Thursday, September 14, 2017

Tribes want name changes in Yellowstone

After successes by tribal nations renaming geographical features in Alaska and South Dakota Yellowstone National Park could see at least two name changes.

Hayden Valley memorializes Ferdinand V. Hayden who advocated for “extermination” of tribal people and Mount Doane is named for Lieutenant Gustavus Doane who led a massacre of the Piikani, part of the Blackfoot Confederacy.

According to US Geological Survey officials the Board on Geographic Names has received no official proposal to change the names to Buffalo Nations Valley and First People's Mountain.

Senator Lisa Murkowski and the US Park Service are doing what Alaskans are asking of Congress urging the body to approve a name change for North America's highest peak to Denali, an Athabascan name meaning “the high one.”

This blogger has been arguing for Lakota names on South Dakota's geological features for at least twenty years. It is the opinion of this blog now that the mountain is named for Black Elk, named for a holy man who rejected the Roman Church, it should be in the Lakota language: loosely translated as Paha Heȟáka Sápa.

Tribal nations and pueblos in New Mexico are also mulling changes to events and geographical places that glorify Spanish colonizers.

It's time for the State of South Dakota to abandon Bear Butte State Park that it claimed through colonization and remand it to the tribes for governance so they can restore its name to Mato Paha and for the US Park Service to add the name Mahto Tipila to Devils Tower National Monument.

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