Blog: Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe wants new treaty

"In 1976 the United States celebrated its 200th anniversary and descendants of the Mashpee Wampanoags filed a lawsuit in United States District Court claiming they had rights and title to more than 15,000 acres in the town of Mashpee. The total value of the property involved was pegged at $2 billion by legal scholars.

A 40-day trial raged and the process lasted through 1978 and much of 1979. The Wampanoags lost, but they appealed. The U.S. Appeals Court denied their petition and the tribe kept moving forward until they reached the Supreme Court where their petition was refused a hearing and shelved by the court. The whole process lasted 10 years. Some say, even today, that the issue of the Mashpee land ownership is still open.

More than 20 years later, the federal government has formally granted recognition to the Mashpee Wampanoags as a sovereign tribe. In a few lines of simple language more than three centuries of denial are erased.

So why are the residents of Mashpee worried? Apparently they are quite concerned. Yesterday the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribal Council was due to meet to vote on whether to ratify an agreement between the tribe and Town of Mashpee by which the tribe would agrees not to pursue any land claims in or against the Town of Mashpee, ever. If ratified, the agreement would be presented to the Mashpee selectmen on Monday, Sept. 10. And if approved by selectmen, the agreement will be presented at a special town meeting on Oct. 13."

Get the Story:
Why Mashpee wants another Treaty (Cape Cod Today 9/6)

Mashpee Casino Agreement:
Intergovernmental Agreement (July 2007)

Relevant Documents:
DOI Final Determination | Summary of Acknowledgment Cases | R. Lee Fleming Declaration

Only on Indianz.Com:
Federal Recognition Database V2.0 (May 2005)

Relevant Links:
Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe - http://mashpeewampanoagtribe.com

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