were recorded during that 
year. This contextual information strongly suggests that the remains 
are Native American. No known individuals were identified. The 
associated funerary object is a soil sample.
    Columbia Point has been determined eligible for listing on the 
National Register of Historic Places as a traditional cultural 
property. Columbia Point is located at the mouth of the Yakima River, 
which is upstream and across the Columbia River from the confluence of 
the Snake and Columbia Rivers. Ethnographic and historic records 
describe the area as a major traditional gathering place for fishing 
and trading. This area is located within the overlapping aboriginal 
territory of the Nez Perce, Palouse, Walla Walla, Wanapum, and Yakama. 
According to the "Indian Land Areas Judicially Established by the 
Indian Court of Claims 1978" at Index 96, as well as early and more 
recent ethnographic documentation, this area is within the aboriginal 
territory of the Walla Walla. Furthermore, early ethnographic evidence 
indicates that the Palouse, Wanapum, and Yakama also occupied this 
area. Descendants of the Palouse,

[[Page 41884]]

Walla Walla, Wanapum, and Yakama are members of the Confederated Tribes 
of the Colville Reservation, Washington; Confederated Tribes of the 
Umatilla Indian Reservation, Oregon; Confederated Tribes of the Warm 
Springs Reservation of Oregon; Confederated Tribes and Bands of the 
Yakama Nation, Washington; Nez Perce Tribe, Idaho; and the Wanapum 
Band, a non-federally recognized Indian group.
    In 2009, a detailed assessment was made of a complete skeleton of a 
juvenile that is cemented in the sediment in which it was originally 
buried. Retired faculty and former students were contacted and they 
recall that the skeleton was formerly in the lab of the late Dr. Grover 
Krantz. Dr. Krantz had described the skeleton as coming from an 
archeological site along the Columbia River in central Washington 
State. The character of the cemented sediment supports that the 
skeleton was buried in sandy river deposits. No known individual was 
identified. The associated funerary object is a necklace of dentalia 
shell.
    The association of these remains with an unknown archeological 
site, the semi-flexed position of the skeletal remains, and the 
presence of dentalia shell, which was a common funerary item during the 
Late Prehistoric Period on the southern Plateau, provide strong 
evidence that the remains are Native American. The identification of a 
general regional provenience for the human remains supports a cultural 
affiliation with any or all of those communities whose traditional 
territories included the Mid-Columbia region. These communities include 
the Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation, Washington; 
Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation, Oregon; 
Confederated Tribes of the Warm Springs Reservation of Oregon; 
Confederated Tribes and Bands of the Yakama Nation, Washington; Nez 
Perce Tribe, Idaho; and the Wanapum Band, a non-federally recognized 
Indian group.
    Officials of the Museum of Anthropology, Washington State 
University, have determined that, pursuant to 25 U.S.C. 3001(9), the 
human remains described above represent the physical remains of five 
individuals of Native American ancestry. Officials of the Museum of 
Anthropology, Washington State University, also have determined that, 
pursuant to 25 U.S.C. 3001(3)(A), the 59 objects described above are 
reasonably believed to have been placed with or near individual human 
remains at the time of death or later as part of the death rite or 
ceremony. Lastly, officials of the Museum of Anthropology, Washington 
State University, have determined that, pursuant to 25 U.S.C. 3001(2), 
there is a relationship of shared group identity that can be reasonably 
traced between the Native American human remains and associated 
funerary objects and the Confederated Tribes of the Colville 
Reservation, Washington; Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian 
Reservation, Oregon; Confederated Tribes of the Warm Springs 
Reservation of Oregon; Confederated Tribes and Bands of the Yakama 
Nation, Washington; Nez Perce Tribe, Idaho; and the Wanapum Band, a 
non-federally recognized Indian group.
    Representatives of any other Indian tribe that believes itself to 
be culturally affiliated with the human remains and associated funerary 
objects should contact Mary Collins, WSU Museum of Anthropology, PO Box 
644910, Pullman, WA 99164, telephone (509) 335-4314, before August 16, 
2010. Repatriation of the human remains and associated funerary objects 
to the Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation, Washington; 
Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation, Oregon; 
Confederated Tribes of the Warm Springs Reservation of Oregon; 
Confederated Tribes and Bands of the Yakama Nation, Washington; Nez 
Perce Tribe, Idaho; and the Wanapum Band, a non-federally recognized 
Indian group, may proceed after that date if no additional claimants 
come forward.
    The Museum of Anthropology is responsible for notifying the 
Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation, Washington; 
Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation, Oregon; 
Confederated Tribes of the Warm Springs Reservation of Oregon; 
Confederated Tribes and Bands of the Yakama Nation, Washington; Nez 
Perce Tribe, Idaho; and the Wanapum Band, a non-federally recognized 
Indian group, this notice has been published.

    Dated: July 9, 2010
Sherry Hutt,
Manager, National NAGPRA Program.
[FR Doc. 2010-17483 Filed 7-16-10; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4312-50-S


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