Indigenous Peoples of Wyoming
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Learn about the tribes and bands, agencies, records and reservations of the indigenous people of Wyoming.
To learn how to get started with Native American research, find research facilities, and Native American websites click here.
Wyoming is a Delaware word meaning mountains and valleys alternating.
Tribes and Bands of Wyoming[edit | edit source]
Agencies of the Bureau of Indian Affairs[edit | edit source]
Agencies and subagencies were created as administrative offices of the Bureau of Indian Affairs and its predecessors. Their purpose was (and is) to manage Indian affairs with the tribes, to enforce policies, and to assist in maintaining the peace. The names and location of these agencies may have changed, but their purpose remained basically the same. Many of the records of genealogical value were created by these offices.
The following list of agencies that have operated or now exist in Wyoming has been compiled from Hill's Office of Indian Affairs..., Hill's Guide to Records in the National Archives Relating to American Indians, and others.
- Fort Bridger Agency
- Red Cloud Agency
- Shoshone Agency
- Shoshone and Bannock Agency
- Upper Platte Agency
- Wind River Agency, Ft. Washakie, WY, 82514
Records[edit | edit source]
The majority of records of individuals were those created by the agencies. Some records may be available to tribal members through the tribal headquarters.They were (and are) the local office of the Bureau of Indian Affairs, and were charged with maintaining records of the activities of those under their responsibility. Among these records are:
- Allotment records
- Annuity rolls
- Census records
- Health records
- School census and records
- Vital records
Allotment Records[edit | edit source]
Allotted Tribes of Wyoming
Indian Schools[edit | edit source]
The Office of Indian Affairs (now the Bureau of Indian Affairs) established a network of schools throughout the United States, beginning with Carlisle Indian School, established in 1879. Some of these schools were day schools, usually focusing on children of a single tribe or reservation. Some were boarding schools that served children from a number of tribes and reservations.
In addition, other groups such as various church denominations established schools specifically focusing on Native American children. (read more...)
Family History Library[edit | edit source]
The Family History Library has copies of the Wind River Agency files of Wyoming for the years 1881 to 1953. These are detailed records kept by the Bureau of Indian Affairs. The original records are at the National Archives Rocky Mountain Region (Denver). Other Native American records are listed in the subject section of the FamilySearch Catalog under the names of the tribes, such as SHOSHONI INDIANS.
- Wyoming Superintendency 13 films Family History Library 1st film 1549631
See also the Family History catalog Wyoming Native Races for over 600 titles
Reservations[edit | edit source]
There is only one federally-recognized reservation in Wyoming. Most of the records kept by the federal government about the tribes will be found in the appropriate agency.
For a current reservation map - Wyoming - Indian Reservations - The National Atlas of the United States of America. Federal Lands and Indian Reservations. by the U.S. Department of Interior and U.S. Geological Survey.
Further information about Indian reservations in the United States can be found in the National Atlas of the United States of America, the Omni Gazetteer of the United States of America, and other sources. Other reservations may have historically been associated with the state or are not currently recognized by the federal government.
- Wind River Reservation -- located in west-central Wyoming; Tribes: Shoshoni and Arapaho
For Further Reading[edit | edit source]
See also American Indian For Further Reading.
- Wyoming_History Wiki page for a calendar of events
- Wyoming_Military Recordsfor Wiki page list of forts
- Morgan, Dale L. Shoshonean Peoples and the Overland Trails: Frontiers of the Utah Superintendency of Indian Affairs, 1849-1869, ed. Richard L. Saunders. Logan: Utah State Univ. Press, 2007.
References[edit | edit source]
- Hodge, Frederick Webb. Handbook of American Indians North of Mexico. Washington D.C.:Smithsonian Institution, Bureau of American Ethnology, Bulletin #30 1907. Available online.
- Swanton John R. The Indian Tribes of North America. Smithsonian Institution, Bureau of American Ethnology, Bulletin #145 Available online.
- Hill, Edward E. The Office of Indian Affairs, 1824-1880: Historical Sketches, Clearwater Publishing Co., Inc. 1974. (Family History Library book 970.1 H551o.)
- Hill, Edward E. (comp.). Guide to Records in the National Archives of the United States Relating to American Indians. Washington DC: National Archives and Records Service, General Services Administration, 1981. (FHL book 970.1 H551g.)
- National Atlas of the United States of America -- Federal Lands and Indian Reservations Available online.
- Isaacs. Katherine M., editor. Omni Gazetteer of the United States of America. U.S. Data Sourcebook, Volume 11 Appendices, Bureau of Indian Affairs List of American Indian Reservations, Appendix E, Indian Reservations. Omnigraphics, Inc., 1991.