On August 30, 2002 the U.S. District Court (District of Oregon) in determining that the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act did not apply to the set of human remains known as "Kennewick Man", ordered that the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers allow for study of the Kennewick collection, subject to the "terms and conditions routinely imposed when studies of objects subject to [the Archaeological Resources Protection Act] are carried out." Bonnichsen v. United States, 217 F. Supp. 2d 1116, 1167 (D. Or. 2002). This decision was affirmed by the Ninth Circuit. Bonnichsen v. United States, 367 F.3d 864, 882 (9th Cir. 2004).
The plaintiff scientists have proposed a number of studies since that time which the Corps has reviewed in light of its responsibility to "protect and preserve the condition, research potential, religious or sacred importance, and uniqueness of the collection." 36 C.F.R. § 79.10(a). The scientists have conducted a number of studies with the aim to learn more about the life and death of Kennewick Man. Given the interest in these studies by the public, this site was developed to provide the public with some of the key documents regarding the curation and study of the Kennewick collection.
Questions regarding either the studies or the curation of the remains can be directed to the Public Affairs office via telephone at (503) 808-3722.