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Press Release...99-168
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Ancient Chamori Skulls in France?
The Hawaii-based group, Bring Our Ancestors Home Foundation recently issued an Internet call-out to our researchers in Europe for information and documentation on Antoine-Alfred Marche and the collection of human skulls and sacred artifacts taken from Saipan and the Mariana Islands.

According to foundation president, Norbert Perez, "We received information from a good friend of the foundation, Dr. Lawrence Cunningham of the R.F.Taitano-MARC Library (UOG) that ancestral skulls and artifacts were taken from Saipan by Antoine-Alfred Marche in 1889 and may be existent somewhere in a France Museum".

"The foundation has issued a worldwide call-out for information and should be receiving feedback in a few days." Perez stated. The idea of finding ancestral skulls in the Saipan caves brings a new and interesting twist to our documented history."


The source on the skulls is as follows:

Marche, Antoine-Alfred.  The Mariana Islands.  [1889].  Translated by
Sylvia E. Cheng.  Edited by Robert D. Craig.  Mangilao:  Micronesian Area
Research Center:  University of Guam, 1982.

Skeleton Collecting
Skeletons in cave  in layers more than a meter deep - all useless - not
buried
also in holes and crevices in the mountains - he found good skulls
and in one small cave he found buried skeletons in sufficient condition to
permit further studies of this race."
page 13

Found three complete skulls, some femurs, and two barbed spear heads of
human bone on the slopes of Marpi in a cave

In Inagan Point caves he found wood from what might have been a plain
coffin.  He found 8 skulls in a single line.

He got 10 skulls that day and a bad attack of fever.  [LJC - ooh oooha
the taotaomo'na strike back]
All together he took 35 skulls of ancient inhabitants and Carolinians from
Saipan plus some ethnographic objects,
600 insects, reptiles, fish and 70 species of plants with seeds, flowers,
and fruit.
page 15

more on skulls
page 22
and page 30

most of these are from Mariana Islands other than Guam, but that is also
true of the Bishop Museum Collection.

Prepared by:
Lynn Cruz
Communications Secretary

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