Chronography of the USA-Indigenous American Nations
Page last modified 24/12//2021
Indigenous American Nations (see also Alaska, Florida)
21/9/2004, The National Museum of the American Indian opened in Washington DC.
30/6/1980, In the US, the Sioux nation won US$ 122.5 million in compensation and interest for illegal government seizure of their land in 1871.
28/5/1973, Actor Marlon Brando refused an Oscar in protest at the USA�s treatment of indigenous Americans.
2/6/1924, The US now allowed indigenous Indians to become full citizens. Indigenous Indian, Learned Hand, became the first Native American judge of the US Court of Appeals, serving until 1956.
1923, The Navajos set uo a Tribal Council, intitally to approve an oil and gas lease.
9/1/1918, U.S troops engaged Yaqui indigenous Americans warriors in the Battle of Bear Valley in Arizona, a minor skirmish and one of the last battles of the American Indian Wars between the United States and indigenous Americans.
10/1/1917, William �Buffalo Bill� Cody died, aged 71. He was a pony express rider before the Civil War, in which he fought; after, he supplied meat to the workers of the Kansas Pacific Railroad, hence his name. As chief of scouts for the US military he fought in several battles against the Indians, which made him famous.
23/2/1911, Quanah Parker, 65, Principal Chief of the Comanche Nation, died.
29/1/1907, Charles Curtis became U.S. Senator for Kansas, the first Indigenous American to become a Senator.
16/9/1891, The Sioux national finally formally surrendered to the USA.
29/12/1890. The Battle of Wounded Knee in South Dakota. This was the last major conflict between indigenous Americans, the Sioux, and US troops.
15/12/1890. Chief Sitting Bull, Sioux leader (born ca.1831), was shot dead in a scuffle with police in South Dakota whilst resisting arrest. He had fled to Canada after his victory over General Custer at Little Bighorn in 1876. He returned to the USA in 1881 and was jailed for 2 years. He performed for several years with Buffalo Bill�s travelling Wild West Show, but the suffering of his people led him to join the new Ghost Dance Movement, dedicated to destroying the Whites and restoring the lost Indian world. The US Government sent troops to suppress the Ghost Dance Movement and arrest its leaders; Sitting Bull was shot in the skirmish.
2/5/1890. The Federal Territory of Oklahoma was created; it was formerly known as the Indian Territory. On 22/4/1889 the US government, via a single shot fired at noon, had signalled the start of a great race for land by white settlers. An estimated 200,000 people crossed into the land once home to 75,000 Indians, who had to move on. By nightfall 22/4/1889 almost all of Oklahoma�s 2 million acres had been claimed.
8/2/1887. The USA passed the Dawes Act. This granted US citizenship to Indigenous Americans living outside the reservations, but also allowed the President to overrule Indian governments and sell traditional communally-owned tribal lands to private owners.
4/10/1877, The Indigenous American leader of the Nez Pierce tribe, Chief Joseph, surrendered to the US Army. His people were cold and exhausted after a long march from the tribe�s lands in Oregon after gold was discovered on their lands. Joseph and his people were sent to live on the non Nez Pierce reservation of Colville, eastern Washington, where Joseph died in 1904.
15/9/1877, Crazy Horse, Sioux Chief, one of the leaders at the victory of Little Big Horn in 1876, died.
17/6/1877, Nez Perce indigenous Americans, led by Chief Joseph, succefully resisted US soldiers at White Bird Canyon, where conflict had begun between the Nez Perce and White prospectors seeking gold along the Salmon River. However see 4/10/1877.
6/5/1877. Chief Crazy Horse and his Sioux indigenous Americans gave themselves up to US troops, abandoning claims to Nebraska.
25/6/1876. Custer�s Last Stand took place at Little Bighorn, Montana. Custer died with all 264 men of his 7th cavalry. The killing was done by Sioux Indians led by Chiefs Crazy Horse and Gall. The Battle was the result of a confused policy by the US government towards the Indians. The Indians, Eastern Sioux, and Northern Cheyennes, had been guaranteed exclusive possession of the Dakota territory west of the Missouri River, but white miners were settling in the Black Hills area searching for gold; this was an area the Sioux considered sacred. The US government refused to move the miners and so conflict became inevitable. The Indians were asked to leave or be considered hostile and in June 1876 US soldiers moved in. However Custer, with his 650 men, was unaware that the Indians had 1,500 warriors close by. After the disaster of Little Bighorn, the US army flooded the area with soldiers, forcing the Indians to surrender.
31/1/1876, All American Indians were ordered to move to reservations. Many of the Sioux did not comply.
2/7/1874, The US Government ordered General George A Custer to lead a reconnaissance expedition into the Black Hills territory of the Sioux Indians.
9/6/1874, Cochise, Apache chief and war leader against White settlers, died.
3/10/1873, Indigenous American Modoc Chief Kintpuash (Captain Jack) was hanged at Fort Klamath, after leading an insurrection against forced location on the Klamath Reseervation.
4/1873, Geronimo and other Chiefs, worn down by lack of food and ammunition and continually harried by US troops, gavfe up the fight and agreed to live on reservations. However after a few years, unable tpo bear the restrictions of reservation life and facing continued agreement-breaking by White settlers, some Indigenous Americans resumed raiding. Game and other food was scarce on these reservations. Soime Indigenous Americans would flee across the border to Mexico when US troops closed in, where they could not follow.
1872, Cochise, Apache Chief, finally signed a peace treaty with the European settlers and agreed to his people living on a reservation. Other Chiefs siuch as Geronimo fought on.
30/4/1871, Around 150 White men and Papago Indigenous Americans, who had traditionally hated the Apache, raided camp Grant in southern Arizona and attacked the Arivaipa Apache tribe. 108 were killed but most of the victims were women and children, because the men were mostly away hunting. Only 8 of the victims were men. N29 children were taken hostage and later sold as slaves in Mexico. The leaders of the raid were arrested but soon acquitted, and the massacre precipitated the Apache Wars of 1871-73, as US President Ulysses S Grant stepped up measures to confine the Apache to reservations, where they could be forcibly �civilised�.
3/3/1871, US Congress passed the Indian Appropriation Act. Many Indigenous Americans had already ceded their lands by treaty and then been moved to reservations. However this Act now made all tribes wards of the US Government and voided all previous treaties recognising each tribe�s reservation status as a separate nation.
27/11/1868, Lieutenant Colonel George Custer and his 7th cavalry attacked the village of Cheyenne Indian chief Black Kettle. The Indians had been resisting the building of a railway in their territory.
6/11/1868. Oglala Sioux Indians, led by Chief Red Cloud, signed a peace treaty with General William Sherman, representing the US Government, at Fort Laramie. This ended 2 years of fighting between Indians and gold miners.
12/8/1868, Under duress, Navajo Chiefs signed a Treaty with the US Government agreeing to live on a 3.5 million reservation which was only a small portion of the former Navajo domain. The reservation later grew to 14.5 million acres, but was mostly desert and semi-desert, with just 68,000 acres of farmland. Meanwhile during a 5-year period of Navajo internment their population had fallen from 10,000 to 8,000 and of their former 200,000 sheep, just 940 were left.
21/5/1867, Frances Theresa Densmore was born in Red Wing, Minnesota. She recorded and documented the songs and music of over 30 Indigenous American tribes before her death at age 87.
21/12/1866, The Bozeman Trail, built by the US Government to enable miners to export their product to the east coast, was encroaching on Sioux hunting grounds and Chief Red Cloud (1822-1909) warned that this was unacceptable. The US built Fort Phil Kearney to guard the trail in northern Wyoming, but was then attacked by the Sioux. An 82-strong force under William Judd Fetterman was sent to rescue the fort but was lured into a trap and massacred by some 1,500 Sioux under Chief High Backbone this day. Parts of the Bozeman trail were subsequently closed.
29/11/1864, The Sand Creek massacre; Cheyenne and Arapahoe Indians were waiting to surrender to US forces when soldiers under the command of Colonel Chivington slaughtered them.
28/7/1864, US General Alfred Sully (1821-79) heavily defeated the Sioux at Killdeer Mountain.
3/3/1863. Congress provided for the forcible removal of all Indians from the state of Kansas.
26/12/1862, 38 Sioux Indigenous Americans were hanged; 345 had been sentenced to death but most had their sentences commuted. This was the largest ever mass execution in the US.
23/9/1862, US troops under the Governor of Minnesota, Henry H Sibley (1811-91) decisively defeated the Sioux under Chief Little Crow at Wood Lake (now in North Dakota).
24/8/1862, The Sioux under Chief Little Crow attacked Fort Ridgeley, on the Upper Minnesota River.
17/8/1862, A Sioux uprising in Minnesota led by Chief Little Crow was suppressed. White settlers had occupied the best hunting grounds, leaving the Sioux short of food.
1858, Only about 150 Seminole Indians remained in the remoter areas of Florida after a war on them (Second Seminole War) by Federal soldiers. Between 1835 and 1842, some 3,000 soldiers were killed, and only some 300 Seminoles escaped death or deportation. The Army returned again in 1855 in the Third Seminole War.
11/9/1858, The Mountain Meadows Massacre in Utah. 135 migrants on the Fancher wagon train were ambushed, and nearly all killed, by Pahute Indians; however the Indians were acting under instructions from the Mormon leader, Brigham Young.
8/3/1857, In revenge for the killing of several Sioux by a White trader, a band of Sioux under Chief Inkpaduta this day raided a newly built White settlement near Spirit Lake, northwestern Iowa. They killed 32 people and took 4 mpore captive. The Sioux were pursued by troops from Fort Ridgeley, Minnesota, but they failed to catch them.
27/5/1856, At Fort Lane, where the Oregon indigenous Americans were supposed to formally surrender to the US Army (after attacks by White settlers on their villages in the Red River area of Oregon through 1855, to seize their lands), the Indians instead attacked the soldiers. The next day (28/5) US reinforcements arrived and the Indians fled. However within a month they had surrendered and were herded into Pacific Coast Reservations.
23/7/1851, Sioux Chieftains ceded all their land in Iowa, as well as some in Minnesota, to the US Government.
3/6/1850, Five Cayuse Indigenous Americans were executed in the USA by the military following raids by the Cayeuse on White settlements.
27/11/1847, Cayeuse Indigenous Americans killed 14 White settlers in the Oregon area, whom they blamed for the measles epidemic that had killed many of the Cayeuse.
5/12/1839, Birth of George Armstrong Custer, US cavalry commander famous for �Custer�s Last Stand� against the Cheyenne and Sioux Indians.
1838, Indian title to the lands of Minnesota was extinguished by the US Government.
23/5/1838, General Winfield-Scott ordered the forced removal of the Cherokee Indians from their original lands into reservations 800 miles west in what is now Oklahoma. About 4,000 of the 14,000 Cherokees died along the �Trail of Tears�.
25/12/1837, Seminole Indians were defeated at US forces under 53-year-old Colonel Zachary� Taylor. Meanwhile Seminole leader Osceola was tricked into emerging from hiding to sign a truce, and arrested amnd taken to Fort Moultrie, South Carolina, where he died in 1838. Most of the Seminole in Florida were killed over the next few years. See 1858.
1835, A Second Seminole War (see 1819) began after a 31-year-old Seminole man killed a chief who had signed the 1832 Treaty, also a US agent at Fort King. A 2-year guerrilla war now began against US forces led by General Thomas S Jesup
29/12/1835, The Treaty of New Echota was signed between the US Government and the Indigenous American Cherokee Nation, after which the Cherokees were moved to the Oklahoma Territory along the �Trail of Tears�.
28/12/1835. Over 100 US troops were killed by Seminole Indians resisting attempts to drive them out of Florida.
28/10/1834, Florida Seminole Indians were ordered to move to an Indian Territory set up west of the Mississippi (see 9/5/1832).
30/6/1834, US Congress set up a Department of Indian Affairs.
14/10/1832, The Chicasaw Indians ceded their land east of the Mississippi to the United States.
21/9/1832, The Sauk and Fox Indigenous American tribes agreed to remain west of the Mississippi.
2/8/1832, Illinois militiamen massacred Indian warriors at Bad Axe River in Wisconsi Territory, during the Black Hawk War.
9/5/1832, Seminole Indians in Florida ceded their land to the United States and agreed to move west of the Mississippi. See 28/10/1834.
24/3/1832, The Creek Indians ceded all their land east of the Mississippi to the United States.
3/3/1832, The US Supreme Court ruled, in the case of Worcester v. Georgia, that the US Government had exclusive authority over tribal Indians and their lands in any State.
27/5/1831, Comanche Indians on the Cimarron killed Jeremiah Smith.
18/3/1831, The US Supreme Court ruled that indigenous Indigenous American tribes could not sue for their rights in a Federal Court� �because they weren�t full citizens, and their reservations weren�t foreign nations�.
15/9/1830. The Choctaw Indians ceded their lands east of the Mississippi River.
28/5/1830. The USA passed the Indian Removal Act, giving the Indians perpetual title to western lands. The Indians were wary, aware of valuable mineral deposits beneath these western lands.
20/12/1828. Cherokee Indians ceded their traditional lands in Arkansas territory to the USA and agreed to migrate to lands west of the Mississippi River.
11/3/1824, The Bureau of Indian Affairs was created by US Secretary of War, John C Calhoun.
1823, The Arikara War. The Arikara Indigenous Americans began attacking White trappers who were encroaching on their lands� US troops under Colonel Henry H Leavenworth (1783-1834) now mounted a punitive expedition agaoinst the SArikara, who were eventually resettled on a reservation at Fort Berthold, North Dakota, in the 1860s.
14/10/1823, Chicksaw Indian tribal chiefs ceded land east of the Mississippi River to the United States Government.
1819, First Seminole War; The US army under Major General Andrew Jackson, having taken Florida from Spain, now set about evicting the local Seminole Indians from the best farmland. The four thousand Seminoles refused to move, and the First Seminole War lasted until 1826. See 1835.
29/9/1817, Under the Fort Meigs Treaty, 6,000 square miles of land previously belonging to the Ohio Indians was ceded to the US Government. In return the Indians received 144 square miles, the �Grand Reserve, on the Upper Sandusky.
9/8/1814. By the Treaty of Fort Jackson the Creek Indians ceded their claims to about half of present day Alabama, and by a further series of treaties in 1830 and 1835 the Indians were transferred further west.
22/7/1814. Five Indian tribes in Ohio made peace with the USA and declared war on the British.
27/3/1814, US General Andrew Jackson (1767-1845) attacked and defeated the Creek Indigenous Americans at the Battle of Horseshoe Bend, on the Tallapoosa River, eastern Alabama. Over 800 Creek warriors were killed sand their power eliminated. See 9/8/1914.
9/11/1813, In the USA, General Andrew Jackson defeated Cree Indians at Taledega in a retaliatory attack following a Cree attack in August 1813 in which 500 White settlers were massacred.
30/8/1813, A band of Creek Indians, the Red Sticks, wanted to avenge a recent ambush of them by White settlers, also to recover Creek lands taken by the settlers. This day the Red Sticks under Chief Red Eagle (William Weatherford, died 1824) made s surprise raid on Fort Mims, at the confluence of the Alabama and Tombighee Rivers, and massacred some 500 Whites. This provoked a campaign by US militia,men to crush the Creek nation.
7/11/1811, The Battle of Tippecanoe. The Shawnee Indians were heavily defeated by US General Harrison.
30/9/1809, The Treaty of Fort Wayne was signed by Governor Harrison and Chiefs of the Delaware, Miami and Potawatomi Indian tribes, ceding 5,500 square miles of territory to the Federal Government. Two tribal leaders, Tecumseh and Tensquatawa, refused to sign.
24/11/1807, Joseph Brant, American Indian chief of the Mohawks, died (born 1742).
4/11/1791, Indigenous Americans under Chief Little Turtle (1752-1812) ,made a surprise attack on Arthur St C;lair�s forces (see 3/10/1791), killing over half of them and forcing the survivors to make a humiliating retreat. An investigation by Congress blamed the inexperience of the soldiers.
3/10/1791, Arthur St Clair, (1736-1818) set out to subdue the indigenous Americans of the Northwest territory, an earlier mission by Josaih Harmar (1753-1813) having failed to accomplish this. See 4/11/1791.
3/10/1790, John Ross, Cherokee Chief, was born.
7/8/1790, Alexander McGillivray, chief of the Muskogian Indians, signed a treaty of peace and friendship with President Washington.
26/11/1789. Thanksgiving was celebrated across America for the first time.� In 1621 the indigenous Americans had taught early Plymouth settlers how to tap the maple trees for sap and how to plant the Indian corn. The harvest was very successful and the Pilgrims found they had enough food to see them through the winter. The Pilgrim Governor William Bradford proclaimed a Day of Thanksgiving to be shared by all colonists and invited the Indians to join them for three days. During the American Revolution of the late 1770s, a Day of National Thanksgiving was suggested by the Continental Congress and was celebrated nationwide in 1789. Since then each President has issued a Thanksgiving Day proclamation, usually designating the fourth Thursday in November as the holiday.
8/3/1782, The Gnadenhutten Massacre in Delaware. 160 volunteers under Colonel David Williamson attacked the Moravian mission town of Gnadenhutten. 90 Christian indigenous American Indian men women and children were slaughtered, and the mission church burnt down. A few survivors managed to flee to Canada.
20/4/1777, The Cherokee Nation ceded all their land in South Carolina to the US federal government by the De Witts Corner Treaty.
30/4/1774, In Ohio, the Yellow Creek (or, Baker�s Cabin) Massacre took place. The settler-friendly Tahgah-Jute family of Shawnee Indigenous Americans, and some Mingo Indigenous Americans, were slaughtered by Whites led by Daniel Greathouse.
20/4/1769, Pontiac, indigenous American leader, died.
5/11/1768. William Johnson, the Northern Indian Commissioner, signed a treaty with the Iriquois Indians to acquire much of the land between the Tennessee and Ohio rivers for future settlement.
15/2/1764, The city of St Louis, Missouri, was founded as a trading post between Europeans and Indigenous Americans.
14/12/1763, The Paxton Massacre. Indigenous Americans in Pennsylvania were slaughtered by Europeans from the town of Paxton. They then marched on Pennsylvania to massacre more Indigenous Americans, but were deterred by US troops.
6/8/1763, Indigenous American attacks on British forts and outposts had destroyed many (see 31/7/1763) but Forts Niagara, Pitt and Detroit had not fallen. This day a British relief force under Colonel Henry Boquet (1719-65) reached Fort Pitt and defeated the indigenous Americans attacking it. From Spring 1764 the Briitsh gradually overcame all indigenous American unrest, although Pontiac himself did not sue for peace until 1766, whenh he signed a peace treaty and was pardoned by the British.
31/7/1763, Battle of Bloody Run. Pontiac (1720-69), Chief of the Ottowa� indigenous Americans, was emragred at British appropriation of the fertile plains of the Ohio River (given to them under the 1763 Treaty of Paris) and in 5/1763 led a surprise attack on Fort Detroit, but failed to capture it. However a British attack on Pontiac�s army was heavily defeated this day, see 6/8/1763.
7/5/1763. Four Indian tribes united to lay siege to the British stronghold of Fort Detroit. However the British had forewarning of the plan by the Delaware, Chippawa, Shawnee, and Ottawa tribes and had strengthened their fortifications. The Indians were concerned at the loss of their fur trade to the British, and wanted a return to the old Indian customs. In November 1763 the Indians lifted the siege after failing to gain French support.
9/8/1757, French General Louis de Montcalm (1712-59) attacked the British held Fort William Henry, gateway to northern Canada. Outnumbered, the fort�s commender, Colonel Munro laid down his arms and honourably surrendered, having been promised safe passage by Montcalm. However the� Indigenous Americans allied to the French then turned on the British, to the horror of Montcalm.� Risking his own life he managed to restore order, however many Biritsh were killed. The survivors reached safety at Fort Edward.
28/11/1729, In Louisiana, Natchez Indians massacred over 200 White settlers after the colonists tried to appropriate the Indians traditional burial grounds.
1725, End of the Third Abnaki War, 1722-25. Engtlish settlers had encroached on Abnaki lands, and the French Jesuit missionary Sebastien Rasles encourage dthem to resist. The English attempted to seize rasles, and the Abnakiintensified their raids on Englisah settlements at Brunswick, Arrowsick and Merry Meeting Bay. The English then also fought back harder, killing Rasles at the battle of Norridgewock (1724), also Fryburg (1725). The War was ended by peace conferences at Boston and Casco Bay.
15/4/1715, Yamasee indigenous Americans attacked English White fur traders after White settlers had encroached on their lands. The Whites counterattacked but the Yamasee fled south to Florida and allied with the Spanish, enemies of the English. The English attacked again in 1727 and the Yamasee were wiped out in a war with the Creek Indians in 1733.
3/1713, White settlers counterattacked the Tuscarora Indigenous Americans, after the raid of 22/11/1711. The Tuscarora surrendered, and were forced to trek northwards to join the Iriquois Confederacy.
1712, End of Second Abnaki War, 1702-12. Allied French and Abnaki forces attacked English settlers, but when the English and French started to make peace, in 1712, the Abnaki, now alone, were forced to sue for peace with the English. See also First Abnaki War 1678, and Third Abnaki War 1725,
22/11/1711, Tuscarora indigenous Americans launched a surprise attack on 200 White settlers on the Chowan and Roanoke Rivers. See 3/1713.
23/6/1683, William Penn signed a treaty of peace and friendship with chiefs of the Lenapi Indian tribe, at Shakamaxon.
1680, Revolt by the Arizona Indigenous Americans against the Spanish.
1678, End of the First Abnaki War (1675-78). The Abnaki People, living in what is now Maine, new Hampshire and Vermont, had allied with the French against the English, harrying them for much of the 1600s. In 1675 hostilities intensified, and the English were forced to conclude a peace treaty in 1687, paying an annual tribute to the Abnaki. See also 1712, Second Abnaki War.
29/5/1677, The Treaty of Middle Plantation established peace between the Virginia colonists and the local Indians.
12/8/1676, King Philip, American Indian Chief, was killed.� The Indian War in New England ended.
19/12/1675, A White colonist army, 1,000 strong, attacked an indigenous American Narraganset fort near what is now Kingston, Rhode island. The colonists were repulsed but succeeded in enytering the fort by the rear. The Narraganset along with their Wampanoag allies foled, but their Chief, Canonchet,� was killed in the following year.
26/5/1673, John Mason, Goveronr-General of the Connecticut Colony, led spoldiers to massacre Pequot indigenous Americans. His forces killed over 400, mainly women and children.
1659, Nantucket Island, Massachusetts, was bought from the American Indians by Thomas Macy for �30 and two beaver hats.
1641, The Algonquian-Dutch War, 1641-45. Algonquian Indians, angered by Dutch settlers 9on Staten Island taking theor lands, attacked the Europeans. A truce was arranged in 1642 but in 2/1643 thye Dutch enlisted the Mohawk as allies, armed them and attacked the Algonquians. The Dutch imposed a final peace settlement in 8/1645.
26/5/1637, The English massacred women and children of the Pequot Indians, in revenge for the murder of a slave trader, John Oldham, in July 1636. The Pequot men were away from their villages, tending the fields, so the English massacre was a very one-sided affair. Other Indigenous American tribes were either enemies of the Pequot, or intimidated into not assisting them, and a guerrilla war by the Pequot finally ended when these other tribes captured and killed the Pequot leader, Sassacus.
13/12/1636, The Massachusetts Bay Colony organised three militia regiments to defend against the Pequot Indians.� This was the founding of the United States National Guard.
22/3/1622, The Jamestown Massacre.� Algonquin Indians killed 347 English settlers outside Jamestown, Virginia, a third of the colony�s population, and burnt the Henricus settlement.
21/3/1617, Algonquin Indian princess Pocohontas, born ca.1595,died.
5/4/1614. An Indian Princess, Pocahontas, was married to John Rolfe, a Jamestown settler, in an effort to bring peace to the settlement between the Powhatan Indians and the British.
1598, The Spanish led by Don Juan de Onate marched into what is now Arizona from Zapateca in Mexico, bringing thousands of sheep, cattle and goats, They subjugated the local Indigenous Americans into acting as herders, looking after these animals.
1513, The Spanish landed in Florida under Ponce de Leon. They were unable to subjugate the local Indigenous Americans, whom they termed cimarrones, or �wild ones�. They are now known as the Seminole.
1397, Physician and mapmaker Paolo Toscanelli was born in Florence, Italy. It was his incorrect map, showing Asia just 3,000 miles west of Europe, that persuaded Columbus to sail west from Europe.
2,000 BCE, Squashes, maize and beans were being cultivated across the south west of the present-dasy USA. Long distance trade routes were now established.
7,500 BCE, Earliest known cemetery in North America; the Sloan burial site.
11,500 BCE, Earliest date associated with the Clovis Culture of North America.
36,000 BCE, First humans reached North America,, across the Bering Strait.