FR Doc 2010-6562[Federal Register: March 25, 2010 (Volume 75, Number 57)]
[Page 14460-14461]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access []



National Park Service
Notice of Intent to Repatriate Cultural Items: U.S. Department of 
the Interior, National Park Service, Grand Teton National Park, Moose, 

AGENCY: National Park Service, Interior.

ACTION: Notice.


    Notice is here given in accordance with the Native American Graves 
Protection and Repatriation Act (NAGPRA), 25 U.S.C. 3005, of the intent 
to repatriate three cultural items in the possession of the U.S. 
Department of the Interior, National Park Service, Grand Teton National 
Park, WY, that meet the definition of "sacred objects" under 25 
U.S.C. 3001.
    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 
superintendent, Grand Teton National Park.
    The three cultural items are two medicine masks and one turtle 
rattle. The two masks are carved from wood, painted, and have white 
horsehair attached. The rattle is made from a turtle shell. Its handle 
is made from the head and neck of the turtle, which are braced with 
wooden splints and wrapped with leather. The three cultural items are 
part of the David T. Vernon Collection, comprising 1,429 items of 
Native American art and artifacts representing more than 200 North 
American tribes. The objects in the collection were purchased by David 
T. Vernon from native people and collectors during the 1920s-1950s. On 
December 13, 1976, Laurance S. Rockefeller donated the David T. Vernon 
Collection to Grand Teton National Park.
    Museum records state that the three cultural items were made by 
Seneca Indians and purchased in New York between 1920 and 1930. Records 
also indicate that both masks and the rattle are from the Cattaraugus 
area and identify the maker of one mask as Roger Lay and the maker of 
the rattle as Joe Hemlock. Tribal representatives of the Seneca Nation 
of New York have identified these three cultural items as "sacred 
objects" coming from the Cattaraugus Reservation. The three items are 
clearly identifiable as part of the Seneca "False Face Society." 
Medicine masks, also called "false faces", are sacred objects which 
belong to a society which still functions at the Newtown Longhouse on 
the Cattaraugus territory of the Seneca Nation of New York. Turtle 
rattles are the instrument of the medicine masks; both are used for the 
benefit of the people in traditional ceremonial practices. Descendents 
of the makers - Roger Lay and Joe Hemlock - reside on the Cattaraugas 
Reservation of the Seneca Nation of New York.
    Officials of Grand Teton National Park have determined that, 
pursuant to 25 U.S.C. 3001 (3)(C), the three cultural items described 
above are specific ceremonial objects needed by traditional Native 
American religious leaders for the practice of traditional Native 
American religions by their present-day adherents. Officials of Grand 
Teton National Park also 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 sacred objects and the Seneca Nation of 
New York.
    Representatives of any other Indian tribe that believes itself to 
be culturally affiliated with the sacred objects should contact Mary 
Gibson Scott, Superintendent, Grand Teton National Park, P.O. Drawer 
170, Moose, WY

[[Page 14461]]

83012, telephone (307) 739- 3410, before April 26, 2010. Repatriation 
of the sacred objects to the Seneca Nation of New York may proceed 
after that date if no additional claimants come forward.
    Grand Teton National Park is responsible for notifying the Seneca 
Nation of New York, Seneca-Cayuga Tribe of Oklahoma, and Tonawanda Band 
of Seneca Indians of New York that this notice has been published.

    Dated: February 22, 2010
Sherry Hutt,
Manager, National NAGPRA Program.
[FR Doc. 2010-6562 Filed 3-24-10; 8:45 am]

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