Bones of Contention

The battle for the soul of the Graves Museum isn't over yet, and Gypsy Graves herself is back in the trenches

In other words, according to Adler, the old BCAS no longer exists. "We even had a meeting on this," he says. The BCAS "is not even the same group. They have strangers and other people. This is kind of a political thing."

Nonsense, says BCAS lawyer Norliza Batts. "These are the same people. The people in power there are simply being vindictive, and they have a lot of greed." Batts, who says she's "close" to filing a lawsuit against the museum's board of directors on behalf of the BCAS, claims that Adler had an inherent conflict of interest when he recommended changing the museum's bylaws. "Our position is that the BCAS never would have given up anything or never would have given up any rights to artifacts, collections, or a seat on the board if they'd had an attorney who was representing their interests and their interests alone," she says. "In effect Karl Adler was working both sides of the fence."

The BCAS, she says, wants a seat on the board, access to its artifacts, and a say in defining the museum's mission. Gypsy Graves herself will not be content with a symbolic role in this fight. Yes, the battle itself will concern bylaws, organizational charts, and other corporate-law minutiae. But the septuagenarian archaeologist knows what's really at stake here.

Gypsy Graves wants to return to the institution that has her name on it
Joshua Prezant
Gypsy Graves wants to return to the institution that has her name on it

"We are going to take the museum back," she declares, "and run it the way it should be."

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