Statement on Land Acknowledgement

Los Angeles County Land Acknowledgement

What is a land acknowledgement?
The Natural History Museums of Los Angeles County strongly believe that a land acknowledgement is the result of intentional relationship-building with the thriving and vibrant Native American communities in the Southern California area. We have a steadfast commitment to both our relationship with descendant communities and the work required to bring their voices forward to combat invisibility and erasure within our public engagement at our family of museums. A Land Acknowledgment is a formal statement that respects and recognizes Native Americans as the original stewards of the land our Museums stand on today. The acknowledgement, paired with action and relationship building, addresses invisibility, combats erasure, and raises critical consciousness of the relationship between Native Americans and their traditional territories.

On November 1, 2022, Los Angeles County adopted a formal land acknowledgment set to go into effect as of December 1, 2022. The following statement will be used at the Natural History Museums of Los Angeles County’s three sites and adapted for use at NHMLAC events. This is part of NHMLAC’s ongoing work to build relationships and conduct programs with our partners in Native American communities.

The County of Los Angeles recognizes that we occupy land originally and still inhabited and cared for by the Tongva, Tataviam, Serrano, Kizh, and Chumash Peoples. We honor and pay respect to their elders and descendants─past, present, and emerging─as they continue their stewardship of these lands and waters. We acknowledge that settler colonization resulted in land seizure, disease, subjugation, slavery, relocation, broken promises, genocide, and multigenerational trauma. This acknowledgment demonstrates our responsibility and commitment to truth, healing, and reconciliation and to elevating the stories, culture, and community of the original inhabitants of Los Angeles County. We are grateful to have the opportunity to live and work on these ancestral lands. We are dedicated to growing and sustaining relationships with Native peoples and local tribal governments, including (in no particular order) the:

  • Fernandeño Tataviam Band of Mission Indians
  • Gabrielino Tongva Indians of California Tribal Council
  • Gabrieleno/Tongva San Gabriel Band of Mission Indians
  • Gabrieleño Band of Mission Indians – Kizh Nation
  • San Manuel Band of Mission Indians
  • San Fernando Band of Mission Indians