News Release

National Park Service Provides $1.6 Million in Grants for the Return of Native American Remains and Sacred Objects

NPS staff with Tlingit clan hat
NPS staff with Tlingit clan hat

NPS Photo

News Release Date: September 7, 2018


WASHINGTON -- The National Park Service announced today $1,657,000 in Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act grants to return ancestral remains and cultural items to Indian tribes and Native Hawaiian organizations.

"Through these grants the National Park Service works with tribes, museums, and partners to facilitate the return of sacred objects and ancestral remains to native peoples," said National Park Service Deputy Director P. Daniel Smith.

The 16 repatriation grants will fund transportation and reburial of 243 ancestors and 2,268 cultural items. Funding will cover trips from Illinois to Washington, Alaska to Pennsylvania, and Oklahoma to New York, plus the cost of reburials in Colorado, Utah, and Wisconsin. In support of the repatriation process, the 19 consultation and documentation grants will provide funding for museum and tribal staff, travel, and where appropriate, collections digitization.

Enacted in 1990, the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act requires museums and Federal agencies to inventory and identify Native American human remains and cultural items in their collections, and to consult with Indian tribes and Native Hawaiian organizations regarding repatriation. Section 10 of the Act authorizes the Secretary of the Interior to award grants to assist in implementing provisions of the Act. The National NAGPRA Program is administered by the National Park Service.

Indian tribes and museums in Oklahoma will receive more than $450,000 in funding.
  • The Caddo Tribe of Oklahoma, Delaware Tribe of Indians, and Pawnee Tribe of Oklahoma will each send representatives to museums in states outside of Oklahoma, including Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, and Texas, to view and consult on their NAGPRA-related collections.
  • The Gilcrease Museum at the University of Tulsa and the Sam Noble Oklahoma Museum of Natural History at the University of Oklahoma will each host consultation visits with tribal partners, focusing on human remains and funerary objects in their collections that are of interest to tribes in Oklahoma.
  • Ball State University will provide travel funds and coordination for two meetings in Oklahoma to consult with the tribes whose traditional homelands are in Indiana.

FY 2018 NAGPRA Consultation/Documentation Grant Recipients
State Recipient Amount
Alaska Central Council Tlingit and Haida Indian Tribes of Alaska $89,592
California San Diego Museum of Man $89,793
California Table Mountain Rancheria Band of Indians $41,925
California Tolowa Dee-ni Nation $85,056
California Wilton Rancheria $89,638
Colorado Colorado Museum of Natural History $84,522
Colorado Regents of the University of Colorado $74,659
Iowa University of Iowa $87,568
Indiana Ball State University $37,268
Missouri University of Missouri System $32,000
New Mexico San Juan County Museum Association $69,932
Ohio Cincinnati Museum Center $90,000
Ohio Ohio Historical Society $88,248
Oklahoma Caddo Tribe of Oklahoma $67,466
Oklahoma Delaware Tribe of Indians $89,287
Oklahoma Gilcrease Museum Management Trust $80,939
Oklahoma Pawnee Tribe of Oklahoma $90,000
Oklahoma University of Oklahoma $89,999
Texas Texas A&M University $88,993
  Total $1,466,885

FY 2018 NAGPRA Repatriation Grant Recipients
State Recipient Amount
Alaska Sitka Tribe Of Alaska $14,833
Arizona University Of Arizona $15,000
California Pala Band Of Mission Indians $15,000
Colorado State Historical Society Of Colorado $14,673
Illinois Field Museum Of Natural History (receiving 2 awards) $12,691
Louisiana Coushatta Tribe Of Louisiana $14,998
Michigan Huron Potawatomi, Inc $15,000
Michigan Saginaw Chippewa Tribe of Michigan $3,552
Minnesota White Earth Band $7,290
New Mexico Pueblo Of San Felipe $15,000
Oklahoma Chickasaw Nation $14,999
Oklahoma Delaware Nation $15,000
Utah University Of Utah $13,654
Washington Swinomish Indian Tribal Community $13,002
Wisconsin Menominee Indian Tribe of Wisconsin $5,423
  Total $190,115
About the National Park Service. More than 20,000 National Park Service employees care for America's 417 national parks and work with communities across the nation to help preserve local history and create close-to-home recreational opportunities. Visit us at, on Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube

Last updated: September 12, 2018

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