Indian proclamation claiming rights to Alcatraz

Date: 11/10/1969
Reference Number:
KPIX 100633
16mm newsfilm
KPIX news report from Alcatraz on 10th November 1969, where a group of American Indians have just spent a night staking their claim to ownership of the island. They are interviewed and a young man describes his experience of touring the derelict prison facility, declaring: ?This is a monument of a sick society. It?s really sick. People have to be sick to put up something like this!? Another agrees with him, continuing: ?We?re going to change it into its opposite ? a monument to Indian people.? There are views of reporters and federal authorities walking around the island and then gathering to witness Richard Oakes reading a proclamation to federal official Mr Hammon: ?We the Native Americans reclaim this land known as Alcatraz Island in the name of all American Indians by right of discovery. We wish to be fair and honorable in our dealings with the Caucasian inhabitants of this land and hereby offer the following treaty. We will purchase said Alcatraz Island for $24 and glass beads and red cloth, a precedent set by the white man?s purchase of a similar island about 300 years ago.? After listening to Oakes, Hammon offers everyone a lift back to the mainland, which they accept.
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