Native American participation in Tennessee State Park planning|
Commissioners, Historians, Preservationists, Recreationists, Archaeologists, Council members, All,
The current questions regarding the future of the Pinson Reforestation Complex (West Tennessee Tree Nursery) on the Pinson Mounds National Historic Landmark brings up several issues regarding the preservation, protection and advocacy of Native American cultural resources owned and managed by the State of Tennessee.
The State of Tennessee owns many properties, including three State Parks (Pinson Mounds, Old Stone Fort, Red Clay), whose significance is directly tied to Native American culture, both past and present. There are no publicly-available Management Direction Statements for these properties and parks (www.state.tn.us/environment/parks/mgtplans.php), and there is no mention of Native American cultural resources or input in the 2003-2008 Tennessee State Recreation Plan or the August 2005 Tennessee State Parks Strategic Direction. The lack of reference to State-managed Native American cultural resources in State planning documents indicates a serious problem of cultural sensitivity and ethnic/racial representation in the State's land management practices.
The issue of continued tree farming on the Pinson Mounds State Archaeological Area/National Historic Landmark should be resolved by direct discussions with the interested parties, especially with Native American representatives, with the goal of creating a Cultural Resource Management Plan for Pinson Mounds which can then serve as a template and benchmark for developing Cultural Resource Management Plans for all other State properties of Native American cultural significance.
Plans to improve Native American advocacy in State site preservation, protection and interpretation should include the following changes:
Thank you in advance for your time and consideration. We look forward to your response.
ref. "Purpose of Management Direction Statement
Management Direction Statements provide strategic management direction for all state parks that do not have an updated full management plan. MDS do not negate the need for future, more detailed management plans. Management Direction Statements also describe protected area values, management issues and concerns; management strategy focused on immediate priority objectives and strategies; and directional statements from other planning processes."
- State Park Management Plan, Management Direction Statement, Bledsoe Creek State Park, July 2004, p 4
adopted unanimously by the Tennessee Commission of Indian Affairs
3 december 2005 Memphis
History: Approved by the Advisory Council on Tennessee Indian Affairs, November 12, 2005,
for recommendation to the Tennessee Commission of Indian Affairs.