[Federal Register: December 13, 1996 (Volume 61, Number 241)]
[Notices]
[Page 65597]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]

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DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR

Notice of Inventory Completion for Native American Human Remains
in the Possession of the National Park Service, Little Bighorn
Battlefield National Monument, Crow Agency, MT

AGENCY: National Park Service,

ACTION: Notice.

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    Notice is hereby given in accordance with provisions of the Native
American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act (NAGPRA), 25 U.S.C.
3003 (d), of the completion of an inventory of human remains in the
possession of the National Park Service, Little Bighorn Battlefield
National Monument, Crow Agency, MT.
    A detailed assessment of the human remains was made by National
Park Service professional staff in consultation with representatives of
the Arapahoe Tribe of the Wind River Reservation of Wyoming,
Assiniboine and Sioux Tribes of Montana, Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe of
South Dakota, Crow Tribe of Montana, Northern Cheyenne Tribe of
Montana, Oglala Sioux Tribe of South Dakota, Rosebud Sioux Tribe of
South Dakota, Santee Sioux Tribe of Nebraska, Sisseton-Wahpeton Sioux
Tribe of Sioux Dakota, Three Affiliated Tribes (Arikara, Hidatsa, and
Mandan), and Upper Sioux Indian Community of Minnesota. Representatives
of the Blackfeet Tribe of Montana were invited to consultation meetings
but did not attend.
    In the 1890s, human remains representing a minimum of one
individual were recovered from an unknown location in the area of
Little Bighorn Battlefield by Howard Means, a surveyor. No individuals
were identified. No associated funerary objects are present. Mr. Means'
great-grandnephew and wife returned the remains, consisting of a skull
and 2 femora, to the park in February 1996.
    Results of non-destructive analysis of the remains suggest
affiliation with the Sonota complex, a Middle Woodland group that
occupied the western reaches of present-day North and South Dakota,
including the Missouri River Basin, from approximately 90 AD to 600 AD.
In general, the remains appear to be affiliated with Woodland groups as
well as late prehistoric groups from the Northwestern Plains such as
the Blackfeet, Crow, and Hidatsa. Historically, this area was inhabited
by the Blackfeet, Crow, and Hidatsa, as well as the Arikara, Cheyenne,
Mandan, and Sioux. Physical anthropological evidence suggests that the
remains are most likely affiliated with the Crow or Hidatsa. Oral
evidence from all tribes attending consultation meetings, and from the
Blackfeet as well, supports this conclusion.
    Based on the above-mentioned information, officials of the National
Park Service have determined that, pursuant to 43 CFR 10.2 (d)(1), the
human remains listed above represent the physical remains of a minimum
of one individual of Native American ancestry. Officials of the
National Park Service have determined that, pursuant to 25 U.S.C. 3001
(2), there is a relationship of shared group identity which can be
reasonably traced between these Native American human remains and the
Crow Tribe and the Hidatsa of the Three Affiliated Tribes.
    This notice has been sent to officials of the Arapahoe Tribe of the
Wind River Reservation of Wyoming, Assiniboine and Sioux Tribes of
Montana, Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe of South Dakota, Crow Tribe of
Montana, Northern Cheyenne Tribe of Montana, Oglala Sioux Tribe of
South Dakota, Rosebud Sioux Tribe of South Dakota, Santee Sioux Tribe
of Nebraska, Sisseton-Wahpeton Sioux Tribe of Sioux Dakota, Three
Affiliated Tribes (Arikara, Hidatsa, and Mandan), and Upper Sioux
Indian Community of Minnesota, and the Blackfeet Tribe of Montana.
Representatives of any other Indian tribe that believes itself to be
culturally affiliated with these human remains should contact Gerard A.
Baker, Superintendent, Little Bighorn National Monument, P.O. Box 39,
Crow Agency, MT 59022; telephone: (406) 638-2621, before January 13,
1997. Repatriation of the human remains to the Crow Tribe and Three
Affiliated Tribes will begin after that if no additional claimants come
forward.
Dated: December 9, 1996,
Veletta Canouts,
Acting, Departmental Consulting Archeologist,
Deputy Manager, Archeology and Ethnography Program.
[FR Doc. 96-31741 Filed 12-12-96; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4310-70-F

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