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Friday, October 8, 2010

St. Francis/Sokoki Band of Vermont Abenakis: Proposed Finding--Summary Under the Criteria--That This Group Does Not Exist As A Indian or Abenaki Tribe: Pages 1 to 09:

As follows, page by page, I will place this very informative document for the public to actually be able to "read for themselves"..."evaluate"...and "review" This group of alleged and re-invented Abenakis of Vermont is presently seeking State Recognition from the Legislature of Vermont. This particular groups is one of the 4 incorporated groups of alleged and re-invented Groups who now claim to be the "Abenakis of Vermont," who have "representatives" presently sitting on and representing the Vermont Commission On Native American Affairs, here in Vermont. None of these groups willingly, without hesitation or protest will show and provide any genealogical validity to their connections to the Abenaki People, historically or contemporarily-speaking. So here goes....at 8 to 10 pages at a posting I am going to provide this Proposed Finding Report regarding this incorporated group calling itself the "St. Francis/ Sokoki Band of Abenakis of Vermont.
(Let me 'give credit' where credit is due)...I received this particular documentation from Rhonda Lou (nee: Besaw) Grimes - True (wife of Charles Francis True, Jr. of Whitefield, Coos County, New Hampshire) of the so-called "Abenaki Nation of New Hampshire, Inc." (or D.B.A.)
Cover Page
Summary under the Criteria
for the Proposed Finding on the
St. Francis/ Sokoki Band of the Abenakis of Vermont
Prepared in response to a petition submitted to the Associate Deputy Secretary for Federal acknowledgment that this group does not exist as an Indian Tribe.
Approved: November 09, 2005
Signed: James E. Cason
Associate Deputy Secretary of the Interior
St. Francis/ Sokoki Band of Vermont Abenakis:
Proposed Finding - Summary Under the Criteria
Page 01
ST. FRANCIS/ SOKOKI BAND OF ABENAKIS OF VERMONT
TABLE OF CONTENTS
INTRODUCTION Page 3
Administrative History Page 4
Overview of the Petitioner and its Claimed Connection to the Historical Tribe Page 10
CONCLUSIONS UNDER THE CRITERIA (25 CFR 83.7)
Executive Summary of the Proposed Finding's Conclusions Page 20
Criterion (a) Page 22
Criterion (b) Page 44
Criterion (c) Page 91
Criterion (d) Page 109
Criterion (e) Page 113
Criterion (f) Page 147
Criterion (g) Page 149
SUPPORTING MATERIALS
Map: The Western Abenaki and Their Neighbors Page 7
Map: Map of St. Francis/Odanak and Vicinity in the Province of Quebec Page 8
Map: Map of Colonial Northeast, circa 1660-1725 Page 9
Appendix A: Information Chart on Petitioner's Claimed Ancestor Families Page AI
Appendix B: Transcription of James Robertson's Lease 1765 Page BI
St. Francis/ Sokoki Band of Vermont Abenakis:
Proposed Finding-- Summary Under the Criteria
Page 02
ACRONYMS AND ABBREVIATIONS
ADS Associate Deputy Secretary
AS-IA Assistant Secretary - Indian Affairs
BAR Branch of Acknowledgment and Research, Bureau of Indian Affairs
BIA Bureau of Indian Affairs
CFR Code of Federal Regulations
FD Final Determination
FAIR Federal Acknowledgment Information Resource
FR Federal Register
FTM TM Family Tree Maker
IBIA Interior Board of Indian Appeals
SSA St. Francis/Sokoki Band of Abenakis of Vermont
OD Obvious deficiencies letter
OFA Office of Federal Acknowledgment
PF Proposed Finding
TA Technical assistance letter
U. S. United States
VES Vermont Eugenics Survey


St. Francis/ Sokoki Band of Vermont Abenakis:
Proposed Finding - Summary Under the Criteria
Page 03
Summard under the Criteria for the Proposed Finding
on the
ST. FRANCIS/ SOKOKI BAND OF ABENAKIS OF VERMONT
INTRODUCTION
St. Francis/ Sokoki Band of Vermont Abenakis:
Proposed Finding— Summary Under the Criteria
Page 04
At the end of the period for comment on a proposed finding, the Associate Deputy Secretary shall consult with the petitioner and interested parties to determine an equitable time frame for consideration of written arguments and evidence submitted during the response period. The petitioner and interested parties shall be notified of the date such consideration begins.

After consideration of the written arguments and evidence rebutting or supporting the proposed finding and the petitioner's response to the comments of interested parties and informed parties, the Assistant Secretary shall make a final determination regarding the petitioner's status. A summary of this determination shall be published in the Federal Register within 60 days from the date on which the consideration of the written arguments and evidence rebutting or supporting the proposed finding begins.

After publication of the final determination, the petitioner or any interested party may file a request for reconsideration with the Interior Board of Indian Appeals (IBIA) under the procedures in section 83.11 of the regulations. A request for reconsideration must be made within 90 days of publication of the final determination. Unless a request for reconsideration is filed pursuant to section 83.11, the final determination will become effective 90 days from its date of publication.

Administrative History

The SSA submitted a letter of intent on March 28, 1980, to petition for Federal acknowledgment as an Indian tribe. On October 22, 1982, the SSA (St. Francis / Sokoki Abenaki) submitted a documented petition to the Department. The documents consisted mostly of a narrative, some family charts, abstracted lists of birth records from the 1920's, and a few primary documents mostly from before the 19th century or after the early 1970's. The petitioner did not provide copies of most of the primary and secondary sources referenced or quoted in the petition narrative, as required by the regulations (83.6(c)). Copies of these supporting documents should be submitted in response to all the criteria.

The Department conducted a formal technical assistance (TA) review of the petition, and on June 14, 1983, sent the first obvious deficiency (OD) letter to the petitioner. The petitioner responded to the first OD letter on May 23, 1986, with more documentation. These documents consisted mainly of a petition narrative, 26 appendices containing mostly lists of names abstracted from local records and Federal censuses, and family charts. The petitioner submitted copies of a small number of primary documents from before the early 1970's, with most of them being from the period before 1800. It did not supply copies of most of the primary and secondary sources referenced or quoted in the petition narrative. Included among the materials referenced but not submitted were numerous field notes and numbered but unidentified sources contained in the petitioner's archives. These numbered documents could, according to the group, "be consulted with the permission of the Abenaki Research Project Staff' (SSA 1986.05.23 [Addendum B], 356).1 Also not included was "Addendum C," described as containing family histories, an oral history overview, and a pre-1800 historical work summary, which the petitioner promised to
FOOTNOTES:
1. Citations are the same as those used to identify the document in the FAIR database under the Short Cite Heading. For a discussion of the FAIR system see the final paragraph of the Administrative History.
St. Francis/ Sokoki Band of Vermont Abenakis:
Proposed Finding— Summary Under the Criteria
Page 05
submit at a later date (SSA 1986.05.23 [Addendum B], 356). This "Addendum C" was never submitted, although the Department informed the petitioner of its absence on December 1, 1988, and requested that it be provided (Thompson 1988.12.01; Salerno 2001.10.23). The petition narrative also made frequent references to an unpublished 1979 work by John Moody, one of its researchers, entitled "Missisquoi Abenaki: Survival in Their Ancient Homeland." This manuscript, part of the petition record, made frequent references to primary and secondary sources, including a number of interviews, copies of which the petitioner did not submit. The petitioner is encouraged to submit these materials to support its claims.

On September 22, 1988, the Office of the Attorney General of the State of Vermont (State) wrote the Department's Office of the Solicitor (SOL) requesting that it be provided copies of SSA membership lists in the petition record. The Attorney General's office stated these lists were needed as part of criminal prosecutions related to some petitioning group members (Eschen 1988.09.22). On October 19, 1988, the Department informed the State that these membership lists were protected by the provisions of the Privacy Act, but granted the State's request and provided the lists under a specific exception to the prohibition of disclosure, Section 56(c)(5) of Part 2 of Title 43 of the Code of Federal Regulations (Elbert 1988.10.19). This exception allowed disclosure of such materials

to another agency or to an instrumentality of any governmental jurisdiction within or under the control of the United States for a civil or criminal law enforcement activity if the activity is authorized by law, and if the head of the agency or instrumentality has made a written request to the Department specifying the particular portion desired and the law enforcement activity for which the record is sought.

On January 11, 1989, the petitioner requested the return of its documented petition materials (St. Francis 1989.01.11). The Department informed the petitioner on February 23, 1989, that it was returning the materials under separate cover. Returned materials included a neighborhood map and pages 222-227 from the narrative portion of the petition, Addendum Part A, Appendices Part 13, all membership rolls, all genealogical data, and specific material from the part of the petition submitted as Part A (Johnson 1989.02.23). The Department also notified the petitioner the material had to be resubmitted when the group's petition was placed on active consideration (Johnson 1989.02.23).

In December 1995 and January 1996, the group submitted a "Second Addendum" to its petition for Federal acknowledgment, which was essentially the same material provided in 1982 and 1986, without the neighborhood map, early membership rolls, and other materials returned by the Department in 1989. On January 17, 1996, the Department placed the group on the "Ready, Waiting for Active Consideration" list. After assigning a research team to evaluate and prepare recommendations on the SSA petition, the Department began active consideration of the proposed finding on February 4, 2005. The Associate Deputy Secretary projected issuing the proposed finding by October 28, 2005.
St. Francis/ Sokoki Band of Vermont Abenakis:
Proposed Finding— Summary Under the Criteria
Page 06 
On April 13, 2005, the petitioner submitted a supplemental submission to its petition for Federal acknowledgment as permitted by the Department's Federal Register notice, entitled "Office of Federal Acknowledgment; Reports and Guidance Documents; Availability, etc." dated March 31, 2005. These materials consisted mainly of a genealogical database, Family Tree MakerTM (FTMTM) file on diskette, the group's current membership list on diskette (separately certified by only five of the seven members of the governing body), letters from academics responding to the State's comments on the petition, resumes of several researchers and academics, a catalog of purported Native American artifacts from Vermont, four interview transcripts, documents related to the Vermont Eugenics Survey, copies of previously submitted articles from local histories, meeting minutes, newsletters, a videotape, and some correspondence. The FTMTM file and the group's membership list were submitted in a software format that could not be accessed by the computers of the Department researchers. This material was supplemented by additional documents on May 16, 2005, including another FTMTM file in compact disk format which could be accessed by OFA's computers, a paper copy of the group's membership list not separately certified by the governing body, a copy of a newspaper article, and the group's current constitution. On August 5, 2005, OFA researchers requested clarification of some of the terms used in the petition, and also requested copies of a number of membership files. On August 18, 2005, the petitioner submitted another membership list separately certified by all the members of the governing body, as well as the clarification of terms and copies of membership files requested by OFA.

To create this proposed finding, the Department used a database system incorporating all data from the administrative record employed in the decision-making process. The database system is named FAIR, for "Federal Acknowledgment Information Resource system." It runs on Access 2000 software, a relational database capable of being operated on personal computers. The system provides on-screen access to the images of all of the documents in the record, which are linked to entries of information extracted from the documents. The system information includes the genealogical relationships between individuals, as well as the group's membership lists and reports. The genealogical information may be exported to a separate genealogical software program, FTMTM, for preparation of genealogical charts. The complete documentary record considered for this proposed finding will be included and provided to the petitioner; a redacted version will be prepared for interested parties to protect privacy information. Any documentation not scanned in time for inclusion in FAIR for the proposed finding will be included in the database prepared for the final determination.
St. Francis/ Sokoki Band of Vermont Abenakis:
Proposed Finding -Summary Under the Criteria
Page 07
The Western Abenakis and Their Neighbors. (Map adapted from Colin Calloway, The Western Abenaki of Vermont, 1600-1800)
St. Francis/ Sokoki Band of Vermont Abenakis:

Proposed Finding - Summary Under the Criteria
Page 08
Map of St. Francis/ Odanak and Vicinity in the Province of Quebec. (Map adapted from Gordon Day, The Identity of the St. Francis Indians)
St. Francis/ Sokoki Band of Vermont Abenakis:
Proposed Finding - Summary Under the Criteria
Page 09
Colonial Northeast, circa 1660-1725 (Map adapted from Sweeny and Haefeli, Captor and Captives: the 1704 French and Indian Raid on Deerfield, 2003: http://1704deerfield.history.museum/maps/northeast/html)

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