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Burnett Family


The Burnett family has a long, rich history with the Potawatomi people. French fur trader William Burnett settled on the St. Joseph River near Niles, Michigan, after the Revolutionary War. He established two successful trading posts and eventually married Kaukima, daughter of revered Potawatomi leader Nanaquiba and sister to Topinabee. Kaukima and William had seven children: James, Abraham, John, Isaac, …

Doctrine of Discovery


The 1493 Doctrine of Discovery guided the colonization of the Americas and became part of U.S. law, history, and Euro-American dominant culture. This doctrine is a set of papals from the late 1400’s put out by the Pope. They are the legal basis for the theft of lands in the non-European world by colonizing European powers and legal justification for …

HEARTH Act


In 2013, Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell and Assistant Secretary of Indian Affairs Kevin K. Washburn joined Citizen Potawatomi Nation Chairman John “Rocky” Barrett to formally approve Tribal leasing regulations meant to spur investment and commercial development on the Nation’s trust lands in central Oklahoma. The regulations gave CPN the authority to decide how it wants to do business …

Trail of Death


In early September 1838, General John Tipton called for a council of Potawatomi leaders at Menominee’s village near Twin Lakes in Indiana to discuss the issue of removal. In reality, the General had no intention of talking about removal. He had been assigned the task of removing Indiana’s remaining Potawatomi population by Governor David Wallace who believed the Potawatomi couldn’t …

Treaty with the Chippewa, Etc. [1833]


The contested treaty of Prairie du Chien, Wisconsin was contracted between the United States and the United Nations of Chippewa, Ottawa and Potawatomi Indians. With the cession of two large tracts of land in northern Illinois and southwestern Wisconsin, the tribes were to receive sixteen thousand dollars and fifty barrels of salt, annually, forever as well as twelve thousand dollars …

Treaty with the Potawatomi [1815]


On July 18, 1815, the Potawatomi entered into a treaty with the United States at Portage des Sioux, Missouri. The treaty was a means to affirm previous compacts and ultimately draw peace between the Potawatomi Nation and the United States, resulting from the depredations caused and faced by both sides during the War of 1812.

Treaty with the Potawatomi [1861]


On Nov. 15, 1861, eight designated “chiefs” and more than seventy other members of the Potawatomi Nation met with federal agents to sign a treaty that would forever alter their community’s relationship with other Potawatomi and the U.S. government. The 1861 treaty initiated the process for acquiring fee-simple land allotments and U.S. citizenship for almost two-thirds of its members. This …

Treaty with the Potawatomi [1867]


On February 27, 1861, the Citizen Potawatomi entered into a treaty with the United States that established a new reservation for the Tribe in Indian Territory. Drafted to alleviate pressures the Citizen Potawatomi were facing following the Treaty of 1861 and subsequent allotment of reservation lands in Kansas, the new 1867 treaty stipulated that those who would move south were …

Treaty with the Wyandot, Etc. [1814]


Agreed to and signed at present Detroit, Michigan, the Treaty of Spring Wells was the last in a long line of peace compacts intent on ratifying previous treaties. Formally exonerating the Ojibwe, Odawa and Potawatomi for their participation in and alliance with Great Britain during the War of 1812, it also secured the United States’ patronage to the Three Fires …