COIN Resource Guide:
American Indian, & Indigenous Issues and Histories
The University of Minnesota occupies both Ojibwe lands and Dakota homelands. These lands were stolen by Minnesota settlers from Ojibwe and Dakota peoples through various forms of settler colonial violence, including but not limited to the dispossession, removal, and attempted genocide of the Ojibwe and Dakota people, the removal and relocation of the Ho-Chunk peoples out of Minnesota, as well as the state-mandated exile of the Dakota people from their ancestral territories within the state. The UMNTC campus specifically occupies ancestral/ contemporary Dakota homelands. COIN believes that all members of the University of Minnesota have responsibilities to learn about AND appropriately contend with the University's continued legacy of anti-Indian and anti-Indigenous violence.
We offer this Resource Guide in hopes that it will assist our fellow community members in learning more about Mni Sota Makoce; supporting American Indian Tribal, and global Indigenous sovereignty; in joining the global struggle for Indigenous land restoration/ rematriation; and taking appropriate, actionable steps towards better relations with Native & Indigenous peoples in Mni Sota Makoce and beyond.
Tribal Nations in Minnesota
Mni Sota Makoce (the original Dakota place name for Minnesota) is the ancestral/contemporary homeland of the Dakota people. Today, it is home to 11 federally-recognized American Indian Tribal Nations. Often called the "Minnesota Tribal Nations", these sovereign Nations include 7 Ojibwe Nations, and 4 Dakota Communities (below). There are also many other Tribal Nations who share historical claims to parts of Mni Sota Makoce.
Gichi-Onigaming/ Grand Portage
Nah-gah-chi-wa-nong/ Fond du Lac Band of Lake Superior Chippewa
Misi-zaaga'iganiing/ Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe
Zagaakwaandagowininiwag/ Bois Forte Band of Chippewa
Miskwaagamiiwi-Zaagaiganing/ Red Lake
Gaa-zagaskwaajimekaag/ Leech Lake
Gaa-waabaabiganikaag/ White Earth
Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community
Tina Winta/ Prairie Island Indian Community
Pezhutazizi/ Upper Sioux Community
Cansayapi/ Lower Sioux Indian Community
Beyond the Land Acknowledgement
More on Land Acknowledgements
AIS offers a broad range of courses that engage and cover American Indian & Indigenous histories, as well as topics, and political/environmental/social issues relevant to American Indian, Native Pacific Islander, and other global Indigenous communities and peoples. AIS offers several academic multidisciplinary programs for attaining a Bachelor of Art degree (B.A.) in American Indian Studies, Dakota Language, and/or Ojibwe Language.
Taking AIS courses is not only a good way of learning more about (or studying at advanced levels) American Indian and Indigenous histories and issues, but also a good way to satisfy some of the University's liberal arts credit requirements. A comprehensive list of AIS course offerings, and overviews of the AIS B.A. Programs are available on the department's official website.
UMN Library Resources for faculty, staff, and student researchers
The American Indians in Minnesota: Topics and Issues guide contains material on issues, histories, and topics pertinent to Dakota and Ojibwe communities and histories (specifically the experiences of Mni Sota Dakota and Ojibwe Tribal Nations) and Mni Sota (Minnesota) History))
The American Indian Studies guide is designed for new researchers looking for articles and sources on topics related to American Indian Studies.
The American Indian Studies - advanced guide contains books, sources, and material accessible through the UMN Libraries on language, American Indian treaties and government, methodologies and writing resources, and other areas of American Indian Studies research/intellectual work.
- The Indigenous Studies: Oceania guide includes intellectual material on Oceania (Melanesia, Micronesia, Polynesia, and Australia), and the Indigenous peoples of these places from various academic fields and disciplines, including but not limited to American Indian & Indigenous Studies, and Global Indigenous Studies.
As a University-wide interdisciplinary center, the Institute for Advanced Study is a resource for scholars, artists, professionals, and students who are engaged in a wide variety of study and practice. The IAS also serves as a bridge between the University and the wider community as a place where people meet and ideas are exchanged. The IAS provides funding support for faculty research, interdisciplinary collaborative research, and public programming, as well as a range of other support for faculty, staff, students, the general public, and our community partners. You can view their public events calendar here.
Since its establishment in 2020, Minnesota Transform, the $5M higher education initiative funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, has undertaken a variety of projects that support decolonial and racial justice across Minnesota, the Twin Cities, and the University. One of these is the the Towards Recognition and University-Tribal Healing (TRUTH) Project.
Established in response to the 2020 resolutions written by the Minnesota Indian Affairs Council (MIAC) calling on the University of Minnesota to be better relatives to the 11 Tribal Nations, the TRUTH Project is a collaborative effort between MIAC and the University. You can read their full 2023 report, which details the University's land-grant historical origins, and includes a series of policy recommendations for the University to repair its relations with the MN Tribal Nations.
This page was last updated by Gabriela Ines Diaz in November 2023