Sacred land returned to Native Americans after 400 years | brooklyn muse

eagle strength© Brooklyn Muse

“As eagles are messengers of prayer, this area where they congregate has always been a place of natural, cultural and spiritual significance,” said Rappahannock Tribe Chief Anne Richardson.

The Native American Rappahannock Tribe of Virginia has now repossessed 465 acres of land in Fones Cliff, Virginia. This reacquisition on April 1, 2022 was made possible by the William Dodge Angle Family. They provided the funds to buy The Chesapeake Reservation. The Conservancy then donated this royalty title to the tribe. This project took several years to materialize. There was an additional grant funded by the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation by Acres of Walmart for America

The importance of restoring Native American lands cannot be denied. This is seen as a major step in reparations for the tribe and the incredible savage history they have endured. In addition, lost culture, heritage and language will once again be brought to the fore. The environmental impact of protecting this land as a haven for eagles and wildlife brings back a sense of intense Native American spirit to an abandoned space.

The Rappahannock Tribe of Virginia defended their sacred land in 1608 against English settler John Smith. The first permanent English settlement in America at Jamestown was commissioned by this same John Smith. In the 1660s, the Rappahannock tribe was permanently relocated according to The Chesapeake Conservancy. These specific cliffs were important for wildlife, culture, and of historical importance to the tribe itself. According to The Ministry of the Interiorthis area is home to the largest bald eagle nesting site in the United States of America.

The Rappahannock Tribe will use the land to focus on educating the public about their history, culture and past wildlife use in their area. Plans include building a 16th century village and a ‘Return to the River’ campaign to bring the history of their people into our modern world with specific education for young people. The youth of today and tomorrow will forever be part of America’s living history. We, as Americans, will step forward – recognize our faults and move forward to ensure a truthful interpretation of our past history.

” And so

no warning, no last goodbye

At the dawn of the morning sky

the eagle will rise again”

“The Eagle Shall Rise” The Alan Parsons Project

Nohemi M. Moore