September 03, 2012

Tribes may buy Pe' Sla

Indians declare victory in their effort to buy the sacred Pe' Sla site:

Sioux Leaders of Pe’ Sla Land Movement in S.D. Announce Deal Between Tribes and Land Owner and Call for Unity Among Reservations; Celebration Rally Planned for Rapid CityLast Saturday, at a press conference in Eagle Butte, South Dakota, Lakota leaders of the movement to secure the Lakota pilgrimage site Pe’ Sla for the Sioux Nation announced that the tribes will purchase the 2000 acres of sacred land in the Black Hills. After several weeks of intense fundraising, the nine tribes raised enough to make a deal with the current owners of Pe’ Sla, Leonard and Margaret Reynolds—though details of the arrangement are still being negotiated. The fundraising effort on the part of the Sioux tribes was begun by Attorney Chase Iron Eyes, and the negotiations were carried out in part by Cheyenne River Tribal Councilwoman Robin Lebeau. Both leaders spoke on Saturday. Saturday’s action was organized by Last Real Indians and the Lakota People’s Law Project, two organizations operating in South Dakota that support the return of the Black Hills to the Sioux.Sioux are victorious in effort to restore Black Hills land to the tribes. Fund-raising continues

But a later article suggests the announcement may be premature:

Tribe pays on Black Hills land

But money doesn't necessarily mean sale, Rosebud Sioux say

By Steve Young
The Rosebud Sioux Tribe is making an earnest payment on land it considers sacred in the Black Hills, though tribal officials say that doesn’t mean a deal to buy it is imminent.

Alfred Walking Bull, a communications specialist for the tribe, said Tuesday that Rosebud has met the financial threshold to make an earnest payment on some or all of the 1,940 acres for sale two miles north of Deerfield Lake.

“A lot of people have taken this as a sign that the tribe is going to be able to buy the land,” Walking Bull said. “We don’t know that yet. It’s really too early to declare victory. We have met the conditions to be at the negotiating table. It would be premature to say the land is going to be ours.”

The owners of the ranchland known as Reynolds Prairie had planned to auction the property in five separate tracts Aug. 25 in Rapid City, but canceled the sale before it happened with no explanation. Leonard and Margaret Reynolds of Hill City would not comment about news of an earnest payment by Rosebud.
Comment:  For more on the subject, see Pe' Sla Auction Canceled.

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