Federally Recognized Indian Tribes
The U.S. government officially recognizes more than 500 Indian tribes in the contiguous 48 states and Alaska. These federally recognized tribes are eligible for funding and services from the Bureau of Indian Affairs, either directly or through contracts, grants, or compacts.
The Bureau of Indian Affairs lists the federally recognized tribes and contact information for each tribe's Tribal Leader.
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Cultural Resources for Native Americans
The National Tribal Preservation Program is designed to help Indian tribes preserve and protect resources and traditions important to them. The program funds Tribal Heritage grants for federally recognized Indian tribes, to help them with cultural and historic preservation projects.
The program also funds Tribal Historic Preservation Officers, who:
- inventory tribal historic properties
- prepare and carry out a tribal-wide historic preservation plan
- assist federal agencies with reviewing undertakings on tribal lands
When a federal agency reviews a project on tribal land, it must consult the Tribal Historic Preservation Officer (for federally recognized tribes)—or a designated representative (for non-federally recognized tribes). Federal agencies also must consult with Indian tribes that attach religious and cultural significance to historic properties, regardless of their location.
The Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act:
- requires federal agencies and museums to inventory and identify Native American human remains and cultural items in their collections
- requires federal agencies and museums to consult with federally recognized Indian tribes on the return of those objects to descendants, tribes, or organizations
- authorizes grants to assist Indian tribes, Alaska native villages, and museums to document and return human remains and cultural objects to their native people
As part of its archeology program, the National Park Service collaborates with tribes, interprets the past to visitors, and protects archeological sites.
The federal Advisory Council on Historic Preservation assists tribes with critical historic preservation issues, as does the nonprofit National Association of Tribal Historic Preservation Officers.
Other Cultural Resources
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