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Legislative Branch Appropriations

Sen. Byron L. Dorgan

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Mr. President, I rise to thank the managers of this bill for including $1.25 million for the Congressional Cemetery in the fiscal year 2002 legislative branch appropriations bill. I particularly want to recognize the good work of Chairman Durbin and Carrie Apostolou of his staff for their efforts to include funding for repairs and upgrades to the Congressional Cemetery. I also appreciate the assistance I have received from the Architect of the Capitol and the Congressional Cemetery Association as I have worked with my colleagues to secure this funding.

Earlier this year, I spoke on the floor of the Senate about the need for some funding to make some repairs to the Congressional Cemetery east of Capitol Hill. The cemetery has fallen into some disrepair over the years and it is in some ways a rather forlorn place. When I spoke on this issue last April, I asked my colleagues to find the resources to restore dignity to our Congressional Cemetery. I am very pleased that this bill contributes to this effort.

My interest in this funding began after seeing a Library of Congress exhibit on the Congressional Cemetery. In particular, I became interested in learning more about the Native Americans who are buried in that cemetery and through research, I came across the name of Scarlet Crow. Scarlet Crow, a member of the Wahpeton-Sisseton Sioux Tribe, died in Washington, DC, under mysterious circumstances in 1867, and was buried in the Congressional Cemetery.

So I visited the cemetery last spring to locate his tombstone. This visit prompted me to ask my colleagues on the Senate Appropriations Committee for this funding, and I am very pleased with their response.

It is my hope that this funding will honor the memory of Scarlet Crow by restoring dignity to his final resting place. This funding is a tribute to this dedicated Native American, Scarlet Crow, whose life came to such a tragic and untimely end in our Nation's Capital.