What We Do

People sitting at several rows of tables with notebooks and papers.
"NAGPRA in the Parks" training at the Western Archeology and Conservation Center in 2010.

NPS Photo

Park NAGPRA assists parks and offices with NAGPRA compliance by providing technical advice, guidance, and training. Each of the seven NPS regions has a regional NAGPRA coordinator who works very closely with the Park NAGPRA program to make sure that parks meet the requirements of the law. Generally, parks consult directly with tribes on NAGPRA issues, and Park NAGPRA assists as needed.

The program conducts multiple training sessions each year. Some classes take place at parks or regional headquarters. Others occur online and are open to all staff, no matter where they are located.

Assistance is always available to NPS personnel in the form of written guidance. Park NAGPRA maintains and makes available, online and by request, Guidance for National Park Service Compliance with the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act (NAGPRA); NPS Cultural Resource Management Guideline, Appendix R; Revised June 2017 (PDF file, approximately 1.2 MB). Staff can review Appendix R as needed for answers to common questions and direction for standard processes.

When questions arise for unique or unusual situations, Park NAGPRA works closely with regional NAGPRA coordinators to advise region and park staff on how to proceed. Our job is to help work through any NAGPRA compliance issues, from simple to complex.

Since NAGPRA was enacted in 1990, NPS has transferred the remains of more than 4,000 Native American individuals along with more than 45,000 funerary objects to lineal descendants, Indian tribes, and Native Hawaiian organizations.

Last updated: February 26, 2018