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Saturday, March 26, 2011

St. Francis/Sokoki Missisquoi Abenaki Application For Vermont State Recognition PAGES 40 through 52, Etc:

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Vermont's Burial Law:

Vermont's burial laws were written to regulate historic-modern cemeteries that are fenced in with headstones marking each grave. This law does not adequately deal with the exposure of unmarked burials which more often than not tend to be Abenaki in origin. To address the inadequacy of this law the Missisquoi Chief April St. Francis Merrill, in collaboration with concerned Vermont legislators, spearheaded an effort to improve the burial law to better protect Abenaki graves. This improved burial law H.281, presented below, is designed to provide for appropriate treatment of Native American remains by the Missisquoi repatriation coordinator whenever an ancestor's grave has been unearthed from their original place of interment, and more importantly would provide for the respectful reinterment of those remains in a protected location as soon as feasible.

No. 151. An act relating to the removal of bodily remains.

(H.281) It is hereby enacted by the General Assembly of the State of Vermont:

Sec. 1. 18 V.S.A. § 5212b is amended to read: § 5212b. UNMARKED BURIAL SITES SPECIAL FUND: REPORTING OF

(a) The unmarked burial sites special fund is established in the state treasury for the purpose of protecting, preserving, moving or reinterring human remains discovered in unmarked burial sites.

(b) The fund shall be comprised of any monies appropriated to the fund by the general assembly or received from any other source, private or public. Interest earned on the fund, and any balance remaining in the fund at the end of a fiscal year, shall be retained in the fund. This fund shall be maintained by the state treasurer, and shall be managed in accordance with subchapter 5 of chapter 7 of Title 32.

(c) The commissioner of economic, housing and community affairs development may authorize disbursements from the fund for use in any municipality in which human remains are discovered in unmarked burial sites in accordance with a process approved by the commissioner. The commissioner shall may approve any process developed through consensus or agreement of the interested parties, including the municipality, the governor's advisory commission on Native American affairs a Native American group
historically based in Vermont with a connection to the remains, and private property owners of private property on which there are known or likely to be unmarked burial sites, and any other appropriate interested parties, provided the commissioner determines that the process is likely to be effective, and includes all the following:
(1) Methods for determining the presence of unmarked burial sites, including archaeological surveys and assessments and other nonintrusive techniques.
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(2) Methods for handling development and excavation on property on which it is known that there is or is likely to be one or more unmarked burial sites.

(3) Options for owners of property on which human remains in unmarked burial sites are discovered or determined to be located.
(4) Procedures for protecting, preserving or moving unmarked burial sites and human remains, subject, where applicable, to the permit requirement and penalties of this chapter.

(5) Procedures for resolving disputes.

(d) If unmarked burial sites and human remains are removed, consistent with the process set forth in this section and any permit required by this chapter, there shall be no criminal liability under 13 V.S.A. § 3761.
(e) The funds shall be used for the following purposes relating to unmarked burial sites:

(1) To monitor excavations.

(2) To protect, preserve, move, or reintern unmarked burial sites and human remains.

(3) To perform archaeological assessments and archaeological site or field investigations, including radar scanning and any other nonintrusive technology or technique designed to determine the presence of human remains.

(4) To provide mediation and other appropriate dispute resolution services.

(5) To acquire property or development rights, provided the commissioner of economic, housing and community affairs development determines that disbursements for this purpose will not unduly burden the fund, and further provided the commissioner shall expend funds for this purpose only with the concurrence of the secretary of commerce and community development and after consultation with the legislative bodies of any affected municipality or municipalities.

(6) Any other appropriate purpose determined by the commissioner to be consistent with the purposes of this fund.
(f) The commissioner may adopt rules to carry out the intent and purpose of this section.
When an unmarked burial site is first discovered, the discovery shall be reported immediately to a law enforcement agency. If, after completion of an investigation pursuant to section 5205 of this title, a law enforcement agency determines that the burial site does not constitute evidence of a crime, the law enforcement agency shall immediately notify the state archeologist who may authorize appropriate action regarding the unmarked burial site. Sec. 2. UNMARKED BURIAL SITE TREATMENT PLAN COMMITTEE
(a) The unmarked burial site treatment plan committee is created to develop procedures for addressing issues relating to known or discovered unmarked burial sites of human remains, including developing treatment plans to be used when an unmarked burial site is discovered on private property. The committee shall be composed of the following nine members:
(1) The commissioner of economic housing and community / development or the commissioner's designee.
(2) The state archeologist or designee.

(3) A representative from the Vermont League of Cities and Towns.
(4) A representative from a Native American group based in Vermont who has experience in handling unmarked burial sites appointed by the commissioner of economic, housing and
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community development.

(5) A federal archeologist from the Natural Resources Conservation Service of the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

(6) The U.S. Forest Service, Green Mountain National Forest archeologist.
(7) The director of the University of Vermont consulting archeology program.

(8) A representative from the Vermont Bankers Association Inc.

(9) A representative from the Home Builders and Remodelers Association of Vermont.

(b) The committee shall:

(1) Develop procedures for responding to reports of a discovery of an unmarked burial site. For the purposes of this section "an unmarked burial site" means the location of any interment of human remains, evidence of human remains, including the presence of red ochre, associated funerary objects, or a documented concentration of burial sites, but does not include a cemetery. mausoleum, or columbarium or any other site that is clearly marked as a site containing human remains.

(2) Develop various treatment plans for addressing issues that attend the discovery of an unmarked burial site on private property. A treatment plan is an outline of the process for providing appropriate and respectful treatment of the burial site while considering the rights of the landowner. Each treatment plan shall include the following as appropriate:

(A) Methods for determining the presence of an unmarked burial including  archeological site, including and assessments and other nonintrusive techniques.

(B) Methods for handling development and excavation on property on which there is a known burial site or there is likely to be one.

(C) Options for owners of property on which human remains are discovered or known to be located.
(D) Procedures for protecting, preserving. or moving the burial site and the human remains.
(E) Time frames for implementation of the treatment plan.

(F) Procedures for resolving disputes among stakeholders.
(3) The committee shall issue a written report outlining the procedures and treatment plans to the house committee on general, housing and military affairs and the senate committee on economic development, housing and general affairs on or before January 15, 2011. Sec. 3. 18 V.S.A. § 5212 is amended to read: § 5212. PERMIT TO REMOVE DEAD BODIES
(a) A person desirous of disinterring or removing the body of a human being from one cemetery to another cemetery or to another part of the same cemetery or from a tomb or receiving vault elsewhere shall apply to the town clerk of the town where such municipality in which the dead body is interred or entombed for a removal permit.
(b) An applicant for a removal permit shall publish notice of his or her intent to remove the remains. This notice shall be published for two successive weeks in a newspaper of general circulation in the town municipality in which the body is interred or entombed. The notice shall include a statement that the spouse, child, parent or, sibling, or descendant of the deceased, or that the cemetery commissioner or other municipal authority responsible for cemeteries in the municipality may object to the proposed removal by filing a complaint in the probate court of the district in which the body is
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located as provided in section 52.12a of this title.

(c) The town municipal clerk shall issue a removal permit 45 days after the date on which notice was last published pursuant to subsection (b) of this section or, if an object is made pursuant to section 5212a, upon order of the Court.
(d) Notwithstanding the provisions of subsections (b) and (c) of this section, a removal permit shall be issued upon application:

(1) when removal is necessary because of temporary entombment; or

(2) to a federal, state, county, or municipal official acting pursuant to official duties; or
(3) if the applicant has written permission to remove the remains from all persons entitled to object under section 5212a of this title.

(e) This section does not apply to:

(1) Unmarked burial sites that are subject to the provisions of subchapter I of this chapter.
(2) The removal of "historic remains," which has the same meaning as in subdivision 5217(a)(1) of this title. Sec. 4. 18 V.S.A. § 5217 is added to read: § 5217. REMOVAL OF MARKED HISTORIC REMAINS

(a) As used in this section:

(1) "Historic remains" means remains of a human being who has been deceased for 100 years or more, and the remains are marked and located in a publicly known or marked burial ground or cemetery.

(2) "Public, good" means actions that will benefit the municipality and the property where the remains are located.

(3) "Remains" means cremated human remains that are in a container or the bodily remains of a human being.

(4) "Removal" means to transport human remains from one location to another premises.

(b) A person may apply for a removal permit to disinter or remove historic remains by filing an filing application with the clerk for the municipality in Which the historic remains are located. The application shall include all the following:

(1) Identification of the specific location and marking of the remains.

(2) Identification of the specific location in which the remains will be reburied.

(3) The reasons for removal of the remains, including, a statement of the public good that will result from the removal.

(c) An applicant for a removal permit shall send notice by first-class mail to all the following:

(1) The cemetery commissioner or other municipal authority responsible for cemeteries in the municipality in which the historic remains are located.

(2) All historical societies located within the municipality in which the historic remains are located.
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(3) Any descendant known to the applicant. The applicant shall contact the Vermont Historical Society, the Vermont Old Cemetery Association, the Vermont Cemetery Association, and any veterans' organization operating within the county in which the historic remains are located in order to ascertain the whereabouts of any known descendants.

(4) The state archeologist.

(d) A cemetery commisioner or municipal authority responsible for cemeteries, a historical society, a descendant or the state archeologist may file an objection to the proposed removal of historic remains with the probate court in the district in which the historic remains are located and with the clerks of the municipality in which the historic remains are located within 30 days after the date the notice was mailed.

(e) If no objection is received within 30 days after the date the notice was last published as required by subsection (c) of this section, the municipal clerk shall issue a removal permit.

(f) If the probate court receives an objection within the 30-day period, the court shall notify the clerk for the municipality in which the historic remains are located and schedule a hearing on whether to allow removal as described in the application.

(g) The probate court. after hearing, shall order the municipal clerk to grant or deny a permit for removal of the historic remains. The court shall consider the impact of the removal on the public good.

(h) The permit shall require that all remains, markers, and relevant funeral-related materials associated with the burial site be removed, and the permit may require that the removal be conducted or supervised by a qualified professional archeologist in compliance with standard archeological process. All costs associated with the removal shall be paid by the applicant.

§ 853 (c) (6) The applicant is g oranized in part: (A) To preserve, document, organize promote its Native American Indian culture and history, and this purpose is reflected in its bylaws.

The Missisquoi Constitution is provided above in § 853 (c) (4) that establishes how the tribe is governed.

In May of 1983 the Tribal Council created a non-profit called Wobanaki Inc. Wobanaki Inc. was set up to 1.) improve the educational, health, social and economic status of Native Americans living in or having their historical heritage or some other significant part thereof in the State of Vermont; 2.) to maintain and disseminate information regarding traditional Native American culture and social values, including language, arts and crafts and other aspects of Native American life; 3.) to preserve, conserve and protect natural areas which are of important ecological or historical significance and to interface with other organizations which share those purposes; 4.) to receive gifts of money, securities and real property and to otherwise acquire and hold, lease, rent, sell and mortgage real and personal property for the purpose and objectives of the corporation. Several activities were and are conducted through this corporation that includes the purchase of Brunswick Springs, a scared healing and burial ground in Brunswick, Vermont
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and burial grounds on Monument Road in Highgate, Vermont. Our annual Abenaki Heritage Celebration is held to educate Vermonter's and others about our rich culture and heritage. There are also language camps and lessons, where youth groups and our children learn dancing, singing, arts and crafts, the traditional ways of our people and how to respect mother earth. Wobanaki Inc. has done many more cultural initiatives over the years that are too cumbersome to list here.

§ 853 (c) (6) (B) To address the social, economic, political or cultural needs of the members with ongoing educational programs and activities.

In 1976, the Abenaki Tribal Council established the Abenaki Self-Help Association Incorporated (ASHAI), whose aim was to improve the socio-economic and educational conditions of community members. The ASHAI (a 501(c)3 non-profit organization) became the "social service" arm of the community, while the Tribal Council pursued a political agenda which could lead to formal State and Federal Recognition with appropriate rights, privileges, and dignities.

The Abenaki Self-Help Association, Inc. was predicated on a profound respect for children and elders. The philosophical underpinnings of this organization were based on values of sharing, respect, dignity, and honesty. Operating on a lean budget (approximately $35,000.00) obtained through a Federal Community Service (CSA) grant, the ASHAI quickly networked with Champlain Valley Work and Training Programs located in St. Albans. This statewide agency was the recipient of federal Comprehensive Employment and Training Administration (CETA) dollars. Since many Abenaki community members met necessary income guidelines, training slots were developed in areas of work experience and on-the-job training. Initial ASHAI efforts focused on youth enrichment activities, food and nutrition, outreach, and job development. The work force consisted of community members recently graduating from high school, drop-outs, and some individuals with limited work experience. They all shared a vision of community empowerment through the willingness to take risks and put in long hours.
By the late 1970's, it became apparent that a formal community needs assessment would contribute to planning efforts. The resulting profile was staggering. 31.7% of Missisquoi households were classified as low income, according to Health and Human Services (HHS) guidelines. Another 37.3% were classified income. Still another 10.8% could grouped accurately due to lack of specificity about actual income. This group occupied a range between low and very low.

Income in Missisquoi households came from a variety of sources. Working families whose income came solely from employment comprised about 31 % of the population. Sixty-nine percent received at least some sort of public support. Nearly 40% of the Missisquoi families had no income from employment. Educational figures revealed that only 34% of the heads of 1ouseholds had either a high school or General Equivalency Diploma (GED). Nearly 16% left school between the ninth and twelfth grades, while 50% left school before completing the ninth grade. Health and housing conditions were disproportionately alarming. In 1980, many Missisquoi families lived in homes with no indoor plumbing. Short-term goals were apparent. The development of suitable housing was critical as were issues of education and income development.

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In the early 1980's the Abenaki Self-Help Association became the state's first private non-profit group organization to develop a "Section Eight" low income housing project. In collaboration with the Vermont State Housing Authority and Federal Housing and Urban Development (HUD) initiatives, "Abenaki Acres" was created. Utilizing local contractors who hired Abenaki construction crews, the community developed a twelve-unit housing project in Swanton. Tapping into other rehabilitation funds, the ASHAI created additional affordable housing as well.

With housing starts underway, the community concomitantly expanded job creation and development efforts. Having obtained federal Department of Labor (DOL) funds, the ASHAI added vocational training components to its community services. Through aggressive outreach efforts, the ASHAI established contacts with companies such as IBM. The ASHAI was lauded as one of the best DOL sites in New England.

In combined meetings between the ASHAI's Board of Directors and the Abenaki Tribal Council, a decision with lasting impact was reached. Tribal leadership decided to explore educational opportunities for its members. Given the dismal profile and experience of adults who had attended public schools, the ASHAI first embarked on Adult Basic Education (ABE) opportunities. Through the Federal Department of Education Indian Education Office, the ASHAI submitted a grant which would focus on the experiences of community members. Concentrating on basic literacy, GED preparation, and life-coping skills, the grant was funded and dozens of Abenakis began experiencing.. education in a positive way. Once students obtained their GED, they became volunteer tutors and mentors. This notion of giving something back to the community became a hallmark of ASHAI initiatives.

In 1981, tribal leadership turned its efforts toward reaching children in school before they dropped out. An application for this funding (Title IV, Part A of the Indian Education Act) required submission by a local educational agency (LEA). Abenaki leadership affirmed a commitment to effect change from within the system. The Tribal Council approached the Franklin Northwest Supervisory Union (FNWSU) with the idea of providing educational and cultural support services to children attending area public schools. The Superintendent of School Board was willing; a grant was submitted and approved by the Department of Education.

In the FNWSU, an active Missisquoi Parent Advisory Committee (PAC) was formed to oversee all educational programming. Parent participation and self-determination were deemed critical to program efficacy. Project goals included: 1) to increase student academic achievement; 2) to reduce the drop-out rate; 3) to increase parent involvement; 4) to promote curriculum initiatives; 5) to provide post-secondary opportunities; and 6) to instill a respect of cultural diversity for all area students.

An Indian Education Office was established on Grand Avenue in Swanton. Although the grant was to be administered by the Superintendent's Office, the PAC and other tribal leaders felt an office space was needed where parents would feel comfortable. The establishment of a separate Indian Education Office also sent an important message to the larger Swanton community. The Indian Education Office created visible evidence of the Missisquoi community's commitment to equal educational opportunity.

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By 1982, the ASHAI and the Indian Education Program were collaborating on dozens of initiatives. Federal Commissioner of Administration for Native Affairs (ANA) David Lester lauded the ASHAI as one of the 12 outstanding Native social service agencies in the country. Community gardens were planted whose harvest fed the elderly and a Friday evening Disney film series was a weekly event for all area children. Over 200 children filled space donated by the local Episcopal Church; volunteers provided free popcorn and soda; and area merchants donated resources as Swanton residents realized the Missisquoi community was coordinating events that would benefit everyone.

In 1984, the ASHAI initiated its own preschool and kindergarten. Swanton has no public kindergarten at the time, and few Missisquoi families could afford private pre-school or kindergarten settings. Several local officials questioned whether- low income residents would avail themselves of publicly provided early education opportunities. The ASHAI, with support of the Indian Education Program, submitted a pilot program to the Federal Department of Education. The program was a combination home and school-based model, with pre-school meeting three times a week and daily kindergarten sessions. A used van was donated and transportation was provided to the local Armory where classroom space was rented. Developmentally appropriate educational activities, a high level of parent involvement, and unique cultural awareness activities made the project a successful experience for Missisquoi families. In meeting with local officials at the end of the school year, Missisquoi community leaders could boast of a 97% daily attendance rate. The following year, Swanton began providing public kindergarten sessions for all children.

It should be noted that the ASHAI was experiencing tremendous growth during the Reagan administration, a time when many community action programs (CAPS) were being drastically out. The Abenaki strategy was to diversity funding resources, position itself for a federal push on economic development initiatives, and develop the capacity of building community members who would offer hundreds of volunteer hours.

As the Missisquoi community began to attract much media coverage, there were detractors who questioned Native veracity. To tribal leaders, this was extremely disturbing. Determined that Abenaki children, in particular, would have feelings of pride and self-worth, the community embarked on several cultural initiatives. Finding One's Way, the story of a local Abenaki boy, was introduced into the school systems. An accompanying teacher's manual soon followed. Now in its fourteenth printing, thousands of copies of this text have been disseminated throughout New England. The story of Louis, taunted by classmates about his "so-called" Indian heritage, is actually an amalgam of the experience of several Abenaki community members who agreed to partake in the development of this curriculum. Through meeting with his elders and learning about his heritage, Louis learns to be proud of who he is.

An Abenaki Youth Dance Troupe was started in the late 1980's. Young children began learning about the rich heritage through hands-on arts and crafts activities. As the same time, tribal leaders encouraged the nurturance of performing arts. With financial support from the Vermont Council on the Arts and the Indian Education Office, community organizers involved children,

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parents, and elders in costume design and creation, weekly practices, and performances of the Abenaki Youth Dance Troupe. They performed throughout Vermont at various cultural events,

Few Missisquoi Elders remained fluent in their Native language. Actually in truthfulness, there were NO "Missisquoi Elders" that remained fluent in the Abenaki language at all! Fearful that the language would be lost, the community invited a tribal elder Cecile Wawanolet from Odanak (Canada) to hold language classes in Swanton on a bi-weekly basis. Through the dedication, commitment, and perseverance of key community members, conversational Abenaki has now been taught at the local high school. At a meeting of the Governor's Advisory Commission on Native American Affairs in June, 1996, a high school Abenaki recipient Brent McEwen Reader of a prestigious award gave his acceptance speech entirely in his Native Abenaki tongue. For the dozens of community members attending, this was a special moment. Also, the publication of Alnodaodwa: A Western Abenaki Language Guide (Brink and Day, 1987), and accompanying audio cassette has allowed for interested Vermonters and others to learn more about the Abenaki language.

The bead working, basket making, and storytelling classes that have been held throughout the last 30 years speak to a community that continually strives to celebrate the possibilities offered by cultural diversity. Toward that aim, it was then the hope of Missisquoi leadership that both a cultural center and a museum be established. A modest museum, housing "material culture" artifacts has been realized next to Tribal headquarters (which also includes the ASHAI). In what had been an empty school building that was in great disrepair gave rise to the "Multigenerational Complex." Renovated in 2000, the building is home to the Missisquoi Health Center, a senior center for Elders, Title VII Indian Education Director's Office, and an Abenaki after-school program entitled the "Circle of Courage" where dozens of Abenaki and non-Abenaki students come together to learn about authentic Missisquoi culture in the areas of dance, instrumental music (drumming and flute), and the embroidery of regalia to be worn when the youngsters perform at venues such as the Flynn Theatre and the Echo Center. Concomitantly, there are sixteen affordable housing units for the elderly whereby activities are planned for the children and elders thus promoting a mutuality of respect.

This year has seen over fifty students from both Swanton and Highgate avail themselves of services. Furthermore, ten Missisquoi Valley Union High School (MVU) students volunteer at the cultural center so that they may "give back" to the younger children the lessons learned when they were participants in the program. The Circle of Courage after School Program has been lauded by the State of Vermont as an outstanding example of programming that celebrates cultural diversity for all local children so that socio-economic and racial differences can be seen as a strength in a democracy.

Contemporary Missisquoi community citizens rightfully take pride in our many accomplishments. Thirty years ago, the Abenaki drop-out rate at MVU was 70% with 50% leaving school before ninth grade. Today, the drop-out rate is 3%. In 1982, fewer than 5% of graduating Abenaki went on to any post-secondary education. Last year saw approximately 40% of Abenaki graduates go on to college.

Still, we have much more to accomplish and we continually evaluate the efficacy of our efforts so that we can strategically plan for the future. Despite years of oppression and hostile insults, the Abenaki Nation of Missisquoi (St. Francis/Sokoki Band) ensures that those in need may

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access the continuum of services in place for commumity members as well as to all Native peoples and Vermonters, wherever possible. Ours is a tradition of sharing wisdom and communal efforts. Working together, we will build a better life for our children.

§ 853 (c) (7) The applicant can document traditions, customs, oral stories, and a histories that signify the applicant's Native American heritage and connection in to their historical homeland.

The St. Francis/Sokoki Band, Abenaki Nation retains a significant fund of traditional knowledge and customs that can be tied to a native heritage through ethnography or folkloric studies. There are large numbers of traditions that have been previously published in Haviland and Power's The Original Vermonters and F. Wiseman's Voice of the Dawn, both University Press of New England, and Against the Darkness, a DVD from Title VII Indian Education (Swanton, VT). Below is a sample of newer data that has become available since 2006 to specifically address criterion § 853. (b) (3) "Documented traditions, customs, and legends that signify Native American heritage."

One of the most interesting regional traditions that has been uncovered recently is that on Missisquoi Bay (Highgate, VT), Abenaki ice fishermen warm their fish-eye bait under their tongues. This practice is considered "gross" by their Anglo and Franco-VT neighbors. Every ice fisherman has strong personal feelings, positive or negative of this practice—and these feelings are repeatedly correlated with other familial traces of Native ancestry/tradition.


Vera "Longtoe" Sheehan recounts a family story from [REDACTED] grandmother (d. 2003) of the use of "Indian clothes" at Missisquoi during this time period by "an old Indian woman," Ms. Sheehan's 3rd great grandmother  (d. 1932). [REDACTED] Ms. Sheehan said "I asked my grandmother how did she know she (the 3rd great grandmother) was Indian?" [REDACTED] Ms. Sheehan's grandmother described her as having "long braided hair and wearing Indian clothes... She wore old coins in her ears, many beads and a skirt with lots of ribbons. No white women would dress like that." Apparently these articles of clothing were locally made, because [REDACTED] Ms. Sheehan's grandmother went on to talk about "the beautiful ribbon and beads that the old women would sew, as they all sat around."


Dr. Wiseman Ph.D. LOVES to REPEAT himself and use his "scholarly" data, over and over again, throughout this SAME Application. See Page 23 of this same Application Review to observe that the Vera Longtoe Sheehan bit HAS ALREADY BEEN USED within this APLLICATION REVIEW previously in several different places.

In addition, Swanton's elders remember the local Indians with a measure of fondness. Ms. Polly Parre of Swanton, VT still has ash splint materials made for her by the Lapans in the 1950's, a family known to be Indian. In addition, Ms. Lucille Bell said in the January 7, 1996 Burlington Free Press, "I remember we had an Indian family here (Swanton, VT), and the woman made baskets and used to come around door to door to sell them. We didn't make a big thing of it and neither did they."

Probably the most important and definitive Indigenous customs involve land use. The great ethnologist, Frank Speck studied and published oil Indigenous Maine land tenure in his 1940 book Penobscot Man. In it, he described a family-based resource zone partitioning and use pattern that Haviland and Power, used in The Original Vermonters to describe prehistoric VT land use, but without any local confirmation. However, interviews with Missisquoi citizens and the authors'
 Frederick M. Wiseman own memories have confirmed the presence of this land tenure System in the Missisquol River Basin and Missisquoi Bay (Lake Champlain). Each core Missisquoi family
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band maintains its own distinguishing subsistence grounds along the Missisquoi River Valley; and has protocols for admitting others into these subsistence grounds. Author Fred Wiseman's family's traditional fishing territory was "the reef" a linear, north trending ledge and boulder ridge on the bottom of Missisquoi Bay. It was that family's responsibility to mark the north end of the reef for other fishermen with a red-painted wooden buoy or a plastic gallon milk-jug. This "buoying the reef" tradition was maintained every May until Wiseman's father's death. Dr. Wiseman's father asked permission of Mr. Hakey, to fish an "above the dam" section of the Missisquoi River, which was not Wiseman's family fishing territory, ritually giving Mr. Hakey a fishing lure, as a sign of respect. Family bands hunted and collected in partitioned floodplain and upland zones of the Missisquoi Valley. These subsistence zones were long-term, spatially consistent and bounded within themselves, yet cut across existing property and town lines, and even the more fluid hunting and fishing areas of Missisquoi's Franco VT and Anglo VT neighbors. These use areas often had seasonally occupied "cottages" or deer camps signing the of the area -- from the "Grandma Lampman" territory (marked with an historical plaque) at Maquam on the shores of Lake Champlain at least as far upriver as the St. Francis' well-known and attended Berkshire camp. In addition to hunting and fishing, local Native people collected herbs used in traditional medicinal curing from these well-delineated resource use areas. The River Rats (for discussion of their Indigenous ethnicity see Wiseman 2001, Voice of the Dawn: 120-132) collected local plants such skullcap (Scutellaria lateriflora) in restricted areas of the marshes of the Missisquoi River delta.

[REDACTED] Vera "Longtoe" Sheehan recounted a family story from [REDACTED] Sheehan's grandmother said "The older folks did the talking... in those days you were quiet, unless spoken to. The older folks would talk to me, but I couldn't understand them...Because they didn't speak English." What did they speak," [REDACTED] Ms. Sheehan asked her grandmother. "The old language," she answered.

Can Dr. Frederick Matthew Wiseman Ph.D. spell the word "redundancy"? His repetative and unnecessary "scholarly nonsense" merely shows and provides anyone the merits of Fred M. Wiseman, as to what sort of "scholar" he really is, as a "Abenaki" scholar.
Who exactly, is he trying to convince with his scholarly nonsense and distortions? It certainly doesn't convince me, as to the merit(s) or foundation(s) of his "scholarly" agrument(s).
I guess that is because I have actually read the B.I.A.'s O.F.A. Proposed Findings material, the Final Decision of the same; and the William H. Sorrell & Eve Jacobs-Carnahan's Response to the St. Francis/Sokoki Band of the Abenaki Nation NONSENSE already.

It is actually quite interesting that this "Abenaki" Scholar Fred M. Wiseman Ph.D. would present this sort of "stuff" (which is again, is really nothing at all) to the State of Vermont Legislative Committee's, and the politicians that are obviously being lazy, naive, and ignorant in these "Abenaki" matters, in their simply BE_LIE_VING these "scholarly conclusions". The very FACTUALLY REALITY that Frederick M. Wiseman Ph.D. could use the SAME crappy artifactual "alleged and re-invented Abenaki" materials that he used in the B.I.A. petition, again, in the current Petition for VT State Recognition, stating that it somehow validates or legitimizes his "VT Indigenous Alliance" (which was founded in 2008)....
The Dr./Professor/Ph.D.'s  "scholarly" arguments are "wishy-washy" dubious and questionable from the beginning to the end of it. It's damned near criminal and absurd if really one seriously looks at what has been going on.

What has the Dr./ Professor Wiseman Ph.D. or any of these Corporate "Abenaki" groups actually substantiated in this Application thus far? Other than that they are deceitful, dishonest, and non-transparent person's who claim to warm their Fisheye Bait under their tongues to keep them warm during Ice Fishing in the colder months?

Oral History
The Missisquoi Abenaki have a rich oral history. Much of this history has been documented on audio cassette tapes of the elders telling their stories that are housed at Tribal Headquarters. The three photos below show most of these oral history audio cassettes.

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Photos 3, 4 and 5. Shows a sample of Missisquoi oral histories recorded on audio cassettes.
[REDACTED] recounted a family history about an [REDACTED] who collected and sold wild plants, she was a medicine woman and a midwife. She helped several community members deliver their children. She knew the old ways and past some of that knowledge on to her children and other family members. They knew where to go to collect medicinal plants and the uses of them. [REDACTED] remembers fondly as she would go to [REDACTED] home as a child. Here are some photos of [REDACTED] provided by [REDACTED] that were taken at [REDACTED] 81st Birthday Party in 1983.
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(Two Photographs)
Photograph 1
[REDACTED] & Her Children
Photograph 2
[REDACTED] & Relatives

Other fishing/hunting anecdotes there are citizens within the tribe that can catch walleye by using just their hands, rubbing the fishes belly and throwing them up on shore; Many citizens still hunt, fish, trap and collect plants and medicinal herbs daily. Wild plant/medicinal plant collection techniques are still common today some are used for medicine and some are for consumption. Several people within our community have certain recipes that have been handed down from generation to generation. Chief April remembers as a child growing up eating wild animals that not everyone in the community would eat. Her friends would not eat at her house unless they knew for sure there was no wild game for dinner. The Chief's family did a lot of hunting, fishing, trapping, and gathering of wild plants, berries and nuts. These activities were done as a family everyone learned how to live off the land. This is what has been hand down from generation to generation and continues to be taught to today's generations as well.

St. Francis/Sokoki Missisquoi Abenaki Application For Vermont State Recognition PAGES 25 through 39, Etc:

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Figure 6. "Crossed Standard diamond" cowiss style Missisquoi Abenaki ash-splint basket.
Bundled sweetgrass reinforced rim.
Ca. 1890-1920. Made by Lapan Family or a close relative

The fact that the Missisquoi region had a remarkably large community of Indian basket makers was described by the June 19, 1893 St. Albans Messenger, "Twenty four Indians have encamped at Kingfisher Bay near Swanton, and are busy plying their trade of basket making to catch the stray nickel." This shoreline encampment was a significant Indigenous seasonal settlement, probably around five families, who would have erected several tents or wigwams, and built fire pits. The Kingfisher Bay occupation was independent of the Panadis family bi-national basket sellers who were headquartered at Highgate Springs. Odanak elder Cecile Wawanolet, who came to Highgate Springs with the Panadis family in the second quarter of the 20th century, said that their temporary camp and display tent was located at what was known in the late 19th century as "Shipyard Bay," where the tour ships and summer camps gave them a good livelihood. During this period, the Lapan family was widely known as the premiere Indian basket making family in the Swanton/Highgate/Sheldon area. Their late 19"' and early 20th century utility and fancy baskets (probably Figure 6 and definitely Figure 7) as well as articles of their "Indian Costume" (a Niagara-style "princess crown") and tools (a pine "basket mold") are curated at the W├┤banakik Heritage Center, having been donated by [REDACTED] descendant Jesse Lapan and other Swantonians. The latest documented Lapan basket in the Center's decadent style unlike those made in elsewhere, and dated 1943 (Figure 7). The old Abenaki basket makers have not been forgotten. Ms. Polly Parre of Swanton, VT still has ash splint materials (woven chair seats) made for her by the Lapans in the 1950's. In addition, Swanton's elderly still remember the local Indians with a measure of fondness. Ms. Lucille Bell said, in the January 7, 1996 Burlington Free Press, "I remember we had an Indian family here (Swanton, VT), and the woman made baskets and used to come around door to door to sell them. We didn't make a big thing of it and neither did they."
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Figure 7. "Standard diamond" style Basket, Missisquoi, VT, dated "1943," in ink on bottom.

The latest well-documented Lapan ash-splint basket, as an allied alternative to the almost ubiquitous ash-splint basket crafting, local Native people collected and/or marketed medicinal herbs. The earliest local evidence of this Indigenous medicinal herbal collecting and processing activity is an artifact from John Colson, the "Indian Nurse" who lived between Swanton and St. Albans. He sold "Indian medicines" in well printed glass bottles, some of which still remain (Figure 8). It is interesting that the label is bilingual, indicating sales to local francophone Vermonters. This is a 19"' century "anchor" documentation of an active, long-term herbal collecting activity by people of professed Native identity in Franklin Co. VT.

Later, the Swanton "River Rats" (for discussion of their Indigenous ethnicity see Wiseman 2001, Voice of the Dawn: 120-132) used to collect local plants as a source of income at least into the 1960's. As a child, Dr. Fred Wiseman helped his adult "River Rat" friend Monkey Drew gather skullcap (Scutellaria lateriflora) in the marshes of the Missisquoi River delta. He remembers that there was a man who would show up in the parking lot across from Swanton's "Merchant's Row" and would pay for skullcap and other herbs. Wiseman remembers "making a dollar as my cut of the profits."
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 Figure 8. John Colson "Indian Nurse" bottle, ca 1860 with "St. Albans, VT" label.


By the late 19th and early 20th centuries, the Euroamerican ethnic signifier of Swanton-area Indigenous people had evolved from the Green Mountain Democrat's "Missisques" to Abbe Hemmingway's 1883 "St. Francis Indians" in the VT Historical Gazetteer (Vol. IV:945). Documentations that this ambiguous "St. Francis Indians" ethnic signifier was geographically tied to the Missisquoi region (rather than referring to Quebec Mission villages such as Odanak) is literally "engraved in stone" on the 1909 Monument to the Catholic Missisquoi mission. This inscription, still standing today on Monument Road, Highgate, VT, names local Indians as "St. Francis Indians." In the second quarter of the 20th century, the State of Vermont's Eugenics Survey records (as recently published by the VT Attorney General) listed a mixed French/Indian sub-community called today "the Back Bay" in Swanton, VT, and census-listed residents of this geographically restricted community are the grandparents of a local population of living people who consider themselves Native American. In the first half of the 20th century, the, Back Bay (as well as a few isolated families elsewhere in Swanton/Highgate towns) was composed of a set of "core" family bands. There was apparently some kind of formal leadership of these core bands. This fact was hinted at in a mid 20th century quote by Swanton collector and historian Ben Gravel.
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I remember when I was a hid (in the late 19th century), we had a chief in (Swanton) town.

Ben Gravel, June 1968. (Wiseman, 2001, Voice of the Dawn p. 144)

There is evidence that the Abenaki language was used by Missisquoi elders during this period. Years ago, Swanton historian Ben Gravel told author Fred Wiseman that the Abenaki language was spoken in Swanton into the 1950's. The Elnu Tribe's genealogist, Vera Longtime Sheehan, confirmed this anecdote; recounting a family story from her Missisquoi grandmother (d. 2003) of the use of the Abenaki language by the Missisquoi Indian community in the late 19th or early 20th century. Sheehan's grandmother said "The older folks did the talking... in those days you were quiet, unless spoken to. The older folks would talk to me, but I couldn't understand them... Because they didn't speak English." What did they speak," Sheehan asked her gramdmother. "The old language," she answered.

Irish Gaelic language?

According to former Chief Homer St. Francis, when he was a child, "the older folks," the heads of these family bands used to meet around his father's, and other kitchen tables, to discuss issues of mutual concerns. St. Francis remembered free Canadian/American border crossing by Indians as being one of the issues discussed. Although the young St. Francis was not privy to the intricacies of the (1940's-early 1950's?) discussions, he remembered that decision-making seemed to be informal, respectful (usually) and by consensus.

Many Border Passes were issued to Missisquoi citizens to facilitate trade between the two countries. The example provided below was issued to Grand Chief Homer St. Francis. This document was handed down to Grand Chief Homer St. Francis by his father.


Received November 5, 1914
The bearer Grand Chief
Homer St. Francis

Number or Tribe

being also regarded as a North American Indian whose aboriginal and inherent rights and privileges are further recognized by Article III of the JAY TREATY of 1794... and further verified in the following communication excerpt. ..... in behalf of the Iroquois and other Indians in Canada, : that they be relieved from all taxes or duties in their trade and intercourse with the people of the United States. I enclose herewith for your information that all Indians arc free of duties passing or repassing the boundary lines of the United States, andCanada, and also freed of taxes, license in trading and selling beadwork, hark-work, baskets, snow shoes, moccasins, medicines, ect., ect., of their own manufacturing in premises.
A copy of Department reply thereto.
I am, very respectful
J.F. HORTHEY, Assistant

"Grand Chief" Homer Walter St. Francis, Sr. was born on January 19, 1935 in Swanton, Vermont to his (adoptive?) parents Nazaire St. Francis, Jr. and Florence (nee: Ethier dit Hakey). Nazaire Jr. and Florence married on October 22, 1913 in Swanton, Vermont. Nazaire and Florence had their first child Dorothy Delia (nee: St. Francis) Phillips on March 05 1914 in Swanton. Homer Sr. married on December 15, 1962 to Patricia "Patsy" Rae (nee: Partlow) daughter o Clifford Partlow and Marion Addie (nee: Friot). "Grand Chief" Homer St. Francis Sr. died on July 07, 2001.

So, how could the Office of Indian Affairs receive a PERMIT on November 05, 1914 signed by "Grand Chief" Homer St. Francis as representative of the "Abenaki Nation" when Homer Sr. wasn't even born yet? Even if his father Nazaire St. Francis Jr. allegedly "handed down to his son" "Grand Chief" Homer St. Francis Sr. this particular document dated November 05, 1914, it still is dubious and questionable, simply because IF Nazaire St. Francis Jr. had this, WHY isn't his signature on it, instead of his youngest son's signature, who was not even born until January 19th of 1935?
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Each core family bind bad, and in some cases maintains, its own distinguishing subsistence grounds along the Missisquoi River Valley; and protocols for admitting others into these subsistence. Dr. Wiseman's grandfather, used to visit [REDACTED] Ed Hakey a Missisquoi patriarch, who is [REDACTED] in the 1950's, whenever he wished to fish an "above the dam section of the Missisquoi River. [REDACTED] Wiseman's grandfather (and father after him) used to bring Mr. Hakey a present of a fishing lure, or some equivalent item of value as a sign of respect. Wiseman's family's traditional fishing territory was "the reef" a linear, north trending ledge and boulder ridge on the bottom of Missisquoi Bay. It was that family's responsibility to mark the north end of the reef for other fishermen with a red-painted wooden buoy (?-1979), or later (1979-1985) a plastic gallon milk-jug. jug, This "buoying the reef' tradition was maintained every May until Wiseman's father's death. This history is evidence of resource partitioning and protocols for gaining permission from community leaders to use the resource zones -- persisting into living memory.

In addition, family bands hunted and collected in partitioned floodplain and upland zones of the Missisquoi Valley. These subsistence zones were long-term, spatially consistent and bounded within themselves, yet cut across existing property and town lines, and even the more fluid hunting and fishing areas of Missisquoi's Franco VT and Anglo VT neighbors. These use areas had seasonally occupied "cottages" or deer camps signing the core of the area -- from the "Grandma Lampman" territory (marked with an historical ca. 1995 plaque SEE Pages 11 and 12 of the Final Determination Decision + Footnotes regarding this Grandma Lampman plaque) at Maquam on the shores of Lake Champlain, through the uplands between Swanton and Highgate [REDACTED] (Wiseman's grandmother's family [the Ouimet's] area was 'Woods Hill/Marble Quarry Hill on the south shore of the River), and at least as far upriver as the St. Francis' well-known and attended Berkshire camp. In addition, there remain enduring nuances of hunting and fishing practice that signal Native heritage. On Missisquoi Bay (Highgate, VT), Abenaki ice fishermen warm their fish-eye bait under their tongues, a practice considered "gross" by their Anglo and Franco-VT neighbors. In Wiseman's classes at Johnson State College, "I tell of this practice, and ask if my students or their families warm the fish-eyes in this way. Many do not, but some, even from the Northeast Kingdom, share this practice." Every ice fisherman has strong personal feelings, positive or negative of this practice—and these feelings are repeatedly correlated with other familial traces of Native ancestry/tradition.

A unique subsistence tool also remains as evidence of local Native identity. Almost every museum in the Northeast has at least one of the distinctive Wabanaki-style three pronged fish spears used by the Micmacs, Maliseets, Penobscot and Passamaquoddy Native People of Maine and the Canadian Maritimes. Apparently, this device was unknown at the Odanak, QC Abenaki settlement so Wiseman donated one from Western Maine to the Musee des Abenakis so Odanak would have an example. This spear has a central bone or metal spike and two wood "guides" to direct the fish onto the central barb. Mr. Hakey of Swanton had a wooden example that he "used before the war (WWII) below the dam in Swanton" to spear eels (Figure 9). This example is almost identical in construction to other traditional fish spears and completely different than any other type of Euroamerican eel or fish spear, which has all-metal heads with several barbed prongs, and lack the distinctive "guides".
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Figure 9. Wabanaki-style fish spear. Maple wood with iron wire skewer, wrapping is new.
Ed Hakey Swanton, VT, early 20"' century.

This old geographic subsistence pattern may extend farther afield and calls for future research. For example, Peter Miller's Vermont People (Silver Print Press) has a "biopic" of a Mr. Larry Benoit, a modem-era, regionally renowned deer hunter originally from the Montgomery, VT area. Mr. Benoit freely credits his hunting prowess, in part, to an admitted Indian ancestry. The Montgomery Benoits may be the "tip of the iceberg" of yet another, still unstudied regional partitioning family band. This distinctive, family band-based subsistence pattern is similar to that described by anthropologist Frank Speck in pp. 203 — 212 of Penobscot Man; a persistent Indigenous land use and tenure pattern that is repeated in other VT cultural regions.

It was in Swanton's Back Bay where the family band leaders met around the kitchen tables that began Missisquoi's well documented cultural revival in the 1960's (Figure 10). Research done for the St. Francis/Sokoki Band recognition petition to the federal government, showed a statistically significant rate of endogamy (in-marriage) in the Back Bay community at this time —evidence of mid-century ethnic/cultural distinctness and a communal separation from the larger Franklin County, VT community. For ease of communication, this indigenous community abandoned the "St. Francis Indian" appellation (except for political purposes), and adopted the Euroamerican term "Abenaki" with the English (A-ben-aki) rather than Quebequois (A-ben'-aki) pronunciation. The "A-ben-aki" accenting became a cultural code for VT polity, and so has been a functional political/geographic separator of local Indigenous people, lineages and polities from their Quebec brethren and their supporters. As the early focus of the VT Abenaki renaissance, Missisquoi became a cultural magnet for other Vermont families and communities that retained a Native identity or memory of antecedent familial Native identity. Before the 1990's, it was the sole externally recognized Abenaki political entity in Vermont, and so attracted [solicited] citizenship throughout the state and beyond its borders. It was a huge influence on other VT Indigenous regional leadership such as Nulhegan's, Nancy Cote, or Koasek's Nancy Doucet, as they have
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repeatedly told scholars over the years. Since (the 1970's there have been political splinter groups and schisms at Missisquoi caused by inter-personal rivalries and philosophical differences. These sub-groups either disintegrated (such as the Traditional Bands of Mazipskoik) or are family-based, and were therefore not a in the political/legalistic sense we use in this petition. As the only 21st century polity at Missisquois; the St. Francis/Sokoki Band, with a proud history, a well established tribal census roll, headquarters and museum as well as cultural and economic programs, and well represents its legacy.

Figure 10. 1950's-60's Hand loomed beaded leather brow-band.
The earliest known artifact of the Missisquoi Abenaki renaissance.

In this section we have provided rich and layered forensic evidence of a community that was seen as Native by European observers over the years. It has left internally consistent archaeological and physical anthropological evidence of a corporate community entity that had enough collective control over land resources to maintain a multi-generation 19th century burial ground. Missisquoi exhibits an extended riverine land use and tenure system that mirrors that of other regional native peoples. Missisquois were specifically described as Indian craftspeople throughout the 19th and 20th centuries, confirmed by remaining ethnically-distinctive baskets and tools from the area. There remains abundant anecdotal memory in the community of distinctive "Indian" artifacts and language. The modern "St. Francis/Sokoki Band" polity is composed of tribal rolls of community members whose ancestry descends from these 19th and 20th century "Indians," exercises internal political power, and represents its citizens in local and state Euroamerican politics. It is our judgment that the St. Francis/Sokoki Band meets the cultural geographic and historical criteria for political designation as an Abenaki tribe.

THIS 1974-1976 CREATED



Missisquoi archeological sites and burial grounds:

There are 213 Abenaki archeological sites located in Franklin County that are listed in the Vermont Archeological Inventory (VAI), six of which are classified as burial sites. There are twenty-two recorded precontact Abenaki archeological sites recorded on the VAI in Grand Isle County, three of them are classified as burial sites. Many of these archeological sites are threatened by development and some sites have been severally disturbed or completely
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destroyed. There are many more Missisquoi burial sites located in Franklin and Grand Isle counties but they are kept secret according to tradition to protect these sites from looting and grave desecration. When such sites are threatened by house development or other destructive forces Missisquoi elders and community members who hold this knowledge will then share it with others in hopes of protecting these sacred burial grounds. The State of Vermont purchased four Missisquoi Abenaki burial sites in fee simple in Franklin County that are located on [REDACTED] Towns of Highgate and Swanton [REDACTED]. Thanks to the resolve of and financial assistance from the Vermont Housing and Conservation Board, the state also purchased the development rights pit in the Town of Alburg in Grand Isle County to protect the remainder of a large Missisquoi cemetery site before it was completely destroyed by gravel extraction. These properties were purchased by the State for the sole purpose of protecting the Missisquoi ancestors' graves. Wobanaki Inc. purchased part of a cemetery site in Highgate to protect it from house development and they also procured the 100+ acre Brunswick Springs site in Essex County to protect it from development.

NO, the "St. Francis/Sokoki" "Abenaki" Corporate's Wobanaki, Inc. DID NOT purchase or procure the 100+ Brunswick Springs site in Essex County, Vermont. Penelope Newcomb, and the Pequot DONATION'S along with a MATCHING GRANT procured the Brunswick Springs site! Secondly, April (St. Francis) Merrill kept ONLY 5 (five) acres (where the actual 7 Springs flow down into the Connecticut River). The remainder of the property Wobanaki, Inc. then sold the rights to develop the land, through an easement, to the Vermont Land Trust on Oct. 22.

Abenaki oral history places the approximate location of the contact period Missisquoi village somewhere on the United States Fish &Wildlife's Missisquoi Wildlife Refuge in Swanton. In 2010, while investigating what appeared to be archeological features eroding out of the banks of the Missisquoi River and Dead Creek on the Wildlife Refuge, David Skinas, archeologist with the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service, and Scott Dillon, archeologist with the Vermont Division for Historic Preservation, recovered artifacts of French origin that were found in context with traditional Abenaki artifacts and cultural features that represent fire hearths, storage-refuse pits and what appears to be the occupational floor of the village itself. This recent archeological find verifies the existence of the Missisquoi village during early French settlement of the region and validates Missisquoi oral history.

Repatriation efforts:

The disturbance of several burial sites in Franklin and Grand Isle Counties in the late 20th and early 21rst centuries serves to prove that Missisquoi occupied this area of what is now Vermont throughout the historic period into modern times. That is one GIANT LEAP for Dr. Wiseman Ph.D. to make ..."into modern times"! During the excavation of a [REDACTED] in 1973 on [REDACTED] Highgate a large Missisquoi burial ground dating to 2,500-2,000 years ago was destroyed. The University of Vermont carefully exhumed the graves and their contents. The Boucher Cemetery contained at least 80 documented burials, some of which were adomed with exotic grave offerings that suggest long-distance trade or expeditions to the upper Midwest and Southeast. Some of the graves contained copper beads that came from sources in the Great Lakes area, included with other bodies were ritually broken blocked-end tube pipes made of special clay found only in the Ohio River Valley. Some of the stone blades included with the burials were of a unique material that only comes from the Ohio River Valley. Other burials had shell beads that originated from warm ocean waters along the Carolinas or perhaps the Gulf of Mexico. In 1996 the State of Vermont finally purchased the Boucher cemetery site, removed the house, septic system and swimming pool and helped Missisquoi leadership reinter the exhumed bodies as close as possible to their original locations where they now rest in peace once again.
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In May of 1988 Chief Homer St. Francis contacted the Vermont Division for Historic Preservation (VDHP) to alert them about Abenaki burials eroding out of the bank of the Missisquoi River in Highgate at the Monument Site located at the end of Monument Road. The Monument Site is where the diocese erected a granite monument in August of 1938 to commemorate the Jesuit Mission that was established there circa 1740 to convert Missisquoi citizens to Catholicism, The VDHP survey archeologist arrived on-site and recovered dozens of human bones on the eroding bank that represented at least four individuals, When the developer learned of these finds he quickly tried to subdivide the land into building lots and excavated soil test pits to obtain a town building permit. To counter the imminent destruction of yet another burial ground on Monument Road the VDHP worked with the Attorney General's Office to get a restraining order on the landowner to prevent him from causing further ground disturbance until the matter could be resolved. During the subsequent legislative session the Vermont Legislature approved funding for VDHP to purchase the property and protect that Missisquoi burial ground. The human remains that were recovered from the bank in the spring of 1988 were reentered on-site later in the summer. In 1991 the VDHP was able to secure funding to install rock rip rap to stabilize the eroding bank to better protect the burial ground.

In 1990 the VDHP survey archeologist collaborated with the Smithsonian Institute archeologist, Bruno Frohlich, to conduct a non-intrusive Electro Magnetic Induction (EMI) study of another Monument Road house lot in Highgate were more burials were expected to exist. Soil anomalies suspected as being human graves were detected during the EMI survey on the LaRoche property but before the State could take action to stop any ground disturbance the landowner had excavated a large foundation hole. The VDHP and Missisquoi Abenaki went to district court and obtained a restraining order against the landowner to prevent further excavation and house building until the matter could be resolved. Within a year the VDHP had approval from the Vermont Legislature to purchase this property to prevent further site destruction.

In 2000 another house foundation was being excavated on [REDACTED] the so called Bushy site, and more human remains were discovered, fal ling out o the back dirt Again, the VDHP was able to obtain a restraining order to prevent further burial ground disturbance. The ALLEGED and REINVENTED Missisquoi Abenaki, in partnership with the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service, University of Vermont Consulting Archeological Program, Archeology Consulting Team, University of Maine at Farmington and other archeologists volunteered to help Missisquoi citizens sift through the 300-400 cubic yards of foundation back dirt to recover the displaced ancestral graves. At least 27 sets of human remains were identified and grave goods included with these burials confirmed that this cemetery was used and managed from the late 17th century into the 19th century. More importantly, the non-destructive analysis of the Bushy Site burials and grave contents proved to the State of Vermont that the Missisquoi community maintained control over its tribe during historic times and had not fled into Canada after the American Revolution as the Attorney General's Office claimed in an effort to thwart Missisquoi's petition for federal recognition.

I will beg to differ with that assessment/ conclusion. Again, Dr. Wiseman Ph.D. appears to be "scholarly vindictive and vengeful" towards not only the findings of FACTS and CONCLUSION but also in regards to the Federal Recognition Process and the VT Attorney General William H. Sorrell which includes Eve Jacobs-Carnahan, regarding the "State of Vermont's Response to the Petition for Federal Acknowlegment of the St. Francis/Sokoki Band of the Abenaki Nation of Vermont."

After the disturbance of this Missisquoi burial ground on Monument Road in 2000 the Towns of Swanton and Highgate, residents on Monument Road and the Missisquoi leadership met over the course of a year to come up with a special zoning policy for this section of the respective towns to more appropriately deal with unmarked Abenaki graves in advance of house development. It
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also called for non-intrusive archeological investigations to help locate unmarked Missisquoi cemeteries.

The 2002 Monument Road Unmarked Burial Protocol:

This section describes the efforts of the Missisquoi leadership and the USDA NRCS to comply with the Monument Road Protocol. A Special Sites Burial Fund was also established by the Vermont Legislature to help fund these investigations. See Appendix 2 for the reports of archeological investigations that were conducted in the spirit of this innovative zoning law and other repatriation efforts.


1. Purpose: The Monument Road Working Committee, made up of landowners, Native Americans and Town officials, produced a proposal whose purpose was: to develop a workable policy that would create trust, confidence and harmony between property owners and Native Americans; to insure property owners' rights, privacy and property values; to preserve and protect Native American ancestral burial grounds. This by-law, based on the Committee's proposed policy, is intended to establish, on an interim basis, standards and procedures to identify sites that contain such remains and provide for their protection without undue burden on property owners.

During the period this by-law remains in effect, the Town, working together with the State of Vermont, Native American representatives and private property owners, will initiate efforts to develop long-term methods to ensure that the remains of Native Americans are dealt with in a respectful manner without placing unreasonable restrictions on lands which contain such remains.

2. Definitions:

Division for Historic Preservation - That division within the Vermont Department of Housing and Community Affairs created pursuant to 22 V.S.A. §721 to coordinate historic preservation activities on behalf of the state of Vermont.

State Historic Preservation Officer - That individual appointed pursuant to 22 V.S.A. §722 to supervise and direct the division for historic preservation.

State Archeologist - That individual employed by the state historic preservation officer pursuant to 22 V.S.A. §761(a) to conduct and maintain a survey of sites of archeological and anthropological specimens located within the state.
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Qualified Anthropologist - An individual who, by education and professional experience, has the expertise to identify human remains and determine their cultural origin.

Qualified Professional - An individual who, by education and professional experience, has the expertise to identify human skeletal remains.

Significant concentration of human remains - An area having four (4) or more sets of human remains per one thousand (1,000) square foot area.

Minimal concentration of human remains - An area having three (3) or fewer sets of human remains per one thousand (1,000) square foot area.

Site Examination - The study of human remains at any site by means of surveying, digging, sampling, excavating, or removing surface or subsurface materials.

Native American Representative — A member of the Abenaki Tribal Council.

Governor's Advisory Commission on Native American Affairs - That commission established pursuant to Executive Order No. 97-90 on November 22, 1990, which executive order is codified in the chapter 18 of the appendix to Title 3 of the Vermont Statutes Annotated.

3. Designation of District: There is hereby established a Native American Sites District which is shown and depicted on a map entitled, "Town of Highgate, Native American Sites District," dated May 29, 2002.

4. Permit Requirement: No land development shall commence within the Native American Sites District prior to issuance of a permit under this by-law by the Administrative Officer as provided below:

A. Upon determination that the proposed land development does not involve excavation to a depth more than eighteen inches (18") below existing grade, the Administrative Officer shall issue a permit.

B. Upon determination that the proposed land development does involve excavation to a depth more than eighteen inches (18") below existing grade, the Administrative Officer shall attempt to determine based on information obtained pursuant to Section 5 below, whether any portion of the area to be excavated is within ten feet (10') of an area on the site containing a significant concentration of human remains. An applicant may provide such information but is not required to do so.

(1) Upon determination that the area to be excavated is not within ten feet (10') of an area on the site containing a significant
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concentration of human remains, the Administrative Officer shall issue a permit allowing excavation to proceed with due caution.

(2) Upon determination that the area to be excavated is within 10 feet (10') of an area on the site containing a significant concentration of human remains, no permit may be issued. The Town will work with the property owner, Native American representatives and other interested federal, state, local and private interests to preserve and protect the affected parcel or area.

(3) If the information described in Section 5 is not provided or is unavailable, the Administrative Officer shall issue a permit subject to express requirements that:

(a) The applicant provide the Town six (6) business days advance notice before initiating any excavation.

(b) The Town shall, at its expense, have a qualified professional on the property to monitor activity during the period that excavation occurs. This monitor must be on site when excavation first begins and shall have authority to order an immediate cessation of excavation work upon discovery of any human remains.

(c) Applicant shall immediately cease excavation work when so ordered by the Town's monitor. Once ordered to cease excavation work, Applicant shall not resume excavation work until authorized to do so by the Administrative Officer.

(d) Upon discovery of human remains, the Town may, at its expense, conduct further examination of the area to be excavated in the manner set forth in Section 5.B below. The Administrative Officer shall not authorize resumption of excavation work until completion of the actions and/or expiration of the time periods set forth in Section 6 below.

C. Any permit issued pursuant to this by-law shall require compliance with the requirements of Section 6, below.

5. Examination of Property:

A. Determination that a proposed excavation site contains or does not contain human remains subject to the provisions of this by-law shall be- based on information prepared by a qualified professional following examination of the proposed site using the best non-intrusive technology available. At the property owner's request, the services of a qualified professional may be obtained by:
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(1) any property owner, at no expense to the Town; or

(2) the Town, at its expense; or

(3) the State Historic Preservation Officer, at the State's expense; or

(4) a Native American Representative, at no expense to the property owner.

B. Any site examination conducted by the Town, State Historic Preservation Officer or Native American representative shall comply with the following requirements:

(1) be subject to a property owner's consent, except as provided in Section 6.D below;

(2) be performed in a professional manner that minimizes disturbance of the owner's property and minimizes inconvenience to the owner;

(3) provides for restoration of any disturbed property to a condition adequate to return the property to its pre-disturbance state within a reasonable time following completion of the examination;

(4) be performed at no expense to the property owner.

6. Procedure Upon Discovery of Human Remains:

A. The Administrative Officer and/or property owner shall contact the Vermont State Police for determination of whether the human remains are part of a criminal incident. During this period, the property owner shall take such actions as the State Police direct and are necessary to protect the remains from the elements,

B. Upon notification from the State Police that the human remains are unrelated to a criminal incident, the Administrative Officer shall promptly contact a qualified anthropologist selected by the Town selectboard for determination of the cultural origin of the remains. The anthropologist will be asked to report such determination to the Administrative Officer within six (6) business days.

C. If the anthropologist reports that the remains are not Native American, or if the anthropologist fails to make a determination within the required time, the Administrative Officer shall authorize resumption of excavation work, Thereafter, the property owner shall make disposition of the remains in
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accordance with 18 V.S.A. §5212 and any other applicable law. The notification and examination process set forth in Section 6 shall be followed if further human remains are discovered upon resumption of excavation work.

D. If the remains are determined to be Native American, the Administrative Officer will notify the property owner, the Governor's Advisory Commission on Native American Affairs, the State Historic Preservation Officer and a Native American representative. Determination that the remains are Native American will provide authorization for the Town to conduct a site examination pursuant to Section 5.B above.

E. If it is determined following the site examination that the area to be excavated contains a minimal concentration of human remains, the Administrative Officer shall, within five (5) business days of such determination, hold a meeting to discuss disposition of the remains. The Administrative Officer shall invite the property owner, the State Historic Preservation Officer and a Native American representative to this meeting.

(1) At this meeting, the participants will discuss options for disposition of the remains which shall include, without limitation:

(a) Leave the remains in place and move the project to avoid the remains or continue the project in a manner that will not further disturb the remains; or

(b) Leave the remains in place and discontinue the project; or

(c) Leave the remains in place and arrange for permanent protection of the area in which they are located; or

(d) Allow the remains to be removed from the property by the Native American representative within seven (7) days of this meeting.

(2) If the property owner and the Native American representative agree on disposition of the remains, the Administrative Officer shall modify the existing permit or void any existing permit and issue a new permit which shall incorporate as conditions the agreed-upon disposition.

(3) If the property owner and the Native American

representative do not agree on disposition of the remains, the Native American representative shall have seven (7) days from the date the meeting concludes to remove the remains. If the remains have not been removed, the property owner shall make disposition of the remains in
accordance with 18 V.S.A. §5212 and any other applicable law. The Administrative Officer shall promptly authorize resumption of excavation work upon expiration of such time periods

F. If it is determined following the site examination and any excavation that the area to be excavated is within ten feet (10') of an area on the site containing a significant concentration of Native American remains, the Administrative Officer shall void any existing permit. Within five (5) business days of such determination, the Administrative Officer will hold a meeting to discuss preservation and protection of the remains. The Administrative Officer shall invite the property owner, the State Historic Preservation Officer and a Native American representative to this meeting. The participants will discuss options for leaving the remains in place and arranging for permanent protection of the area in which they are located by acquisition of the land or rights in the land.

7. Effect on Existing Regulations: This interim zoning by-law shall not repeal or alter any existing ordinances, regulations or by-laws of the Town of Highgate. This bylaw establishes restrictions that are in addition to those contained in any other town ordinance, by-law or regulation.

8. Enactment Provisions: This interim zoning by-law is enacted pursuant
to the provisions of 24 V.S.A. §4410 and the Highgate Zoning By-Laws and shall be effective upon passage.

ENACTED by the Town of Highgate Selectboard this___day of____2002,

By: __________________________ 
Witness: ______________________
Date:  ________________________

Here, one can begin to "see" the evidence documentarily wherein the VT Department of Historical Preservation Agency/Department has had, and continues to nurture a "working relationship" with the "Abenaki Corporation" Entity claiming to be thee "Missisquoi" "St. Francis" / "Sokoki" "Abenaki" "Tribe" based in Swanton, Franklin County, Vermont. Each uses the other, to validate each other. Upon locating the Bushey Burial Grounds, the contemporary Corporate Entity claiming to be the St. Francis/Sokoki Abenaki Missisquoi Nation or Tribe simply pointed to the ground, where the bones were discovered, and stated "those are our Abenaki ancestors." Genealogically, this has not been proven, even remotely-speaking. So, the VDHP, along with David Skinas and David Lacey, began to create and clutivate/promote the "scholarly" MYTH that the Burial Site's throughout Franklin County, Vermont pertain to the contemporary "St. Francis/Sokoki" group's ancestors, without ever bothering to do the genealogical work, in which to verify such relationship between those buried vs. those that were claiming those human remains as their own ancestors.
Just like this "St. Francis/Sokoki" group (along with John Moody and others) began to create and cultivate/promote the "scholarly" Eugenics/Sterilization of the Abenakis in Vermont MYTH throughout the years since Kevin Dann found the Eugenic's Survey Documents in 1986).

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