As a result of the 1990 Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act (NAGPRA), tribes across the country are actively seeking to reclaim burial items, skeletal remains and ceremonial objects. As part of this Act, all museums and institutions receiving federal funding are required to compile and publish lists of Native American items in their possession. The Mohegan Tribe's pursuit of its heritage has enhanced our connection to our past and some very meaningful artifacts have been returned.
One significant artifact returned to the Tribe through NAGPRA is the Uncas bowl. This wooden succotash bowl has two wolfhead handles and is believed to have belonged to Sachem Uncas.
Regional Water Plan
For many months leading up to an agreement in October 2003, the Mohegan Tribe worked with six adjoining cities and towns in Southeastern Connecticut to develop a water sharing plan. The Thames Basin Regional Water Interconnection Project involves a multi-municipal group including governments and water utilities of Groton, Ledyard, Montville, Norwich, Preston and Waterford, plus the Mohegan Tribe. Three years in the making, this program will enable the municipalities with surpluses to supply water to those lacking adequate water resources.
The project provides sufficient water quality and pressure for household, commercial and industrial uses, meeting public health, fire protection, redundancy and security needs. Perhaps more importantly, the project allows for future development in this fast-growing region.
In making the announcement, Tribal Chairman Mark F. Brown noted, “I can’t think of a more basic need than water. The Tribe noticed the struggle among these towns to find a solution and decided to help. We share the belief that neighbors working in concert benefits us all in the long term."
The project includes building a water main under the Thames River between Montville and Ledyard, adding water tanks in Ledyard and Waterford, and a water main under the Route 12 bridge in Preston and Ledyard for use during water supply emergencies. This will fulfill the needs in Montville, Waterford, Ledyard and Preston, while enabling Norwich and Groton to generate revenue from supplying water to these communities.
To help the project continue moving forward, the Mohegan Tribe is investing $9.8 million to give the municipalities time to raise their own funds. In addition, U.S. Rep Rob Simmons, R-2nd District requested funding for the project as a part of a House water project appropriations bill. This will help ease the burden on the municipalities.
Mohegan Tribe Opens State of the Art Energy, Environment, Economics and Education Center
Read the press release