Indian Burial and Sacred Grounds Watch

indexmission
siteslearnactionlinkscontact

Subjects

Federal laws

State laws

Some preserved sites.

Some history and culture

Controversies Concerning Archaeology

American Indian Voices

News Archive Index

Return to main Learn page


Please inform the webmaster of any broken links!

The Law and American Indian Grave Protection

Oregon Laws

Indian Graves and Protected Objects.
For more, see Oregon's State Historic Preservation Office Law page.

Summaries follow of burial/archaeological laws yielded through a keyword search for "archaeology" and "burial" on 2001 March 30 at the State Historic Preservation Legislation Database found at the NCSL (National Conference of State Legislatures) web site, that database then updated through 1999. These summaries are reprinted under the Fair Use doctrine of international copyright law which may be found at www4.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.html

http://www.ibsgwatch.org is not responsible for any inaccuracies or timeliness of information.


Code Book: Oregon Revised Statutes
Citation: 97.745
Section Title: Indian graves and protected objects: prohibited acts

Summary:

Declares that no person shall willfully remove, mutilate, deface, injure or destroy a cairn, burial, human remains, funerary object, sacred object or object of cultural patrimony of any native Indian. Requires persons who disturb native Indian cairns or burials through inadvertence, including by construction, mining, logging or agricultural activity, to reinter the human remains or funerary objects at their own expense under the supervision of the appropriate Indian tribe. Declares that no person shall: possess any native Indian artifacts, human remains or funerary object having been taken from a native Indian cairn or burial, except as permitted by 97.750; public display or exhibit any native Indian human remains, funerary object, sacred object or object of cultural patrimony; sell any native Indian artifacts, human remains or funerary object having been taken from a native Indian cairn or burial or sell any sacred object or object of cultural patrimony. Exempts from the provisions of this section the possession or sale of native Indian artifacts discovered in or taken from locations other than native Indian cairns or burials, and actions taken in the performance of official law enforcement duties. Requires any discovered human remains suspected to be native Indian to be reported to the state police, the state historic preservation officer, the appropriate Indian tribe and the Commission on Indian Services.

Primary Topic: Archeological Activities

    Secondary Topic:
    • Disposition of Human Remains

Code Book: Oregon Revised Statutes
Citation: 97.750
Section Title: Indian graves and protected objects: permitted acts

Summary:

Requires any proposed excavation by a professional archeologist of a native Indian cairn or burial to be initiated only after prior written notification to the state historic preservation officer and the state police, and with the prior written consent of the appropriate Indian tribe in the vicinity of the intended action, with a response from the tribe required within thirty days of the mailing of such a request. Requires that all associated material objects, funerary objects and human remains removed during such an excavation shall be reinterred at the archeologist's expense under the supervision of the tribe. Requires the archeologist or other person, in determining the appropriate tribe, to consult with the Commission on Indian Services, which shall designate the appropriate tribe.

Primary Topic: Archeological Activities

    Secondary Topic:
    • Disposition of Human Remains
    • Permit / Site Investigation Authority

Code Book: Oregon Revised Statutes
Citation: 97.760
Section Title: Indian graves and protected objects: civil action

Summary:

Authorizes an Indian tribe or an enrolled member thereof to have a civil action to secure an injunction, damages or other appropriate relief against a person who is alleged to have violated 97.745, in addition to any criminal prosecution. Requires the action to be brought within two years of the discovery of the violation by the plaintiff and to be filed in the circuit court of the county in which the subject grave, cairn, remains or artifacts are located, or within which the defendant resides. Allows a conviction under 97.990 (5) to stand as prima facie evidence of a violation of 97.745 in an action brought under this section. Authorizes the court, if the plaintiff prevails, to grant injunctive or such other equitable relief as is appropriate, including forfeiture of any artifacts or remains acquired or equipment used in the violation, and to order disposition of any forfeited items as it sees fit, including the reinterment of any human remains. Allows the plaintiff, if the plaintiff prevails, to recover imputed damages in an amount not to exceed $10,000 or actual damages, including damages for emotional distress, whichever is greater, and to recover punitive damages upon proof that the violation was willful. Allows the award of imputed or punitive damages to be made only once for a particular violation by a particular person, but does not preclude the award of such damages based on violations by other persons or on other violations.

Primary Topic: Archeological Activities

    Secondary Topic:
    • Disposition of Human Remains
    • Violation / Penalty / Enforcement

Code Book: Oregon Revised Statutes
Citation: 97.990
Section Title: Indian graves and protected objects: penalties

Summary:

(5) Declares the willful removal, mutilation, defacing, injury or destruction of a cairn, burial, human remains, funerary object, sacred object or object of cultural patrimony of any native Indian pursuant to 97.745 to be a Class C felony. Authorizes a judge to impose a penalty not to exceed $10,000 on any person convicted of a violation of 97.745. (6) Authorizes the court, in addition to the penalty of subsection 5, to order the forfeiture of any native Indian artifacts or human remains taken by or in possession of such person and all equipment used in the violation, to be disposed of as the court directs.

Primary Topic: Archeological Activities

    Secondary Topic:
    • Disposition of Human Remains
    • Violation / Penalty / Enforcement

Code Book: Oregon Revised Statutes
Citation: 273.718 through 273.742
Section Title: Treasure trove

Summary:

(273.718) Defines "treasure trove" as money, coin, gold, silver, precious jewels, plate and bullion found hidden in the earth or other private place where the true owner is unknown. (273.728) Prohibits any person from exploring for or removing any goods, money or treasure trove on lands owned by the state without a permit from the director of state lands. Requires applicants for such a permit to apply to the director on a form prescribed by the director. Requires the permittee to notify the director of the discovery of any goods, money or treasure trove having a value of more than $500, and to provide a description and location of such goods, money or treasure trove. Declares that any goods, money or treasure trove removed by a person from lands owned by the state without a permit or in a manner contrary to the conditions of any permit shall be disposed of by the Division of State Lands as property of the state, and such proceeds shall accrue to the Common School Fund. (273.733) Requires any person who discovers goods, money or treasure trove with a value of over $500 on state owned lands to notify immediately the director, in writing. (273.737) Requires the director, if unable to ascertain the identity of the true owner, to take possession of such goods, money or treasure trove for the state, and such proceeds shall accrue to the Common School Fund. Requires the director, upon receipt of such goods, to determine whether the property is of sufficient historical value to justify its placement in a museum, and, if so, to designate which museum. (273.742) Allows the finder of any goods, money or treasure trove delivered to the director to make a claim to the Division of State Lands of up to $5,000 plus not more than 50% of the value of such goods, money or treasure trove over $5,000.

Primary Topic: Archeological Activities

    Secondary Topic:
    • Permit / Site Investigation Authority

Code Book: Oregon Revised Statutes
Citation: 352.045
Section Title: Oregon State Museum of Anthropology

Summary:

(1) Designates and establishes the anthropology collections at the University of Oregon as the Oregon State Museum of Anthropology, which shall be the official depository for any material of an archeological or anthropological nature that may come into the possession of the state through the operation of 358.935, 390.235 or 390.237 or as a consequence of gifts from the federal government, the Smithsonian Institution or from other public or private agencies. Directs the university to assume full responsibility for the custody and safekeeping of the collection. Establishes the Oregon State Museum of Anthropology as the ultimate depository for any items reassigned under 390.235 in the event that the assigned curator is unable or fails to continue that responsibility. (2) Declares that 390.235 or 390.237 or this section shall not interfere with any collections now in the possession of any institution of higher learning in Oregon, nor prevent any private person making a gift of any collection owned by the person directly to any institution.

Primary Topic: Archeological Activities

    Secondary Topic:
    • Curation / Ownership of Artifacts

Code Book: Oregon Revised Statutes
Citation: 358.905
Section Title: Archeological objects and sites: definitions (selected)

Summary:

Defines "archeological object" as an object that is: at least 75 years old; part of the physical record of an indigenous or other culture found in the state or the waters of the state; or material remains of past human life or activity that are of archeological significance. Defines "site of archeological significance" as an archeological site listed in or eligible for the national or state registers of historic places or any site that has been determined significant in writing by an Indian tribe. Defines "archeological site" as a geographic locality in Oregon, including but not limited to submerged and submersible lands and the bed of the sea within the state's jurisdiction that contains archeological objects and the contextual associations of those objects, including shipwrecks, lithic quarries, house pit villages, camps, burials, lithic scatters, homesteads and townsites. Defines an "object of cultural patrimony" as an object having ongoing historical, traditional or cultural importance central to the native Indian group or culture itself, rather than property owned by an individual native Indian, and which, therefore, cannot be alienated, appropriated or conveyed by an individual regardless of whether or not the individual is a member of the tribe. Requires such objects to have been considered inalienable by the native Indian group at the time the object was separated from such group. Defines a "sacred object" as an archeological object or other object that: is demonstrably revered as holy by any ethnic group, religious group or Indian tribe; is used in connection with the religious or spiritual service or worship of a deity or spirit power; or is or was needed by traditional native Indian religious leaders for the practice of traditional native Indian religion.

Primary Topic: Archeological Activities

    Secondary Topic:
    • Curation / Ownership of Artifacts
    • Permit / Site Investigation Authority

Code Book: Oregon Revised Statutes
Citation: 358.920 through 358.923
Section Title: Archeological objects and sites: prohibited conduct; when collection may be held notwithstanding 358.920

Summary:

(358.920)(1) Prohibits a person from excavating, injuring, destroying or altering an archeological site or object or removing an archeological object located on public or private lands in the state unless that activity is authorized by a permit issued under 390.235. Permits the collection of an arrowhead from the surface of public or private land without the use of any tool. (2) Prohibits a person from selling, purchasing, trading, bartering or exchanging, or from offering to do so, any archeological object that has been removed from an archeological site on public land or obtained from private land within the state without the written permission of the owner. (3) Prohibits a person from selling, purchasing, trading, bartering or exchanging, or from offering to do so, any archeological object unless the person furnishes the purchaser a certificate of origin. Requires, for objects obtained from public land, such certificate to include: a statement that the object was originally acquired before October 31, 1983; location obtained and a statement on how the object came into the current owner's possession; and a statement that the object is not human remains, a funerary or sacred object, or an object of cultural patrimony. Requires, for objects obtained from private land, such certificate to include: a statement that the object is not human remains, a funerary or sacred object, or an object of cultural patrimony; and a copy of the written permission of the landowner. (4)(a) Directs that objects acquired after October 15, 1983, from public lands are under the stewardship of the state and shall be delivered to the Oregon State Museum of Anthropology. Directs the museum to work with the appropriate Indian tribe and other interested parties to develop appropriate curatorial facilities for artifacts and other material records, photographs and documents relating to the cultural or historic properties in the state. Requires, in general, that artifacts be curated as close to the community of their origin as their proper care allows. Authorizes the museum, after consultation with the appropriate Indian tribe, to enter into agreements with organizations outside the state to provide curatorial services if it is not feasible to curate artifacts within the state. (b) States that an object that is human remains, a funerary or sacred object, or an object of cultural patrimony shall be dealt with according to 97.740-97.760. (5) Prohibits a person from excavating an archeological site on privately owned property without the property owner's written permission. (6) Requires a person, if human remains are encountered during excavations of an archeological site, to stop excavation and report the find to the landowner, the state police, the state historic preservation officer and the Commission on Indian Services. (7) Declares that this section does not apply to a person who disturbs an Indian cairn or burial. States that such person shall comply with 97.740-97.760 and 97.990(5)(b). (8) Declares that violation of this section is a Class B misdemeanor. (358.923) Allows any collection of objects described in 358.920(3) and (4) to be held if the collection: (1) is kept within the state; (2) is curated under customary museum standards; and (3) is available for nondestructive study by museums and educational institutions located in the state.

Primary Topic: Archeological Activities

    Secondary Topic:
    • Curation / Ownership of Artifacts
    • Permit / Site Investigation Authority
    • Private Funds
    • Private Property
    • Violation / Penalty / Enforcement

Code Book: Oregon Revised Statutes
Citation: 358.925 through 358.935
Section Title: Archeological objects and sites: seizure of archeological objects; forfeiture; procedure

Summary:

Declares that all archeological objects or proceeds from the sale of archeological objects in the possession of any person in violation of 358.905-358.955 or 390.235 shall be seized by any police officer. Declares that all property, real or personal, including money, used in the course of, derived from or realized through conduct in violation of 358.905-358.955 or 390.235 is subject to civil forfeiture to the state or appropriate Indian tribe. Authorizes a police officer to seize property subject to forfeiture without court process if the seizure is incident to a lawful arrest or search or an inspection under warrant, or if the property subject to seizure has been the subject of a prior judgment in favor of the state in a forfeiture proceeding based upon this section. Allows the attorney general, any district attorney or any state agency having jurisdiction over conduct in violation of 358.905-358.955 or 390.235 and an appropriate Indian tribe to institute civil proceedings under this section. Allows such proceedings to be commenced at any time within five years of the violation.

Primary Topic: Archeological Activities

    Secondary Topic:
    • Violation / Penalty / Enforcement

Code Book: Oregon Revised Statutes
Citation: 358.940
Section Title: Archeological objects and sites: reinterment required; notice to appropriate Indian tribe or Commission on Indian Services

Summary:

(1) Requires a person who disturbs native Indian remains or a funerary object at or associated with an archeological site to reinter at the person's expense those remains or funerary objects under the supervision of an Indian tribe provided in 97.750. (2) Directs that any native Indian sacred or funerary object or object of cultural patrimony shall be reported to the appropriate Indian tribe and the Commission on Indian Services. Directs the appropriate Indian tribe, with the assistance of the state historic preservation officer, to arrange for the return of any objects to the appropriate Indian tribe.

Primary Topic: Archeological Activities

    Secondary Topic:
    • Disposition of Human Remains

Code Book: Oregon Revised Statutes
Citation: 358.945
Section Title: Archeological objects and sites: notice required upon finding of object; exception

Summary:

Requires a person conducting an archeological investigation on public lands according to the provisions of 390.235 or on private land with the owner's written permission finds a sacred object or object of cultural patrimony to notify in writing the state historic preservation officer and the appropriate ethnic group, religious group or Indian tribe that is associated with the object. Directs the SHPO to assist the appropriate group to repossess the object. Declares that this section does not apply to the contents an Indian cairn or burial regulated under 97.740-97.760 and 97.990(5)(b). Declares that failure to notify the appropriate Indian tribe is a Class B misdemeanor.

Primary Topic: Archeological Activities

    Secondary Topic:
    • Violation / Penalty / Enforcement

Code Book: Oregon Revised Statutes
Citation: 358.953
Section Title: Archeological objects and sites: compensation to property owner deprived of lawful use of property; expense of removal

Summary:

(1) Requires the state to compensate a property owner who is deprived of an otherwise lawful use of private property under the provisions of 358.905-358.955. (2) Requires an Indian tribe to pay the expenses of removal if human remains, funerary or sacred objects, or objects of cultural patrimony are removed from private property at a tribe's request and to restore, at the tribe's expense, the private property to its condition prior to the removal.

Primary Topic: Archeological Activities

    Secondary Topic:
    • Private Funds
    • Private Property

Code Book: Oregon Revised Statutes
Citation: 358.955
Section Title: Archeological objects and sites: civil enforcement

Summary:

Allows any person or the attorney general, on behalf of the state, to institute a civil proceeding against a person who violates the provisions of 358.920, 358.945, 358.950, or 390.235. Allows a temporary restraining order or a preliminary injunction to be issued in any such action before a final determination.

Primary Topic: Archeological Activities

    Secondary Topic:
    • Violation / Penalty / Enforcement

Code Book: Oregon Revised Statutes
Citation: 358.930
Section Title: Archeological objects and sites: return of property to owner

Summary:

Allows the owner of any property seized under 358.925 to require the return thereof, before the entry of judgment, except where the property is identified as Indian human remains, a funerary or sacred object, or an object of cultural patrimony. Requires the owner to give to the court a written undertaking, executed by sufficient surety, bound in double the value of the property as determined by the court, for the delivery thereof to the plaintiff, if such delivery be adjudged, and for the payment to the plaintiff of such sum as may be recovered against the owner. (2) Requires the owner, if confiscation or forfeiture of such property is required by a judgment of the court under 358.925, to return the property to the plaintiff or appropriate Indian tribe. Allows any police officer to maintain an action upon such undertaking upon the owner's failure to return the property.

Primary Topic: Archeological Activities

    Secondary Topic:
    • Curation / Ownership of Artifacts
    • Violation / Penalty / Enforcement

Code Book: Oregon Revised Statutes
Citation: 358.935
Section Title: Archeological objects and sites: preservation of seized objects

Summary:

(1) Requires any archeological object or proceeds seized under 358.925 to be preserved and retained. Authorizes the court, upon sentencing the defendant or ordering forfeiture of bail, to order that any archeological object or proceeds from the sale of such object shall be forfeited. Directs the Oregon State Museum of Anthropology to retain any archeological object seized under 358.905-358.955 or 390.235. (2) Directs the state historic preservation officer, if any seized objects or proceeds are not subject to forfeiture, to return such objects or proceeds to the person from whom they were seized.

Primary Topic: Archeological Activities

    Secondary Topic:
    • Curation / Ownership of Artifacts

Code Book: Oregon Revised Statutes
Citation: 358.950
Section Title: Archeological objects and sites: when notice to Indian tribe required

Summary:

Requires a person conducting an archeological excavation associated with a prehistoric or historic American Indian archeological site shall notify the most appropriate Indian tribe. Requires the person conducting the excavation to consult a representative of the tribe to establish a procedure for handling sacred objects recovered during the excavation. Allows a delegate from the appropriate tribe to be present during the excavation. Directs the Commission on Indian Services, if requested, to assist a person in locating the appropriate tribe. Requires the person conducting the excavation to prepare and forward a copy of a report on excavation findings to the Commission on Indian Services and to the appropriate Indian tribe upon completion of the investigation. Declares that failure to notify the appropriate Indian tribe is a Class B misdemeanor.

Primary Topic: Archeological Activities

    Secondary Topic:
    • Permit / Site Investigation Authority
    • Violation / Penalty / Enforcement

Code Book: Oregon Revised Statutes
Citation: 358.910
Section Title: Archeological objects and sites: policy

Summary:

Acknowledges that archeological sites are a finite, irreplaceable and nonrenewable cultural resource and are an intrinsic part of the cultural heritage of the people of Oregon. Places archeological sites and their contents located on public lands under the stewardship of the people of Oregon to be protected and managed in perpetuity by the state as a public trust. Declares that the state shall preserve and protect the cultural heritage of the state embodied in objects and sites that are of archeological significance.

Primary Topic: Archeological Activities

    Secondary Topic:
    • Curation / Ownership of Artifacts
    • Permit / Site Investigation Authority

Code Book: Oregon Revised Statutes
Citation: 358.915
Section Title: Archeological objects and sites: application

Summary:

Declares that the provisions of 192.005, 192.501-192.505, 273.990, 358.905-358.955, and 390.235 do not apply to a person who unintentionally discovers an archeological object that has been exposed by the forces of nature on public land or private property and retains the object for personal use, except for sacred objects, human remains, funerary objects or objects of cultural patrimony.

Primary Topic: Archeological Activities

    Secondary Topic:
    • Curation / Ownership of Artifacts

Code Book: Oregon Revised Statutes
Citation: 390.235 through 390.240
Section Title: Archeological sites and historical material: permits and conditions for excavation; criminal penalty

Summary:

(1)(a) Requires a person to obtain a permit issued by the State Parks and Recreation Department before excavating or altering an archeological site on public lands, making an exploratory excavation on public lands to determine the presence of an archeological site or remove from public lands any material of an archeological, historic, prehistoric or anthropological nature. (b) Requires that a person who obtains a permit under this section and intends to curate or arrange for alternate curation of an archeological object that is uncovered during an archeological investigation must submit evidence to the state historic preservation officer that the Oregon State Museum of Anthropology and the appropriate Indian tribe have approved the applicant's curatorial facilities. (c) Declares that a permit shall not be effective without the approval of the state agency or local governing body charged with management of the public land on which the excavation is to be made, and without the approval of the appropriate Indian tribe. (d) Directs the State Parks and Recreation director to adopt rules governing the issuance of permits, with the advice of Oregon Indian tribes and the executive officer of the Commission on Indian Services. (e) Directs that disputes under paragraphs (b) and (c) shall be resolved in accordance with 390.240. (f) Requires the State Parks and Recreation director, before issuing a permit, to consult with the landowning or land managing agency and, if the archeological site in question is associated with a prehistoric or historic native Indian culture, the Commission on Indian Services and the most appropriate Indian tribe. (2) Authorizes the State Parks and Recreation Department to issue such a permit to: (a) a person conducting an excavation, examination or gathering of such material for the benefit of a recognized scientific or educational institution with a view to promoting the knowledge of archeology or anthropology; (b) a qualified archeologist to salvage such material from unavoidable destruction; or (c) a qualified archeologist sponsored by a recognized institution of higher learning, a qualified private firm or an Indian tribe. (3) Requires that any archeological materials recovered by a person granted a permit under this section shall be placed under the stewardship of the state for curation by the Oregon State Museum of Anthropology, with the exception of Indian human remains, funerary objects, sacred objects and objects of cultural patrimony. Authorizes the State Museum of Anthropology, with the approval of the appropriate Indian tribe, to approve an alternate curatorial facility. (4) Authorizes the State Museum of Anthropology to transfer permanent possessory rights in subject material to an appropriate Indian tribe. (5) Exempts from the requirements of a permit under this section any forestry operations on private lands for which notice has been filed with the state forester, except for those operations affecting sites containing human remains, funerary objects and objects of cultural patrimony as defined in 358.905, or objects associated with a prehistoric Indian tribal culture. (6) Defines "private firm" and "qualified archeologist." (7) Declares that violation of the provisions of subsection (1)(a) of this section is a Class B misdemeanor.

Primary Topic: Archeological Activities

    Secondary Topic:
    • Permit / Site Investigation Authority
    • Violation / Penalty / Enforcement

Code Book: Oregon Revised Statutes
Citation: 390.237
Section Title: Archeological sites and historical material: removal without permit; exceptions

Summary:

Declares that all materials and collections of archeological, historic, prehistoric or anthropological nature removed from public lands by any individual or institution without obtaining the permit required in 390.235 are under the stewardship of the state of Oregon and shall be assigned to the Oregon State Museum of Anthropology with the expressed approval of the appropriate Indian tribe. Exempts from the requirements of this subsection any native Indian human remains, funerary goods, sacred objects and objects of cultural patrimony, which shall go directly to the appropriate Indian tribe.

Primary Topic: Archeological Activities

    Secondary Topic:
    • Curation / Ownership of Artifacts
    • Disposition of Human Remains
    • Permit / Site Investigation Authority

Code Book: Oregon Revised Statutes
Citation: 390.240
Section Title: Archeological sites and historical material: mediation and arbitration of disputes; rules; panel membership

Summary:

(1) Requires that the following disputes shall be submitted to mediation and, if mediation is not successful, to arbitration: (a) a dispute regarding the issuance of an archeological permit under 390.235; or (b) a dispute over the disposition of human skeletal remains or burial goods under 97.750. (2) Directs the State Parks and Recreation Commission, in consultation with the governing bodies of the Dispute Resolution Commission and the governing bodies of the Oregon Indian tribes, to adopt rules establishing mediation and arbitration procedures, including appeal procedures. (3) Requires the arbitration panel under such a program to consist of representatives of: the State Historic Preservation Office; the Commission on Indian Services; the Oregon State Museum of Anthropology; a governing body of a federally recognized Oregon Indian tribe; and the public, selected by the Dispute Resolution Commission.

Primary Topic: Archeological Activities

    Secondary Topic:
    • Curation / Ownership of Artifacts
    • Disposition of Human Remains



Return to State laws
State Historic Preservation Legislation Database. Search by state and keywords for legislation.
Oregon government, preservation and state archaeological resource links.



home : mission : updates : sites : learn : action : links : contact


Best viewed at screen resolutions 1024 x 768 and 800 x 600
Copyright Information
For site problems contact the webmaster