New York museum returns ancestral remains

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Members of the Tseycum First Nation visited the American Museum of Natural History in New York City this week to reclaim the remains of ancestors taken from their land about a century ago.

The group planned to take the remains late Wednesday back to Vancouver Island in Canada's British Columbia. An interment is planned for Friday, Chief Vern Jacks said.

"Our people don't belong in boxes in a museum," he said. "This is our life, we still respect our dead."

The tribe said it was pleased with the New York museum's reaction to its request.

Charles McLean, senior vice president for communications and marketing at the museum, said a process was already in place to address repatriation issues. He said there had been at least one other occasion where the museum had returned remains.

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Randll Reese Besch - 6/18/2008

Nice to see it being done.