By the President of the United States of America
The Yukon-Charley National Monument, an area in east-central Alaska, includes a combination of historic and scientific features of great significance. The Upper Yukon River basin contains historic remains of early mining activity, and includes outstanding paleontological resources and ecologically diverse natural resources, offering many opportunities for scientific and historic study and research.
The area provides breeding habitat for the endangered peregrine falcon, and may produce about one-fourth of the known individuals of the anatum peregrine subspecies in its northern habitat. Wildlife also include isolated wild populations of Dall sheep, moose, bear, wolf, and other large mammals. Nearly 200 species of birds, including 20 different raptors, are present in the area.
Geological and paleontological features within the area are exceptional, including a nearly unbroken visible series of rock strata representing a range in geologic time from pre-Cambrian to Recent. The oldest exposures contain fossils estimated to be 700 million years old, including the earliest forms of animal life. A large array of Ice Age fossils occurs in the area.
Within the area is the Charley River basin, parts of which were unglaciated, preserving relict Pleistocene plant communities. The Charley River is considered to be one of the cleanest and clearest of the major rivers in Alaska, and thereby offers excellent opportunities for scientific studies. In the upper Charley River basin, artifacts occur dating back possibly 11,000 years, attesting to the presence of ancient hunters who were the ancestors of the modern Athapascan people.
The land withdrawn and reserved by this Proclamation for the protection of the historical, archeological, biological, geological and other phenomena enumerated above supports now, as it has in the past, the unique subsistence culture of the local residents. The continued existence of this culture, which depends on subsistence hunting, and its availability for study, enhance the historic and scientific values of the natural objects protected herein because of the ongoing interaction of the subsistence culture with those objects. Accordingly, the opportunity for the local residents to engage in subsistence hunting is a value to be protected and will continue under the administration of the monument.
Section 2 of the Act of June 8, 1906 (34 Stat. 225, 16 U.S.C. 431), authorizes the President, in his discretion, to declare by public proclamation historic landmarks, historic and prehistoric structures, and other objects of historic or scientific interest that are situated upon the lands owned or controlled by the Government of the United States to be national monuments, and to reserve as part thereof parcels of land, the limits of which in all cases shall be confined to the smallest area compatible with the proper care and management of the objects to be protected.
Now, THEREFORE, I, JIMMY CARTER, President of the United States of America, by the authority vested in me by Section 2 of the Act of June 8, 1906 (34 Stat. 225, 16 U.S.C. 431), do proclaim that there are hereby set apart and reserved as the Yukon-Charley National Monument all lands, including submerged lands, and waters owned or controlled by the United States within the boundaries of the area depicted as the Yukon-Charley National Monument on the map numbered YUCH-90,009 attached to and forming a part of this Proclamation. The area reserved consists of approximately 1,720,000 acres, and is the smallest area compatible with the proper care and management of the objects to be protected. Lands, including submerged lands, and waters within these boundaries not owned by the United States shall be reserved as a part of the monument upon acquisition of title thereto by the United States.
All lands, including submerged lands, and all waters within the boundaries of this monument are hereby appropriated and withdrawn from entry, location, selection, sale or other disposition under the public land laws, other than exchange. There is also reserved all water necessary to the proper care and management of those objects protected by this monument and for the proper administration of the monument in accordance with applicable laws.
The establishment of this monument is subject to valid existing rights, including, but not limited to, valid selections under the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act, as amended (43 U.S.C. 1601 et seq.), and under or confirmed in the Alaska Statehood Act (48 U.S.C. Note preceding Section 21 ).
Nothing in this Proclamation shall be deemed to revoke any existing withdrawal, reservation or appropriation, including any withdrawal under Section 17 (d) (1) of the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act (43 U.S.C. 1616(d) (1)); however, the national monument shall be the dominant reservation. Nothing in this Proclamation is intended to modify or revoke the terms of the Memorandum of Understanding dated September 1, 1972, entered into between the State of Alaska and the United States as part of the negotiated settlement of Alaska v. Morton, Civil No. A-48-72 (D. Alaska, Complaint filed April 10, 1972).
The Secretary of the Interior shall promulgate such regulations as are appropriate, including regulation of the opportunity to engage in a subsistence lifestyle by local residents. The Secretary may close the national monument, or any portion thereof, to subsistence uses of a particular fish, wildlife or plant population if necessary for reasons of public safety, administration, or to ensure the natural stability or continued viability of such population.
Warning is hereby given to all unauthorized persons not to appropriate, injure, destroy or remove any feature of this monument and not to locate or settle upon any of the lands thereof.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this 1st day of December, in the year of our Lord nineteen hundred and seventy-eight, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and third.
[Filed with the Office of the Federal Register, 3:08 p.m., December 1, 1978]