Dear Editor,

Households around New Jersey recently celebrated Thanksgiving, but the story was missing one critical part: The Native Americans.

The Lenape tribe (NJ’s native people) have no federally-recognized tribal reservation within their historic national borders (NJ and parts of NY, PA, DE). The Lenape who survived colonial genocide were almost entirely forcibly relocated to Oklahoma, Wisconsin, and the Canadian province of Ontario.

There are a number of small tribal groupings existing in New Jersey with state-only recognition, but these very small groups have no reservations and must solicit donations to conduct basic organizational activities.

Lands must be set aside, trust funds created, and housing developments must be built by the State of New Jersey, to enable the relocation of the Lenape people back to their lands in New Jersey. The entire Lenape population is only 16,000 so this would be very possible to do.


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Eric Hafner
Toms River, NJ

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Avatar of Allan Dean

Allan Dean

Allan Dean is editor, publisher, and founder of the Atlantic Highlands Herald. Published since 1999 and selected in 2000 by the Borough of Atlantic Highlands as one of their official newspapers, making...