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Rediscovery of the Tse-whit-zen Village and Native Burial Grounds


Yearbook of Cultural Property Law

At the wrenching conclusion of a three-year struggle to protect the centuries old Tse-whit-zen Village and ancestral burial ground in Port Angeles, Washington, none of the parties could be completely satisfied with the outcome. The Washington State Department of Transportation(WSDOT) had inadvertently begun to build an immense dry dock—known technically and ironically as a “graving” dock—on the site of an ancient Klallam Indian village and burial ground. When it stopped construction, WSDOT had spent $60 million with little to show for it, and was months behind on the repair of the critical Hood Canal Bridge.


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