[Federal Register: October 2, 1996 (Volume 61, Number 192)]
[Notices]
[Page 51462-51463]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]

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DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR

Notice of Intent to Repatriate a Cultural Item in the Possession
of the City of Portland, OR

AGENCY: National Park Service, Interior.

ACTION: Notice.

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    Notice is hereby given under the Native American Graves Protection
and Repatriation Act, 25 U.S.C. 3005 (a)(2), of the intent to
repatriate a cultural item in the possession of the City of Portland,
OR, which meets the definition of ``sacred object'' and ``object of
cultural patrimony'' under Section 2 of the Act.
    A detailed assessment of the object was made by professional staff
of the

[[Page 51463]]

office of the Mayor in consultation with Officials of the Confederated
Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation and Confederated Tribes of
the Warm Springs Reservation. The Confederated Tribes and Bands of the
Yakama Indian Nation of the Yakama Reservation declined to participate
in the consultation.
    The object, know as the Wallula Stone, is an approximately ten ton
basalt boulder measuring 48'' by 73'' by 83''. The boulder is covered
with ancient petroglyphs. A bronze plaque on the upper face of the
boulder reads: ``Transported and Presented by the O.W.R. & N. Co. to
the Portland City Free Museum in 1910--C.F. Wiegand, Curator. Rock was
found in 1910--20 feet south of U.P.R.R. Track Mile Post 205.16 in
Washington.''
    In the spring of 1897, an engineering party discovered the boulder
while working on the Oregon Railway and Navigation Railroad. The
boulder was moved to the Portland city hall in 1910. A map from the
files of the former Portland commissioner of public works identifies
the original location of the boulder as about a mile north of the
Oregon/Washington border, just southeast of the Columbia River. The
geographic area in which the boulder was found was ceded to the United
States by the Umatilla Indian tribe in 1855. The area has also been
identified as part of the aboriginal territory of the Confederated
Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation in Confederated Tribes of
Warm Springs v. United States (1966). In his book Indian Relics of the
Pacific Northwest (2nd Edition, 1967), N.G. Seaman indicates that the
boulder marked a spot far from the village where young men were sent to
test their strength and courage. Traditional religious leaders from the
Umatilla and Warm Springs indicate that the boulder originally
identified a gathering place and sacred site and needs to be returned
to the area where it can again be used for those purposes. These
traditional religious leaders also indicate that the boulder was used
by many members of their tribes and could not have been sold or given
away by any single individual. As a product of the consultation the
representatives of the Confederated Tribes of the Warm Springs
Reservation concurred in repatriating the Wallula Stone to the
Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation.
    Based on the above-mentioned information, officials of the City of
Portland have determined that, pursuant to 25 U.S.C. 3001 (3)(C), this
cultural item is a specific ceremonial object needed by traditional
Native American religious leaders for the practice of traditional
Native American religions by their present-day adherents. City
officials have also determined that, pursuant to 25 U.S.C. 3001 (3)(D),
this cultural item has ongoing historical, traditional, and cultural
importance central to the culture itself, and could not have been
alienated, appropriated, or conveyed by any individual. Finally, city
officials 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 the boulder and the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla
Indian Reservation and Confederated Tribes of the Warm Springs
Reservation.
    This notice has been sent to officials of the Confederated Tribes
of the Umatilla Indian Reservation, Confederated Tribes of the Warm
Springs Reservation, and the Confederated Tribes and Bands of the
Yakama Indian Nation of the Yakama Reservation. Representatives of any
other Indian tribe that believes itself to be culturally affiliated
with this object should contact Michael Mills, Ombudsman, Mayor Katz's
Office, Interim City Hall, 1400 SW Fifth Avenue, Room 501, Portland,
Oregon, (503) 823-4120 before November 1, 1996 Repatriation of this
object to the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation
may be finalized after that date if no additional claimants come
forward.
Dated: September 27, 1996,
C. Timothy McKeown,
Acting, Departmental Consulting Archeologist,
Acting Manager, Archeology and Ethnography Program.
[FR Doc. 96-25238 Filed 10-1-96; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4310-70-F

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