Indigenous Peoples of the United States Reservations

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Background[edit | edit source]

A reservation is a land area governed by an American Indian tribe rather than by a state, or the United States federal government. Reservations were set aside by the United States or individual states (such as New York) for use as American Indian homelands. Some reservations are for one tribe or band, and some reservations are shared by two or more tribes. There are 310 reservations in the United States and about 550 recognized tribes, so not every tribe has its own separate reservation. A few tribes, bands, or clans live on more than one reservation. The largest is the Navajo Nation Reservation consisting of a significant portion of several large counties in Arizona, New Mexico, and Utah. Some reservations are on tiny pieces of land not much more than a few acres surrounded by large urban areas, for example, the Las Vegas Reservation in Las Vegas, Nevada. Reservations are distributed unevenly in the United States with the bulk of them in the mountain-west states, Wisconsin, Minnesota, the Dakotas, and Oklahoma. Reservation lands make up 2.3 percent of the total land area of the United States.[1]

The pueblos of New Mexico, the colonies of Nevada and the rancherias of California are not ordinarily referred to as "reservations," for practical purposes that is what they are and they are included in the count of reservations.

Boundary changes. The boundaries of reservations have changed over time. Usually, that means the reservations have been reduced in size. Sometimes, especially during the policy of "termination," the official status of reservations was ended altogether.

Less than half now live on reservations. In 2012 only about 1 million of the approximately 2.5 million American Indians lived on reservations.[1] Nevertheless, many genealogical researchers who have American Indian ancestors know of a reservation where such an ancestor once lived.

For further reading see:

Research[edit | edit source]

Finding records. Usually, it is best to first  look for records of American Indian ancestors in regular non-Indian-types of records such as births, marriages, deaths, church records, cemeteries, censuses, and military records. After searching regular records of the general population where an ancestor lived, a researcher is better prepared to turn to more specialized American Indian sources.

If you know the reservation where an ancestor lived, use that information to determine the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) agency, and the tribe(s) usually associated with that reservation. The majority American Indian-specific records which can be used for genealogical research were created by an Indian ancestor's BIA agency. Use the reservation, tribe, and BIA agency information to help identify which agency records to research. Many BIA agency records also are available from the National Archives, its branches, or from the Family History Library.

Evolution of BIA agencies. The BIA agencies responsible for the various reservations changed over time. To learn more about the evolving organization of BIA agencies, and their connection with tribes, BIA superintendencies, and American Indian records see:

Wiki List of Reservations[edit | edit source]

For an alphabetical list of those reservations in the United States which are described in this Wiki, see the Category:American Indian Reservations.

Key to the Reservations Map[edit | edit source]

These key numbers correspond with the numbers on the map of "continental" (i.e. contiguous) United States reservations below.[2] For example, this key shows the #32 reservation on the map (in South Carolina) is the "Catawba" Reservation.

1. Absentee Shawnee OK
2. Acoma NM
3. Agua Caliente CA
4. Alabama-Coushatta TX
5. Alabama-Quassarte Creeks OK
6. Allegany NY
7. Apache OK
8. Bad River WI
9. Barona Ranch CA
10. Battle Mountain NV
11. Bay Mills MI
12. Benton Paiute CA
13. Berry Creek CA
14. Big Bend CA
15. Big Cypress FL
16. Big Lagoon CA
17. Big Pine CA
18. Big Valley CA
19. Bishop CA
20. Blackfeet MT
21. Bridgeport CA
22. Brighton FL
23. Burns Paiute Colony OR
24. Cabezon CA
25. Caddo OK
26. Cahuilla CA
27. Campo CA
28. Camp Verde AZ
29. Canoncito NM
30. Capitan Grande CA
31. Carson NV
32. Catawba SC
33. Cattaraugus NY
34. Cayuga NY
35. Cedarville CA
36. Chehalis WA
37. Chemehuevi CA
38. Cherokee NC
39. Cheyenne-Arapahoe OK
40. Cheyenne River SD
41. Chickasaw OK
42. Chitimacha LA
43. Choctaw MS
44. Citizen Band of Potawatomi OK
45. Cochiti NM
46. Coeur d'Alene ID
47. Cold Springs CA
48. Colorado River AZ/CA
49. Colville WA
50. Comanche TX
51. Coos, Lower Umpqua & Siuslaw OR
52. Coquille OR
53. Cortina CA
54. Coushatta LA
55. Cow Creek OR
56. Creek OK
57. Crow MT
58. Crow Creek SD
59. Cuyapaipe CA
60. Deer Creek MN
61. Delaware OK
62. Devils Lake ND
63. Dresslerville Colony NV
64. Dry Creek CA
65. Duckwater NV
66. Duck Valley ID/NV
67. Eastern Shawnee OK
68. East Cocopah AZ
69. Ely Colony NV
70. Enterprise CA
71. Fallon/Stillwater NV
72. Flandreau Indian School SD
73. Flathead MT
74. Fond du Lac MN
75. Fort Apache AZ
76. Fort Belknap MT
77. Fort Berthold ND
78. Fort Bidwell CA
79. Fort Hall ID
80. Fort Independence CA

81. Fort McDermitt NV/OR
82. Fort McDowell AZ
83. Fort Mohave AZ/CA
84. Fort Peck MT
85. Fort Yuma AZ/CA
86. Fort Sill Apache OK
87. Gila Bend AZ
88. Gila River AZ
89. Goshute NV/UT
90. Grande Ronde OR
91. Grand Portage MN
92. Grand Traverse MI
93. Greater Leech Lake MN
94. Grindstone CA
95. Hannahville MI
96. Havasupai AZ
97. Hoh WA
98. Hollywood FL
99. Hoopa Valley CA
100. Hopi AZ
101. Houlton Maliseets ME
102. Hualapai AZ
103. Inaja CA
104. Iowa KS/NE
105. Isabella MI
106. Isleta NM
107. Jackson CA
108. Jemez NM
109. Jicarilla NM
110. Kaibab AZ
111. Kalispel WA
112. Kaw OK
113. Kialegee Creek OK
114. Kickapoo KS/OK
115. Kiowa OK
116. Klamath OR
117. Kootenai ID
118. L'Anse MI
119. Lac Courte Oreilles WI
120. Lac du Flambeau WI
121. Lac Vieux Desert MI
122. Laguna NM
123. Las Vegas NV
124. Laytonville CA
125. La Jolla CA
126. La Posta CA
127. Likely CA
128. Lone Pine CA
129. Lookout CA
130. Los Coyotes CA
131. Lovelock Colony NV
132. Lower Brule SD
133. Lower Elwah WA
134. Lower Sioux MN
135. Lummi WA
136. Makah WA
137. Manchester CA
138. Manzanita CA
139. Maricopa AZ
140. Mashantucket Pequot CT
141. Mattaponi VA
142. Menominee WI
143. Mescalero NM
144. Miami OK
145. Miccosukee FL
146. Middletown CA
147. Mille Lacs MN
148. Mission CA
149. Moapa NV
150. Modoc OK
151. Mole Lake WI
152. Montgomery Creek CA
153. Morongo CA
154. Muckleshoot WA
155. Nambe NM
156. Narragansett RI
157. Navajo AZ/NM/UT
158. Nett Lake MN
159. Nez Perce ID
160. Nipmoc-Hassanamisco MA

161. Nisqually WA
162. Nooksack WA
163. Northern Cheyenne MT
164. Northwestern Shoshone UT
165. Oil Springs NY
166. Omaha NE
167. Oneida WI
168. Onondaga NY
169. Ontonagon MI
170. Osage OK
171. Otoe-Missouri OK
172. Ottawa OK
173. out of reserve enclave
174. Ozette WA
175. Paiute UT
176. Pala CA
177. Pamunkey VA
178. Pascua Yaqui AZ
179. Passamaquoddy ME
180. Paucatauk Pequot CT
181. Paugusett CT
182. Pawnee NE
183. Pechanga CA
184. Penobscot ME
185. Peoria OK
186. Picuris NM
187. Pine Ridge SD
188. Poarch Creek AL
189. Pojoaque NM
190. Ponca NM
191. Poosepatuck NY
192. Port Gamble WA
193. Port Madison WA
194. Potawatomi OK
195. Prairie Isle MN
196. Puertocito NM
197. Puyallup WA
198. Pyramid Lake NV
199. Quapaw OK
200. Quillayute WA
201. Quinault WA
202. Ramah NM
203. Ramona CA
204. Red Cliff WI
205. Red Lake MN
206. Reno-Sparks NV
207. Rincon CA
208. Roaring Creek CA
209. Rocky Boys MT
210. Rosebud SD
211. Round Valley CA
212. Rumsey CA
213. Sac And Fox KS/NE
214. Salt River AZ
215. Sandia NM
216. Sandy Lake MN
217. Santa Ana NM
218. Santa Clara NM
219. Santa Domingo NM
220. Santa Rosa CA
221. Santa Rosa (North) CA
222. Santa Ynez CA
223. Santa Ysabel CA
224. Santee NE
225. San Carlos AZ
226. San Felipe NM
227. San Ildefonso NM
228. San Juan NM
229. San Manual CA
230. San Pasqual CA
231. San Xavier AZ
232. Sauk Suiattle WA
233. Seminole FL
234. Seneca-Cayuga OK
235. Sequan CA
236. Shagticoke CT
237. Shakopee MN
238. Sheep Ranch CA
239. Sherwood Valley CA
240. Shingle Spring CA

241. Shinnecock NY
242. Shoalwater WA
243. Shoshone NV
244. Siletz OR
245. Sisseton ND/SD
246. Skokomish WA
247. Skull Valley UT
248. Soboba CA
249. Southern Ute CO
250. Spokane WA
251. Squaxon Island WA
252. St. Croix WI
253. St. Regis NY
254. Standing Rock ND
255. Stewarts Point CA
256. Stockbridge Munsee WI
257. Summit Lake NV
258. Susanville CA
259. Swinomish WA
260. Taos NM
261. Te-Moak NV
262. Tesuque NM
263. Texas Kickapoo TX
264. Tohono O'odham AZ
265. Tonawanda NY
266. Tonkawa OK
267. Torres Martinez CA
268. Toulumne CA
269. Trindad CA
270. Tulalip WA
271. Tule River CA
272. Tunica-Biloxi LA
273. Turtle Mountains ND
274. Tuscarora NY
275. Twentynine Palms CA
276. Umatilla OR
277. Uintah And Ouray UT
278. United Keetoowah Band Of Cherokee OK
279. Upper Sioux MN
280. Upper Skagit WA
281. Ute Mountain CO/NM
282. Vermilion Lake MN
283. Viejas CA
284. Walker River NV
285. Warm Springs OR
286. Washoe CA/NV
287. West Cocopah AZ
288. White Earth MN
289. Wichita OK
290. Wind River WY
291. Winnebago NE
292. Winnemucca NV
293. Woodford Indian Community CA
294. Wyandotte OK
295. XL Ranch CA
296. Yakama WA
297. Yankton SD
298. Yavapai AZ
299. Yerington NV
300. Yomba NV
301. Ysleta del Sur TX
302. Yurok CA
303. Zia NM
304. Zuni NM

Reservations Map[edit | edit source]

To enlarge this map, click on it, pause, and then click on it again.

United States Indian Bia-map-indian-reservations-usa.png

Reservations in Alaska[edit | edit source]

Alaska Indian reservations.png

Alaska has six additional American Indian reservations:[3]

  • Annette Islands Reservation; Federal, under the jurisdiction of Metlakatla Field Office, Tribes: Tsimposhian
  • Craig Reservation: State, under the jurisdiction of Prince of Wales Island, Tribe: Tlingit
  • Hoonah Reservation: State, under the jurisdiction of Chichagof Island, Tribe: Tlingit
  • Hydaburg Reservation: State, under the jurisdiction of Prince of Wales Island, Tribe: Haida
  • Kake Reservation: State, under the jurisdiction of Kupreanof Island, Tribe: Tlingit
  • Klawock Reservation: State, under the jurisdiction of Prince of Wales Island, Tribe: Tlingit

References[edit | edit source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 Indian reservations in Wikipedia: the Free Encyclopedia (accessed 5 June 2015).
  2. File:Bia-map-indian-reservations-usa.png in Wikimedia Commons (accessed 5 June 2015).
  3. Confederation of American Indians, Indian Reservations : a State and Federal Handbook (Jefferson, North Carolina : McFarland & Co., c1986), 1-7. At various repositories (WorldCat); FHL Book 970.1 In2.