City of Trinidad
TRINIDAD – The City of Trinidad has a duty to protect the Tsurai Village as well as the Trinidad Memorial Lighthouse.
Moving the lighthouse to more stable ground on site will protect the village site and cultural resources below by removing the immediate threat of the Memorial Lighthouse sliding down on top of the village, and will enhance public access to the Axel Lindgren Memorial Trail and Old Home Beach.
In spring 2017 geologic studies warned that the Trinidad Memorial Lighthouse was in serious danger of sliding over the bluff if not moved before the next rainy season.
Out of respect and concern for the cultural and historic significance of the village site, the Trinidad Civic Club proactively opened a dialogue with the Yurok Tribe and the Cher-ae Heights Indian Community of the Trinidad Rancheria (Trinidad Rancheria) to discuss the possibilities for relocation of the Memorial Lighthouse.
With no feasible alternative site identified in the short time available, and the rainy season underway, the Civic Club applied for and was granted an emergency permit to move the Lighthouse over on the Civic Club property.
The active slide next to the lighthouse is part of the natural geology of our area, and one of many such slides along this beautiful coastline.
The geology work commissioned by the City has been clear that this slide is a natural feature that is making its way up the hill from below, and is not driven by the weight of the Lighthouse or other improvements on the site.
There is no basis in fact for the argument that previous Trinidad Civic Club projects have caused this active slide.
The statements from the Yurok Tribe and the Trinidad Rancheria highlight the differences between the local American Indian people (Yurok and Yurok descendants) who trace their families and ancestors to the Tsurai Village.
Those differences are ultimately between the governments of the Trinidad Rancheria and the Yurok Tribe, not between the City of Trinidad and the Yurok Tribal government.
It is the City of Trinidad’s desire to bring all of the stakeholders in this matter together to work cooperatively in a meaningful and respectful way to protect and preserve the village of Tsurai and the Trinidad Memorial Lighthouse.