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At 8:08: Many in Humboldt this week will be celebrating a remarkable milestone as the sacred and historic Tuluwat Island nears its official transfer back to the Wiyot Tribe from the City of Eureka.

A meeting and ceremony at the Adorni Center will honor the transfer on Monday from 10 a.m. to noon.

The Wiyot people have lived in the Humboldt Bay area for thousands of years and Tuluwat has immense significance. The island has hosted ancient villages, spiritual ceremonies, and unfortunately a land-theft and massacre in 1860 which saw the brutal murder of Wiyot men, women, and children while they slept. “After 1860 there was an estimated population of 200 Wiyot people left,” reads a document on the Wiyot Tribe’s website. “By 1910 less than 100 full-blooded Wiyot people were living in Wiyot territory… However, the Wiyot refused to disappear, returning to their ancestral lands and learning to walk in both the world of ancient ways and of imposed European values.”

Since 1860 the Wiyot say Tuluwat Island has been diked, drained, disturbed, and contaminated. Bits and pieces of the land have swapped ownership over the years. Eureka bought most of it in the 1950s. It was designated a National Historic Landmark in 1964. The tribe bought a small amount of it in 2000 and was given another portion in 2004. Finally and officially this year, most of the island on the southwestern side of the Samoa bridge will once again be Wiyot land.

An Interior Department vet agreed with Thadeus Greenson at The Journal: For a city to give back this much land to a Native American tribe is a national first.

The Wiyot historically have danced on the island during their World Renewal Ceremony to heal discord and bring well being to all people. It appears they’re set to hold the ceremony on the island next year. They’ll also reportedly remove invasive Spartina grass from the island and make other environmental improvements.

Also worth noting is one of billionaire Rob Arkley’s most publicized failures in recent memory. He tried, and failed, to prevent Eureka from returning Tuluwat to what he called quote “the Natives.” At the time he told media he wanted to ensure the public could continue to access it. His efforts to purchase the island and prevent the transfer have clearly proven unsuccessful.

So, the tribe will reclaim Tuluwat after over a century and a half of obstacles such as a brutal massacre, land abuse, and a determined billionaire. It’s a historic return of a special spiritual home.

The audio version of this contains additional commentary.

Also in the new episode:

PG&E answers shutoff questions about King Salmon plant and preparation

Marci Kitchen could be released by May 2021

No imposters hijacking the Humboldt cannabis brand

Mad River Brewing is set to be purchased by the Yurok Tribe

And so much more. Plus an event guide and the attraction of the week.

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Humboldt Last Week episode 147 partners: Northcoast Horticulture Supply, Ferndale Music Company, Bongo Boy Studio, Trinidad Vacation Rental, North Coast Journal, Photography by Shi

Humboldt Last Week is available at humboldtlastweek.com, kymkemp.com,  northcoastjournal.com, and 99.1 FM Mondays