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Ten Tribes Sign Preservation Agreements with National Park Service

WASHINGTON – With the addition in April of the Tule River Indian Tribe in California, the National Park Service (NPS) has signed ten new Tribal Historic Preservation agreements with Tribes in five states over the last year.

With the new agreements, the Tribes have assumed certain historic preservation functions from the states they’re located in.

“I’m deeply honored to assist these Tribes in more fully participating as sovereign governments in their historic preservation,” National Park Service Director Chuck Sams said. “Crafting historic preservation plans is important and complex work. I welcome these ten new Tribal Historic Preservation Offices into the federal preservation community.”

NPS welcomes the following new Tribal Historic Preservation Offices:

• Modoc Nation (Miami, OK)

• Kiowa Tribe of Oklahoma (Carnegie, OK)

• Lovelock Paiute Tribe of the Lovelock Indian Colony, Nevada (Lovelock, NV)

• Prairie Band Pottawatomi Nation (Mayetta, KS)

• Sac & Fox Tribe of the Mississippi in Iowa (Meskwaki Nation) (Tama, IA)

• Paskenta Band of Nomlaki Indians of California (Corning, CA)

• United Keetoowah Band of Cherokee Indians (Tahlequah, OK)

• Summit Lake Paiute of Nevada (Sparks, NV)

• Delaware Nation, Oklahoma (Anadarko, OK)

• Tule River Indian Tribe (Porterville, CA)

NPS has the responsibility under the National Historic Preservation Act to administer the Tribal Historic Preservation Program. The program assists Indian tribes in strengthening their historic preservation programs managed through Tribal Historic Preservation Offices (THPO) on tribal lands. Once signed, THPO agreements transfer certain historic preservation responsibilities to Tribes that would otherwise be the responsibility of the state.

The NPS Tribal Historic Preservation Program works with each tribal applicant while they develop their program plan, which may take a year or more. The program also consults with the appropriate State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO) and other tribal and federal preservation partners during the process before acceptance of the final plan and development of the THPO agreement.

One of the historic preservation responsibilities that most Tribes assume in the THPO agreement is to provide public information, education, training, and technical assistance in historic preservation.

In 2022, the Yurok Tribe and Yurok Tribal Historic Preservation Office celebrated the opening of the first tribally-operated visitor center within the California State Park system. The buildings and exhibits were completed in 2021, but due to the pandemic, it was not safe for people to mingle until 2022. The visitor center is located within Humboldt Lagoon State Park, at the Yurok location of Chah-pekw O’ Ket’-toh (Stone Lagoon), which is an important place for Yurok history and cultural revitalization.

With 574 federally recognized Tribes, continued engagement with Tribes supports many potential new THPO programs. There are currently 222 Tribes with signed THPO agreements. For more information about the Tribal Historic Preservation Program, visit the program website:

About the National Park Service. More than 20,000 National Park Service employees care for America’s 429 national parks and work with communities across the nation to help preserve local history and create close-to-home recreational opportunities. Learn more at, and on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube.


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