Idaho Native American Tribes
The Coeur d'Alene Tribe – "The Coeur d'Alene Indian Tribe has a current enrollment of 1,922 (in 2007). The tribe has sovereign authority on a reservation covering 345,000 acres of mountains, lakes, timber and farmland, spanning the western edge of the northern Rocky Mountains and the abundant Palouse county. The Tribe, like all tribes in America, has a government executive, legislative and judical branches. . . .The Coeur d'Alene has been in this homeland for many thousands of years. The original homeland spans almost five million acres, stretching from Montana in the east to the Spokane River Valley in present day Washington State, from near the Canadian border in the north to near the confluence of the Snake and Clearwater Rivers in north Idaho. Tribal traditions include a respect and reverance for natural law, and creates a powerful voice for responsible enviornmental stewardship. The Coeur d'Alene Tribe, Plummer, ID"1
The Kootenai Tribe – "The Kootenai Tribe of Idaho is a sovereign nation governed by the Kootenai Tribal Council. . .The Kootenai people lived in peace until the arrival of strangers. . .They wanted the Native Americans to sign a treaty and moved to a reservations. The Kootenai people kept the Covenant and no Kootenai ever signed a treaty. . .The U.S.–Canadian border split the people into seven communities. . . On September 20, 1974, following years of loss of their aboriginal lands, the 67 remaining Kootenai declared war on the United States. Although it was a peaceful war, the publicity got the nation's attention and at long last the Kootenai were deeded 12.5 acres of land. Things took a positive turn for the tribe. In 1986, the Kootenai Tribe of Idaho celebrated the first major step in their economic independence – the Kootenai River Inn. . . .Kootenai Tribe of Idaho, Bonners Ferry, ID"1
Nez Perce Tribe – "The Nez Perce Tribe is federally recognized as a sovereign government with headquarters located at Lapwai, Idaho. There are approximately 3,300 Tribal members (2007), two–thirds of whom live on or near the reservation. . . .Anthropological evidence documents that the Nimiipuu (the "real people" or "we the people") have inhabited their homelands for well over 11,000. The traditional homeland of the NiMiiPuu is North Central Idaho, including areas in Southeastern Washington, Northeastern Oregon with usual and accustomed areas in Western Montana and Wyoming. The NiMiiPuu aboriginal territory was approximately 17 million acres . . including the Clearwater River Basin, the South and Middle Forks of the Salmon River Basin and their tributaries. The present day reservation boundaries were established by the Treaty of 1863 and cover 750,000 acres. This was one of three treaties entered into with the United States government. . . .The Nez Perce Tribe of today is a complex and varied governmental structure that has an impact and influence in a wide variety of areas in the states of Idaho, Washington and Oregon. . .The Nez Perce Tribe is the second largest employer in the region and employs over 900 people at various locations across the reservation as well as in McCall, Idaho; Clarkston, Washington; and Joseph, Oregon. Major departments within the government include Natural Resources, Fisheries, health and human services, educational and cultural resources. . . Nez Perce Tribal Executive Committee, Lapwai, ID"1
The Search for the Nez Perce on the Payette National Forest, by Sheila D. Reddy
The Shoshone – Bannock Tribes – "Early trappers and settlers reported of Shoshone–Bannock people at the headwaters of the Salmon in techniques for harvesting fish in the Stanley Basin, 'they subsist upon the flesh of elk, deer and bighorns and upon salmon . .' In the early 1830's, the lower reaches of the Snake and its adjoining tributaries, the Boise, Payette, and Weiser to the East and the Owyhee, Malheur and Burn to the west continued to be highly productive fisheries for the Shoshone–Bannock people. . . For the Bannock, winter camp was usually made on the Snake River above Idaho Falls at the mouth of Henry's Fork. . . .Historically the Shoshones wintered apart from the Bannocks. They tended to spend the winter on the Portneuf River between Pocatello and McCammon. . . .Shoshone–Bannock Business Council, Inc., Fort Hall, ID."1
Additional Reading: Basin-Plateau Aboriginal Sociopolitical Groups, by J. H. Steward, at google books.
The Shoshone Paiute Tribes of the Duck Valley Indian Reservation – "The Tribes once freely occupied the lands of their forefathers and foremothers in the tri–state area of what is now Idaho, Nevada and Oregon. This however quickly changed at the coming of the populations of Europe. Lands and resources were wrestled away from the Shoshone and Paiute. Treaties were made with the United States of which some were ratified and others not. The chiefs signed all the treaties in good faith and for the survival of their people. Descendents of the Western Shoshone and the Northern Paiute occupy the Duck Valley Indian Reservation of Idaho and Nevada. Various bands of the two closely related tribes have jointly utilized the area from time immemorial. . . . Farming and Ranching are still mainstays for Duck Valley and is reflected in the 12,000 acres of subjugated lands. The Duck Valley Indian Reservation is composed of 289,819 acres held in trust by the United States Government for the use and occupancy of the Shoshone–Paiute Tribes. Wildhorse Reservoir was constructed in 1936 for the Duck Valley Irrigation Project. Tribal membership is over 1800 with approximately 1200 living on the reservation. The Shoshone–Paiute Tribes of Duck Valley continued to exist within the original territories of their ancestors. Shoshone Paiute Business Council, Owyhee, NV.1
Native American Land Patents, includes listings for The Coeur d'Alene, Kootenai and Nez Perce Tribes
Indian Census Rolls 1885-1940, at accessgenealogy
Indian Tribes of the United States at accessgenealogy
1 "The Idaho Blue Book, 2007–2008," published by Secretary of State, Ben Ysursa, for the State of Idaho. Each narrative courtesy of the individual tribe.
Copyright © 2013 – Sharon McConnel. All Rights Reserved.