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Nez Perce
Expedition Culture Geography People Maps Nature
  Self Determination and Sovereignty
Sovereignty: Underlying Legal Principles
Fisheries Resources Management
Natural Resources Management
Cultural Resource Program
Contemporary Artists: Continuities
Contemporary Artists: Fusions
Language Program and Some Lessons
Horse Program
Acknowledgements and Cultural Property
Cultural Property Rights Agreement

  Native American
  Oral Traditions along the Clearwater and Snake Rivers
Coyote and the Swallowing Monster
Territory of the Nimíipuu
Seasonal Round: Winter into Summer
Seasonal Round: Summer into Winter
Horse in Nimíipuu Culture
Growing Up Nimíipuu: Family and Community Life
Growing Up Nimíipuu: Headmen and Leadership
To Sing and Dance: In the Past
To Sing and Dance: In the Present
Spiritual Life
Traditional Clothing Styles and Appearance
Céexstem: Dice Game

  Smallpox and Disease
Missionaries and Christianity
Fur Trade
Treaties and the Dawes Act
Treaty of 1855
Treaty of 1863
Conflict of 1877

Nimíipuu - Lewis and Clark Rediscovery Lifelong Learning Online Project

Attachment A – Cultural Property Rights Agreement

11 July 2001

Objective: The objective of this agreement is to safeguard and protect the cultural property of the Nimíipuu (Nez Perce). Cultural property is defined as knowledge and information concerning ideas, practices, objects, landscape, or any other expressed view associated with the culture of the Nimíipuupeople. As cultural property information is obtained for this project, we seek to protect it from uses other than those designated by the Nimíipuu, and specifically approved by the Nez Perce Tribal Executive Committee and its designated agencies.


  1. "Patents, copyrights, and trademark are mechanisms designed to protect an inventor, creator, or designer’s individual creations or novel company investments. Inventions, defined by the World Intellectual Property Organization as new ideas that solve a particular problem in a technical field, are covered by patents, which protect the owner of the patent from having his product copied by competitors. Copyrights protect literary, scientific, and artistic works, as well as computer software. Copyrights do not protect ideas as such; rather they protect the specific way in which the author has chosen to express the idea. Trademark, another form of intellectual property protection, distinguish the products of one firm from those of other firms in a related field. According to Greaves ("Tribal Rights," in Valuing Local Knowledge, Island Press, 1996), such legal measures fall far short of protecting the intellectual property rights and biological resources of indigenous peoples. Indigenous or local knowledge is unique to a given culture or society, and it contrasts with knowledge generated, say, within universities or other research institutions; it is a communal inheritance, often specific to a particular locality or way of life. The use of traditional knowledge is governed by community regulation. It has no identifiable author and is already in the public domain, and therefore cannot be protected under current copyright and patent laws." (Ian McIntosh, "Intellectual Property Responsibilities," Cultural Survival, Winter 2001: 4)

    Patents, copyrights and trademarks evolved out of Euro-American legal consideration to protect individual property defined in terms of a commodity. Such legal safeguards were and are not fundamentally designed to protect the collective cultural and intellectual property rights of indigenous peoples.

  2. Recognizing the sovereign status of the Nez Perce Tribe, the tribe has the right to monitor and regulate how Nimíipuu cultural property is used and shared publically. This right is exercised through its Nez Perce Tribal Executive Committee (NPTEC) and any other body it so designates.
  3. The agreement is entered into by the principal investigator (and any research assistants under his supervision) in the Nimíipuu - Lewis and Clark Rediscovery Life-Long Learning Online Internet Project and by the Nez Perce Tribe (as approved by NPTEC on June 12, 2001), and is applicable and binding between these two parties.


  1. Utilize a thorough review process to access, adjust, and approve the cultural property and information obtained for this project by the principal investigator, accessing its accuracy, authenticity, and appropriateness for public sharing and dissemination. The review process would involve each interviewee involved in the project, the Office of Cultural Resources, the Internet Project Committee, and, finally, NPTEC. No cultural property would be publicly disseminated as part of this project without prior approval of the above said individuals, committees, and agencies.
  2. Copies of all cultural property and informational materials obtained for this project (e.g., still photos, video and audio tapes, and print materials of interviews and imaging) by the principal investigator, whether used in the final Internet modules or as supplemental, non-used research materials to the modules, would remain with the tribe and housed in the Office of Cultural Resources. Such materials are considered the cultural property of the Nez Perce Tribe, to be used as deemed appropriate by the tribe and its agencies.
  3. No additional or future uses (e.g., print or web publication) of any and all cultural property and informational materials obtained for this project by the principal investigator would be permitted without the prior approval of NPTEC.
  4. The Nimíipuu have the continued right to monitor and adjust the content of the Nimíipuu - Lewis and Clark Rediscovery Life-Long Learning Online module. If any adjustments are requested, they would be coordinated and facilitated through the principal investigator or through an internet technician working on the Lewis and Clark Rediscovery Life-Long Learning Online Project. The monitoring shall begin upon final NPTEC approval of the project and shall continue for up to two years following the date of the project’s inception.
  5. All web-based materials approved by the NPTEC for use on the Lewis and Clark Rediscovery Life-Long Learning Online site will carry the appropriate tribal copyright © sign, identifying each web-based page as copyrighted to the Nez Perce Tribe.

Signature of Principle Investigator:

__Rodney Frey_______________

Date: __23 July 2001_______________


Witnessed by Nez Perce Cultural Resources Official:

__Vera J. Sonneck___________

Date: __July 23, 2001______________