Nevada City, Calif. April 30, 2019 – The California Heritage: Indigenous Research Project (CHIRP)’s Board Chairman Niel Locke announced that CHIRP has successfully acquired property on Champion Mine Road. CHIRP is a tribally-guided non-profit organization with the mission to preserve, protect and perpetuate Nisenan Culture.

“This is an important down payment toward recognition of the original people of this area, as well as reparations – literally returning to the Nisenan land that was seized during the Gold Rush,” Locke explained.

“This project, creating the Nisenan Cultural Reclamation Corridor and Wild Space Preserve, has been years in development. What a historic moment,” notes CHIRP Executive Director Shelly Covert. “CHIRP looks forward to working with the Tribe and the larger community to host the development of the planned trail and other activities on this beautiful property.”

“This project began in 2013 as part of the Deer Creek Tribute Trail in Nevada City. The Sierra Fund worked with the City of Nevada City to receive funding for this project from the California Resources Agency, River Parkways program,” states Sierra Fund CEO Elizabeth “Izzy” Martin. “We are thrilled that the project culminates in returning this land to the original people of the area.”

Nevada City Rancheria Foothills Nisenan Tribal Vice-Chair Virginia Covert notes that “This gives our people an opportunity to steward this land, re-engage in cultural practices, and create habitat for the animals of this beautiful creek and woodland property.”

The public is invited to join CHIRP, Hospitality House and The Sierra Fund in the first annual clean-up of the property to be held on Thursday, May 30. You can assist in the success of this project through either hands-on clean up support or by making a tax-deductible donation that will go toward future land needs.

To make a contribution, go to For more information on how you can participate in this activity, contact CHIRP at