April 1, 1989: In Canada, the Oka conflict began when some 200 Mohawk from the Kanesatake reserve marched through the town of Oka protesting plans to expand the village’s nine-hole golf course to 18 holes, saying expansion encroaches on their burial ground. A 78-day standoff began on July 11, 1990, and ended Sept. 26, 1990. The Oka Crisis cost the Quebec government an estimated $180 million, not including the cost of the army.
April 2, 2006: It was reported that Cecilia Fire Thunder, president of the Oglala Sioux Tribe in South Dakota, had joined with 14 co-chairs to form the South Dakota Campaign for Healthy Families. The group planned a referendum in favor of abortion.
April 3, 1730: Today, in the Cherokee village of Nequassee — modern day Franklin, North Carolina — Sir Alexander Cuming will oversee a ceremony making Chief Moytoy the “Emperor of the Cherokees.” This will be his final step in having the Cherokee acknowledge the sovereignty of King George II of England.
April 4, 1981: The American Indian Movement founds Camp Yellow Thunder in an effort to reclaim the sacred Black Hills of South Dakota. The occupation ends in 1987, leaving the question of the ownership of the Black Hills unresolved.
April 5, 1614: Capt. Samuel Argall negotiates a written treaty of friendship and alliance with the Chickahominy of Virginia, who are semi-independent of the Powhatan chiefdom.
April 6, 2018: Wilma Mankiller, 64, the first woman chief of the Cherokee Nation, died.
April 7, 1818: Gen. Andrew Jackson captured St. Marks, Florida, from the Seminole.
April 8, 1756: Gov. Robert Morris, of Pennsylvania, declares war on the Delaware and Shawnee. As a part of his declaration, he offers issued The Scalp Act, which offered bounties on the tribe. The Scalp Act lead to the killing of many innocent indigenous peoples from other tribes. The Scap Act bounty prisoners: men over 12 = 150 Spanish pieces of eight, women or boys = 130 Spanish pieces of eight. Scalps: men = 130 Spanish pieces of eight, women and boys = 50 Spanish pieces of eight.
April 9, 1874: President Grant orders that a certain tract of land in New Mexico Territory be set aside for whatever indigenous people the secretary decides should be placed there.
April 10, 1571: All eight members of a Jesuit mission in Virginia were killed by the local indigenous people, who pretended to be their friends.
April 11, 1859: The Quinault and Quileute treaties signed on July 1, 1855, and Jan. 25, 1856, will be officially proclaimed by the president of the U.S.
April 12, 2013: In France, a contested auction of dozens of Native American tribal masks went ahead following a Paris court ruling, in spite of appeals for a delay by the Hopi tribe, its supporters including actor Robert Redford and the U.S. government.
April 13, 1846: The two Cherokee factions (old settlers and new emigrants) continue to feud over who has legal control of the Cherokee Nation. Based on appeals from the old settlers and the agreement of the Bureau of Indian Affairs, President James Polk asks Congress to approve the creation of separate reservations for the two sides. The new emigrants will oppose the proposal. An agreement will be reached by both sides on Aug. 6, 1846.
April 14, 2007: The Morongo reservation in southern California and its 775 adult members reportedly received seven-tenths of their casino’s profits, which amounted to roughly $15,000 to $20,000 per person, per month. In 1989 the tribe’s average, annual household income was $13,000.
April 15, 1777: Today, American settlers in Boonesborough will survive an attack by the Shawnee. The fortifications of the town will prove to be too much for the indigenous people to surmount. The Shawnee will try again on July 4, 1777.
April 16, 1528: Panfilo de Narvaez sights indigenous peoples houses near Tampa Bay, Florida. He will anchor his boats in the area, today. Seeing Narvaez, the indigenous will abandon their village. Narvaez holds Spanish royal title to the land between the Rio de las Palmas and the cape of Florida.
April 17, 1818: Jackson sets out for Florida today to fight the Seminole. A regiment of indigenous and blacks was defeated at the Battle of Suwann in Florida, ending the first Seminole War.
April 18, 1644: Forces under 99-year-old Opechancanough, a leader of the Powhatan Confederacy, attacks the English along the Pamunkey and York rivers, 22 years after his first attack at Jamestown. His followers will kill almost 400 Virginia colonists.
April 19, 1859: Fort Mojave is established to “protect” the area from the Mojave and Paiutes.
April 20, 2017: The Cherokee Nation sued distributors and retailers of opioid medications for contributing to an epidemic of opioid abuse in the 14 Oklahoma counties that comprise the Cherokee Nation.
April 21, 1806: The Department of War establishes the office of superintendent of Indian trade. This position will be appointed by the president. The job will entail the purchase of goods “for and from the Indians.”
April 22, 1877: Two Moons, Hump and 300 other Indians surrender to Col. Nelson Miles, today. Most of the rest of Crazy Horse’s followers will surrender on May 6, 1877, at the Red Cloud and Spotted Tail agencies.
April 23, 1200: The Anasazi in southwest Colorado began building their cliff dwellings at Mesa Verde about this time. The population thrived here for about 70 years making corrugated pottery, and handsomely decorated black and white pottery.
April 24, 1754: Delaware Chief Teedyuscung will lead a group of 70 Christian indigenous out of the village of Gnadenhutten today. They will leave to live in the village of Wyoming, Pennsylvania.
April 25, 1838: Abraham, a former slave to the Seminole in Florida who is freed and elevated by them to “sense bearer,” or counselor, writes a letter to T.S. Jesup, commander at Tampa, Florida, that he “will go with the Indians to their new home west of the Mississippi River.” Since he speaks English, he continues as an interpreter for U.S. officials dealing with the Seminole.
April 26, 1300: The Anasazi indigenous culture of the American Southwest — some 15,000 to 20,000 people — disappeared from the Four Corners region by this time. The Four Corners is a region consisting of the southwestern corner of Colorado, northwestern corner of New Mexico, northeastern corner of Arizona and southeastern corner of Utah. It is named after the quadripoint where the boundaries of the four states meet. All the Anasazi were gone from Mesa Verde. They probably moved south and broke up into present-day Pueblo tribes. Anasazi means enemy ancestors in Navajo.
April 27, 1877: Gen. George Crook contacts Red Cloud with a message for Crazy Horse. Crook promises that if Crazy Horse surrenders, he will get a reservation in the Powder River area. On this date, Red Cloud delivers the message to Crazy Horse. Crazy Horse agrees and heads to Fort Robinson, in northwestern Nebraska, where he will surrender to the U.S. Army.
April 28, 1882: Remnants of Loco’s Chiricahua Apache, who fought in the battles south of Stein’s Pass and in Horseshoe Canyon on April 23, 1882, are attacked by U.S troops led by Capt. Tullius Tupper (Troops G and M, 6th Cavalry, and a company of indigenous scouts), 25
miles south of Cloverdale, Arizona. Six Apache are killed and 72 head of livestock are seized, according to Army reports. The surviving indigenous people head toward Mexico.
April 29, 1994: President Clinton’s executive memorandum. The president sought to “clarify our responsibility to ensure that the federal government operates within a government-to-government relationship with federally recognized Native American tribes. I am strongly committed to building a more effective day-to-day working relationship reflecting respect for the rights of self-government due the sovereign tribal governments.”
April 30, 1871: Anglo and Mexican vigilantes killed 118 Apache at Camp Grant, Arizona, and kidnapped 28 children.