Protect Native American Burial Ground

Target: Jim Nepstad, Superintendent of Effigy Mounds National Monument

Goal: Restore illegally damaged Native American burial grounds at a national monument

For nearly a decade, the sacred Native American grounds of Effigy Mounds National Monument in Iowa have been undergoing illegal construction. Costing approximately three million dollars, this construction took place under the watch of the National Park Service, who have done nothing to stop it.

The illegal construction consisted of installing boardwalks and other structures around the park, partly to make the park more handicapped-accessible. The park did not properly conduct archaeological research before the construction, which infringes on ancient burial mounds in the park.

Tim Mason, a park ranger who worked at the monument in the past, filed a complaint when he saw boardwalks and other structures being installed in the park. This led to a criminal investigation by a Park Service special agent, who found that the construction was violating federal and state laws, including the National Historic Preservation Act. The National Park Service is currently creating a corrective plan to ensure that nothing like this occurs again in the future.

Much damage has been done to the Effigy Mounds National Monument over the course of the past decade, and considerable restorative work needs to be done to correct this destruction. Please sign the petition below to urge the current park’s superintendent to plan and work toward restoring the sacred conditions of the park.


Dear Superintendent Nepstad,

It was quite shocking to read about the desecration of the ancient Native American burial mounds site that took place as a consequence of the construction at Effigy Mounds National Monument. Respecting the ancient Native American burial mounds in the park is necessary for preserving these people’s culture, and restoring the park to pre-construction conditions would be a viable option for overturning the injustice that has occurred. Restoration efforts will no doubt turn back much of the damage that was done to the park.

Please plan and work toward restoring the park to its condition prior to construction. The park depends on your efforts to ensure that its rich history and cultural heritage is properly persevered.


[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Bill Whittaker via Wikimedia Commons

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  1. Barbara Crank says:

    This should never have happened! We must respect all tribal lands and burial grounds. Not only is this protection necessary, but these grounds are part of history.

  2. Michelle Stephenson says:

    It’s a graveyard for gods sake! This should never been allowed, when people desecrate graveyards we go crazy so this is unbelievable.

  3. Are you kidding me. Have we not done enought damage to these people. If anything we should be giving them all of their land back, not digging up their ancestors.

  4. This country has historically disrespected the Native American Indians. The least they could do is allow the dead to lie undisturbed. That isn’t really asking too much.

  5. Alice D. Rosenfeld says:

    What a travesty! I support any efforts to require that the damage be restored.

  6. SpiritTracker says:

    This absolutely rips my heart out!!!. Haven’t the Natives suffered enough at the hands of the white man. When are the white men going to have a conscience? A heart, A soul?
    compassion for other living beings? This ancient burial ground MUST BE RESTORED AND LEFT ALONE!

    SpiritTracker – Eastern Band Cherokee

  7. Karen Remnant says:

    I would have thought us whites had caused enough harm to these people already! It shouldn’t need a petition to set things right! Can you imagine the uproar if members of the First Nation did something similar to one of our graveyards?

  8. Rachelle Roach says:

    To quote the late great, Native, Russell Means, if you are born in the USA, you too, are a Native American!
    Stand up people! Fight for our rights!
    Do not fear death, only fear not doing the right thing!

    Navajo, Viking

  9. I find this such a sick disgrace ! Seriously do they have no respect for those who have passed on….should we dig up ,
    “their “graves and desecrate them ?
    Native Americans have suffered enough at the hands of the Governments GREED !!!! Digging up the NA people’s graves of their ancestors is extremely disturbed !!!!!! This must end right now !! Enough is enough !!!!!!!

  10. I’m definitely going to share this on facebook. Sorry for my language but these pieces of shits shouldn’t be doing this. This just upsets me, I’m part Native American my grandfather from my fathers side is from The Lakota Sioux, my other grandfather from my mothers side is from the Cherokee. I have no respect for the US government…. 😛 they lie and the lies continued!

  11. The same thing is happening here in Britain and our national government and local authorities have done and are doing nothing about this assault on the feelings of the indigenous British people.
    Invaders, in the form of Muslims, have in recent years, taken over a number old Christian Churches with attached burial grounds and have converted the churches into islamic mosques and torn up and destroyed the Graves, Grave Stones and Monuments, in order to build extensions to make the mosques bigger and to create car parks for their cults worshippers.

  12. James Myles Head says:

    Native American burial grounds were robbed as soon as Spain, France and The British got off the damn ships!

  13. Helga Ganguly says:

    Grave desecration should never be allowed. But be careful in calling Muslims a cult. You tip your own hand.

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