[Federal Register Volume 76, Number 229 (Tuesday, November 29, 2011)]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2011-30618]
DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR
National Park Service
Notice of Intent to Repatriate Cultural Items: Tennessee Valley
Authority and the University of Tennessee McClung Museum, Knoxville, TN
AGENCY: National Park Service, Interior.
SUMMARY: The Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) and the University of
Tennessee McClung Museum (McClung Museum), in consultation with the
appropriate Indian tribes, have determined that the cultural items in
this notice meet the definition of unassociated funerary objects, and
repatriation to the Indian tribes stated below may occur if no
additional claimants come forward.
Representatives of any Indian tribe that believes itself to be
culturally affiliated with the cultural items may contact the TVA and
DATES: Representatives of any Indian tribe that believes it has a
cultural affiliation with the cultural items should contact TVA at the
address below by December 29, 2011.
ADDRESSES: Dr. Thomas O. Maher, TVA, 400 West Summit Hill Drive, WT
11D, Knoxville, TN 37902-1401, telephone (865) 632-7458.
SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 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 cultural items in the custody
of the McClung Museum and control of TVA, Knoxville, TN that meet the
definition of unassociated funerary 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
museum, institution, or Federal agency that has control of the Native
American cultural items. The National Park Service is not responsible
for the determinations in this notice.
History and Description of the Cultural Items
From 1967 through the mid 1980's, Native American graves were
excavated by professional archeologists from the McClung Museum during
TVA's construction of the Tellico reservoir. Five of these sites had
historic Overhill Cherokee occupations and graves: Chota, Tanasee,
Tomotley, Toqua and Citico. Based on an agreement between TVA and the
Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians of North Carolina, historic Cherokee
human remains recovered during the Tellico Reservoir project were
transferred to the Tribe for reburial in 1986. The objects from these
graves, however, continued to be curated by the McClung Museum. Since
neither TVA nor the McClung Museum has possession or control of the
human remains, the objects are unassociated funerary objects.
Based on both historical documents and oral tradition, the sites of
Chota, Tanasee, Tomotley, Toqua and Citico were known to have had
Cherokee occupations. Each village is illustrated in a map Lt. Henry
Timberlake drafted in 1762, based on his stay with the Cherokee in the
lower Little Tennessee River valley.
At the Chota site (40MR2) 54 graves from the historic Overhill
Cherokee occupation were excavated. The unassociated funerary objects
from these graves include 485 metal artifacts comprised of buttons,
bells, nails, rings, buckles, axes, knives and musket balls made from
iron, brass, pewter, silver and lead; three glass mirrors or mirror
fragments; six glass vessel fragments; one glass bottle; twelve mineral
samples including vermillion, barite, and one unshaped piece of smelted
lead; four steatite pipes; one catlinite pipe; two clay siltstone
pipes; three projectile points; two chert flakes; cloth fragments; one
wooden fire horn plug; one conch shell ear pin; a deer metapodial bone;
approximately 18,444 glass beads of varying size and color; and 36
beads made from shell.
The Tanasee site (40MR62) is immediately adjacent to the Chota site
and initial excavations did not distinguish between them. Seventeen
graves are attributed to the Overhill Cherokee occupation at the
Tanasee site. The unassociated funerary objects from these graves
include 21 projectile points; one chipped stone flake; ten metal
objects including brass buttons, a brass arrow point, a brass rumbler
bell, iron scissors, strike-a-light and knife blade and other iron and
brass fragments; animal bone fragments; one bone comb; one pottery
sherd; approximately 10,748 glass beads of various sizes and colors;
and 10 beads made from conch shells.
The Tomotley site (40MR5) was excavated as a result of the Tellico
Reservoir project. Nineteen graves are attributed to the historic
Overhill Cherokee occupation of the site. The funerary objects from
these graves include 216 metal objects comprised of iron tacks, knives,
a straight razor, needle shanks, and a bayonet; silver objects include
a ring, ear rings, brooches and shirt sleeve links; brass wire; brass
sheet fragments; one brass necklace; pewter shirt sleeve links; one
copper tube; one lead shot and ball; 30 fragments of glass; one glass
mirror fragment; botanical remains including burned wood and seven
cloth fragments; two lots of vermillion; one piece of lead; one chipped
stone gun flint; approximately 8,545 glass beads; one shell bead; and
39 copper beads.
The Toqua site (40MR6) was excavated as a result of the Tellico
Reservoir project. Nineteen graves are attributed to the historic
Overhill Cherokee occupation of the site. Unassociated funerary objects
include 52 pieces of metal comprised of four brass buttons, a bell,
wire, bracelets, disks, ornaments, one gun part, one iron gun barrel,
strike-a-light, scissors, one hoe, two pewter buttons, a copper kettle,
a silver brooch, and three lead musket balls; two projectile points;
three gun flints; five chipped stone objects; six shell pendants; three
pieces of glass; three samples of red ochre; three mink skull
fragments; one piece of cord possibly used with a tinkler;
approximately 11,294 glass beads of various sizes and colors; and six
The Citico site (40MR7) was excavated as a result of the Tellico
Reservoir project. There were twenty-five graves attributed to the
historic Overhill Cherokee occupation of the site. The unassociated
funerary objects from these graves include 145 objects made of metal
including copper objects comprised of five bells, beads, cones used as
tinklers, five rings, tubes and pendants; brass items comprised of
``C'' bracelets, 28 buttons, and a neck collar ornament; iron items
comprised of two razors, ``C'' bracelets, cones used as tinklers,
finger rings, a knife, an awl with a bone handle and an axe; three
silver tube beads; animal bone; two bone or antler ear pins; leather
fragments; five samples of vermillion and red ochre; one quartz
crystal; fabric fragments; wood pieces; three shell gorgets; two shell
ear pins; one shell bead; one steatite pipe; one ground whetstone; and
approximately 3,949 glass beads of various sizes and colors.
Determinations Made by the TVA and McClung Museum
Officials of the TVA and McClung Museum have determined that:
Pursuant to 25 U.S.C. 3001(3)(B), the approximately 54,000
cultural items of which approximately 53,000 are glass beads described
above are reasonably believed to have been placed with or near
individual human remains at the time of death or later as part of the
death rite or ceremony and are believed, by a preponderance of the
evidence, to have been removed from a specific burial site of a Native
Pursuant to 25 U.S.C. 3001(2), there is a relationship of
shared group identity that can be reasonably traced between the
unassociated funerary objects above and the Cherokee Nation, Oklahoma;
Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians of North Carolina; and the United
Keetoowah Band of Cherokee Indians in Oklahoma (hereinafter referred to
as ``The Tribes'').
Additional Requestors and Disposition
Representatives of any other Indian tribe that believes itself to
be culturally affiliated with the unassociated funerary objects should
contact Dr. Thomas O. Maher, TVA, 400 West Summit Hill Drive, WT 11D,
Knoxville, TN 37902-
1401, telephone (865) 632-7458 before December 29, 2011. Repatriation
of the unassociated funerary objects to The Tribes may proceed after
that date if no additional claimants come forward.
The TVA is responsible for notifying The Tribes that this notice
has been published.
Dated: November 22, 2011.
Manager, National NAGPRA Program.
[FR Doc. 2011-30618 Filed 11-28-11; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4312-50-P
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