Opportunity And Opposition In Pamunkey Tribe’s Casino Proposal


Chief Robert Gray stands on the pier in front of the tribe’s now defunct shad fish hatchery. There are no longer enough shad to continue the hatchery that once helped boost the population. (Credit: Pamela D’Angelo)

Three years ago the Pamunkey Indian Tribe gained federal recognition.

Now the tribe is considering opening a casino as a step toward financial independence.

But the idea is not without controversy as Pamela D’Angelo reports.

***Editor’s Note: An earlier version of this story incorrectly attributed the historic document read by Chief Gray to his tribe. In fact, it was from a speech by  the leader of the Onondaga tribe, who spoke on behalf of six nations at the 1744 treaty of Lancaster in Pennsylvania. The Pamunkey were not signatories nor attended this treaty negotiation.

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