Thank you for calling the attention of the American public to the plight of "Sue" the Tyrannosaurus rex in your Oct. 2 article "Monstrous Bones of Contention." This is a very complicated situation that needs some clarification. The major point to be clarified is that Sue was found on the private deeded property of Maurice Williams.
The article states that "The ranchers who allowed the excavations are tribal members and cannot stake full claim to the property they use." Reservations in South Dakota contain a complicated patchwork of ownership. Much private deeded property is contained within the borders of this reservation. Williams purchased the land upon which Sue was found in the 1960s. He placed the title in trust in 1969. The trust patent, which clarifies Williams' rights, states: "The United States of America . . . will hold the land . . . for the period of 25 years, in trust for the sole use and benefit of the said Indian" (it comes out of trust in 1994).