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The AHP CPSU and ANCSA 14(h)(1) Historical Places and Cemetery Sites Collection

Documenting traditional land use and indigenous place names, Akiachak Alaska, summer 1988. (R. Drozda photo)
Documenting traditional land use and indigenous place names, Akiachak Alaska, summer 1988. (R. Drozda photo)

About the collection

The Anthropology and Historic Preservation, Cooperative Park Studies Unit (AHP CPSU) and Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act (ANCSA) 14(h)(1) Historical Places and Cemetery Sites Collection (informally “ANCSA Collection”) contains records relating to the implementation of Section 14(h)(1) of the ANCSA of 1971 (P.L. 92-203). A small percentage of records relate to anthropological research outside of the scope of the 14(h)(1) project.

Under ANCSA section 14(h)(1) historical places and cemetery sites identified by Alaska Natives and anthropologists were applied for as possible land withdrawals by Native Regional Corporations. The process of site investigation and selection began in the mid-1970s and continues today (2015). Investigations resulted in a large and varied body of data, some of which is archived at UAF. A separate and larger set of associated records is kept by the BIA ANCSA Office in Anchorage, Alaska. The collection is not fully processed. Access to UAF ANCSA Collection is generally open, but in some cases restrictions apply. Access is currently controlled and by appointment only.

Chasing the DarkFurther information on the history and implementation of the project can be found in the introduction and first chapter of Chasing the Dark: Perspectives on Place, History and Alaska Native Land Claims. Edited by Kenneth L. Pratt. 2009. E78.A3 C46 2009 ALASKA  (see STAR Archives record for excerpts and table of contents).




The program that ultimately developed in response to Section 14(h)(1) of the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act (ANCSA) had no precedent; it is, literally, a one-of-a-kind program. Thus, the framers of ANCSA had no way of knowing that the implementation of Section 14(h)(1) would result in the largest and most diverse single collection of information ever compiled about the history and cultures of Alaska Natives (Pratt 2009:xii).

This website seeks to both increase public awareness of the ANCSA 14(h)(1) program, and offer a sampling of the kinds of information it contains relative to Alaska history and the traditions of Alaska Native peoples.

Types of Records

The collection consists of three major components: Master Files, Oral History Audio and Print Records and Composite Field Maps. For a more detailed discussion of the collection components see “The ANCSA 14(h)(1) Collection” in Pratt 2009: 25-27 (Chasing the Dark). 

The vast majority of records that make up the ANCSA 14(h)(1) Collection are maintained at the BIA ANCSA Office in Anchorage; however, some records generated by AHP-CPSU researchers are housed in the Rasmuson Library Archives. There is a degree of overlap in the records held by those repositories, but each also has some that the other does not.

Master Files

  • The Master Files are grouped by Native Regional Corporation and contain investigative reports and supportive material (e.g. photographs, field notes, and detailed site maps) from site field investigations. The UAF Archives collection only contains master files from 1982 and earlier. Additional records from this timeframe and later are housed at the BIA ANCSA Office in Anchorage.

Oral History Recordings

  • The Oral History materials include approximately 2000 cassette tapes (years 1975 to 2008), tape transcripts and indexes. The majority of the interviews are with Alaska Native elders, many were recorded in a Native language. Original tapes are stored at the BIA ANCSA Office in Anchorage with a complete copy set at UAF Archives.

Field Maps

  • The Composite Field Maps, nearly 300 in number, include thousands of handwritten notations (e.g. site locations, indigenous place names, natural resource/subsistence data) relating to information contributed by Alaska Natives as well as field observations (often aerial survey) made by project researchers (e.g. archeologists). These are primarily USGS maps (“composite” = often two or more maps taped together). Most of the maps have been photo digitized.
    Annotated Field Map example, accession number 89BBN04.
    Annotated Field Map example, accession number 89BBN04.


The ANCSA 14(h)(1) collection is, for the most part, public information, however, access to some archeological and historical site information (particularly specific locational references) is restricted (according to State and Federal laws). For more information see the Collection Finding Aid - Restrictions (below).

Oral history

Oral history records are not fully processed. Some few recordings may be restricted for privacy or site location reasons. Generally the oral history is not restricted and patrons may listen to copies in the archives. However, until the collection is fully assessed, requests for access to oral history materials must be approved by Robert Drozda (UAF Archives) and/or Ken Pratt (BIA ANCSA).

To access the Detailed Finding Aid, Citation, and Usage Guides

Go to the UAF STAR Archives search tool and enter the search term "AHP"

Related materials and collections:

  • Publication: Chasing the Dark. Perspectives on Place, History and Alaska Native Land Claims (ed. K. Pratt 2009) E78.A3 C46 2009 ALASKA (see STAR Archives record for excerpts and table of contents)
  • Essay: They Talked of the Land With Respect: Interethnic Communication in the Documentation of Historical Places and Cemetery Sites (by Robert Drozda) in When Our Words Return: Writing, Hearing, and Remembering Oral Traditions of Alaska and the Yukon (ed. P. Morrow and W. Schneider 1995).
  • Nunivak Island Place Name Project (in progress, ed. Drozda and Pratt)
  • Cohen Collection (in process, Alaska & Polar Regions Archives, Accession number 92-209).
  • Alice (A.J.) Lynch Collection ([Photographs] in Alaska & Polar Regions Archives), Accession Number 98-018.
  • National Park Service CPSU finding aids, NPS-ARCC 426, 427 & 428 (at National Park Service, Fairbanks, copy available in Alaska & Polar Regions Archives, ANCSA Collection).
  • National Petroleum Reserve – Alaska (NPR-A) Site Documentation Finding Aid (at National Park Service, Fairbanks, copy available in Alaska & Polar Regions Archives).
  • Elizabeth Andrews Papers, Accession number 2000-083
  • Arundale, Wendy 1997. Allakaket-Alatna Native Place Names Collection (98-044),  ARCHIVES BOX 1 OF 1 UAF
  • Arundale, Wendy, and Eliza Jones, 1987 (?). Doyon Historic Sites Project tapes. UAF Oral History Program.
  • Arundale, Wendy 1984. Preliminary report, Doyon historic sites project-- Koyukuk area. F912.K67 A78 1984 ALASKA UAF.
  • Arundale, Wendy 1983. Doyon historic sites project report : Innoko area. F912.I49 A78 1983 SEMI-RARE UAF
  • Webb, Melody. A Woman in the Great Outdoors. University of New Mexico Press. SB481.6W43 A3 2003 ALASKA
  • E. S. (Tiger) Burch Collection, E. Andrew’s Papers (Andrews shared some of her 14(h) materials with Tiger, and they have become part of the Burch Collections, some other items of hers have been separated out to the AHP/ANCSA Collection. Other materials (particularly oral history tapes) have been duplicated and deposited at ANLA, with different accession numbers.


This page was last modified on September 24, 2018