Maine Indian scalps offered on Craigslist

Posted Sept. 03, 2009, at 10:14 a.m.

PORTLAND, Maine — The FBI is investigating posts selling “Maine Indian scalps” to “white people only” after the leader of the Penobscot Indian Nation reported the matter to state and federal officials.

The postings discussed six scalps and related artifacts obtained by bounty hunters in the 1700s and came from a private family collection.

The posts, no longer accessible, included a Maine cell phone number and the name, “Whitely Bradford.” The phone was not accepting calls.

Federal investigators and Penobscot leaders have proceeded under the assumption that the scalps are legitimate. Penobscot Chief Kirk Francis says it’s a hard time for the tribe to look back on, and to be reminded of it so blatantly — and then see someone profit from it — doesn’t sit well.