The Omaha Tribe and the Winnebago Tribe now have certified Tribal Historic Preservation Offices (THPOs). Because Indian nations are their own sovereign governments, they have both the right and the responsibility to identify and preserve historic places on their traditional lands. Working with the Nebraska State Historical Society and the Nebraska Commission on Indian Affairs, the Omaha and Winnebago have collaborated with the other Nebraska-based tribes on a multi-year project to identify needs and issues in preserving their cultures.  By qualifying as Tribal Historic Preservation Offices (THPOs), the Omaha and Winnebago join the Ponca Tribe of Nebraska and the Santee Sioux Tribe in receiving authority from the National Park Service to conduct certain federal historic preservation programs.

Calvin R. Harlan is the new Tribal Historic Preservation Officer for the Omaha Tribe. Emily DeLeon will serve as THPO for the Winnebago Tribe. Duties under the National Historic Preservation Act they may undertake include nominating properties to the National Register of Historic Places, reviewing federal projects on tribal lands, surveying significant historic, archeological, and cultural properties, and planning for preservation of important sites. Tribes will also qualify for historic preservation grants with the new designation.

For more information about historic preservation activities in the state, contact Bob Puschendorf, State Historic Preservation Office, Nebraska State Historical Society at 402-471-4769 or email