When 89-year-old woman dies, so will Navajo presence at Wupatki

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When 89-year-old woman dies, so will Navajo presence at Wupatki

Anthony Davis, left, and Helen Peshlakai Davis walk past a stone home where a family member is buried at Wupatki National Monument in northern Arizona. The National Park Service, which manages the monument, and the Peshlakai family are at odds over the family’s pursuit of residency in the vast expanse of grasslands and pueblo ruins.
Stella Peshlakai speaks about her family history at the Wupatki National Monument. The Peshlakai descendants are fighting to gain residency rights on land their ancestors settled before the creation of the monument.
Navajo elder Stella Peshlakai Smith, 89, is the sole resident at Wupatki National Monument in northern Arizona. Decades before an expanse of grassland and pueblo ruins in northern Arizona was declared a national monument, it was home to hundreds of Navajos who lived amid the sandstone rocks, canyons and scrub brush. As they left the land over the years, Peshlakai became the last remaining tenant.

When 89-year-old woman dies, so will Navajo presence at Wupatki

Anthony Davis, left, and Helen Peshlakai Davis walk past a stone home where a family member is buried at Wupatki National Monument in northern Arizona. The National Park Service, which manages the monument, and the Peshlakai family are at odds over the family’s pursuit of residency in the vast expanse of grasslands and pueblo ruins.
Stella Peshlakai speaks about her family history at the Wupatki National Monument. The Peshlakai descendants are fighting to gain residency rights on land their ancestors settled before the creation of the monument.
Navajo elder Stella Peshlakai Smith, 89, is the sole resident at Wupatki National Monument in northern Arizona. Decades before an expanse of grassland and pueblo ruins in northern Arizona was declared a national monument, it was home to hundreds of Navajos who lived amid the sandstone rocks, canyons and scrub brush. As they left the land over the years, Peshlakai became the last remaining tenant.
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