What is NAGPRA?

The Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act is a piece of federal legislation that requires institutions receiving federal funds to report cultural items on a national registry. Lineal descendants and culturally affiliated tribal entities or organizations may then ask for the return of these items. Items deemed “cultural items” include human remains, funerary objects, sacred/religious objects, and objects of cultural patrimony. Objects of cultural patrimony are defined as those objects that have cultural or historical significance to the heritage of a group.

About NAGPRA at the GBL

Following the national Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act , Indiana University is involved in ongoing efforts to return Native American cultural items to lineal descendants and culturally affiliated Indian tribes, and to provide information about culturally unidentifiable Native American collections. The IU NAGPRA Program is available to answer questions. The IU NAGPRA director is Dr. Jayne-Leigh Thomas. She can be reached at (812) 856.5315 or thomajay@indiana.edu.

For more information on the national NAGPRA, please visit the National NAGPRA page.

For more information on NAGPRA-related activities at the Glenn Black Laboratory, please contact the director, Dr. April Sievert.