Prehistoric human remains found along Michigan Lake park
EMPIRE, Dec. 25, 2020 (AP): Officials are communicating with
Native American groups to help decide what to do next with
prehistoric human remains found along a Michigan Lake shoreline
in a northwestern Michigan park.
A visitor found the remains in Sleeping Bear Dunes National
Lakeshore three years ago, took them out of the park and
then returned them a year later, Scott Tucker, the park's
superintendent, told MLive.com.
Examinations at a medical examiner's office and further analysis
of the bones at Western Michigan University helped
identify them as prehistoric remains most likely tied to
prehistoric Native American populations.
``Our goal is to respect the ancestral remains that were found,
and let the tribes determine the next steps,'' Tucker said.
The Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act
requires a role for Native Americans regarding remains
discovered on federal or tribal lands. Park officials have been
holding consultations with five regional tribal communities
about the lakeshore remains.
Erosion caused by higher water levels in Lake Michigan in recent
years likely led to them to become exposed, according to Tucker.
The finding became public recently after park officials placed
public notices about the remains in several regional newspapers.