Demolition of Section 14

Demolition of Section 14

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City of Palm Springs Resolution No. 6781


City of Palm Springs Resolution No. 6781 requests cooperation with the Bureau of Indian Affairs and the Association of Conservators and Guardians to clear lots on Indian-owned land in Section 14 for speedy re-development, frequently without informing all affected parties, including Indian land owners and Section 14's low-income residents. The subsequent demolition of Section 14 is later described in a California Department of Justice report as “a city engineered holocaust.”


The book Golden Checkerboard is published, purportedly telling the story of Indian land development in Palm Springs. It describes Superior Court Judge Hilton McCabe as a "little white father," lauding the Judge and conservator/executor of Indian estates as being responsible for resolving legal hurdles that had prevented the development of reservation lands. The book's author Ed Ainsworth is later sued by tribal members for defamation of character.


The Department of the Interior begins a probe of the guardianship-conservatorship program. At the same time, journalist George Ringwald of the Press-Enterprise newspaper begins an independent investigation.


Following federal and state investigations into charges of "questionable conduct," the fraudulent conservatorship program, a program that swallowed large portions of Indian estates by placing them into the hands of lawyers, judges, and business owners, is ended.

George Ringwald's investigative reporting on the guardianship-conservatorship program earns the Press-Enterprise a Pulitzer Prize for Meritorious Service.