The Muscogee Creek Nation of Oklahoma filed a lawsuit on Wednesday to try to stop the $246 million expansion of the casino the Poarch Creek Indians operate in Wetumpka, which the Muscogee Creeks believe is being built on sacred land.
The Muscogee Creeks, who filed the lawsuit in federal court in Montgomery, claim the Poarch Creeks excavated 57 sets of human remains and reburied those in April of this year to develop the 20-story hotel and casino.
The Muscogee Creeks know the site of the casino as Hickory Ground, where their ancestors lived and where there is a ceremonial ground, a tribal burial ground and individual graves. They believe the sacred land is being desecrated.
The site was listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the Muscogee Creeks say, because it was the last capital of the Creek Nation before they were forced into Indian Territory, which is now known as Oklahoma.
A Poarch Creek tribal official, in an email to the Montgomery Advertiser, wrote that the tribe would have a response once they are able to review the lawsuit.
(Continue to check back here for updates to this report.)
– posted by Sebastian Kitchen