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Indian Child Welfare Act


Having endured the boarding school years, where children were taken far from their families and placed in schools designed to strip them of their culture, the continuation of Native child adoption by non-Indian families proved one of the direst issues facing tribal communities by the 1970’s. For generations, Indian families lost their children to federal agents, who, at their discretion, …

Indian Gaming & Regulatory Act [IGRA]


The Indian Gaming & Regulatory Act was a law passed by Congress attempting to mitigate the growing frustration states had with their inability to tax and regulate sovereign Indian nations’ gaming operations. Beginning in the 1960’s and 1970’s, tribal communities across the United States began operating bingo houses to raise money for their communities. As states also attempted to channel …

Indian Removal Act


In the years after the defeat of the British and their Indian allies in the War of 1812, the nature of the U.S. government’s Indian policy and the goal of treaty-making became increasingly hostile toward Native Americans, opening the door for the removals of the 1830s. The federal government was no longer interested in negotiating treaties that just arranged for …

Indian Reorganization Act


The Indian Reorganization Act (IRA), known also as the Wheeler-Howard Act for the two United States Senators sponsoring the bill, was the first major effort from the U.S. federal government to allow tribes to govern their own affairs. The IRA provided tribal nations with resources to create a written constitution, halted the allotment process, and authorized funds for use by …

Indian Self-Determination Act


In the years following the disastrous policy of Termination, the United States federal government began shifting its energies towards investing in tribal autonomy as a way of managing Indian affairs. Beginning formally with a 1961 Commission on the Rights, Liberties, and Responsibilities of the American Indian concluding that top-down initiatives lacking cooperation with tribal community members are destined for failure, …

Indian Territory Reservation


The provisions for Citizen Potawatomi’s move to the Indian Territory were stipulated in a treaty signed on February 27, 1867. Signatories and the officials from the Office of Indian Affairs agreed that a delegation of Citizen Potawatomi travel to the Indian Territory and select a tract of land, not exceeding 30 miles square. The treaty stipulated that they would buy …

Indicator Plant


A plant used to refer to the environmental conditions of a certain place. An example of an indicator plant would be Menomen or wild rice (Zizania spp.). Menomen is one of the most well-known indicator plants for the Neshnabek. Menomen is arguably the most significant cultural plant and it requires very clean, clear water that flows gently and does not …

Infectious Disease


Culture, warfare and assimilation all play significant parts in the history of Native Americans and infectious disease, spanning from the 1600s to present day. Scarce medical records among Native Americans prior to Europeans’ arrival make it difficult to know the severity of communicable illnesses before contact. Indigenous peoples’ settlement patterns that included dispersed communities and significant travel time between locations …

Iowah


Iowah was a young and influential headman among the Wabash Potawatomi. He was the nephew of headman and principal orator Naswawkay. Along with his brother M’joquis, he led a younger faction of Potawatomi who allied themselves with U.S. Indian agents. Together, the allies conspired and unlawfully sold reserve lands belonging to leaders who refused to cede their reservations to the …