UC Berkeley Professor Exhumed Hundreds of Native Americans

Almost thirty years after federally sponsored universities were required to report and return any human remains believed to be Native American, the University of California Berkeley’s museum of anthropology still contains the remains of more than 9,000 Indigenous individuals. Even more incriminating, a May 2022 study revealed that a veteran anthropology professor’s collection contained the grave-excavated bones of at least 95 Native People.

Tim White was a member of the university’s repatriation committee for many years. With the most recent discovery, the university asserts that he no longer has that role. While supporters point out the “serious moral, ethical, and maybe legal infraction,” the administration has issued an apology for its inadequate management. The university stated that the campus favored certain types of scientific and intellectual evidence over tribal interests and evidence offered by tribes. Yet, White—who retired last spring— isn’t apologizing. Instead, he has accused the university of “creating false accusations.”