Sioux Nation

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Guide to Sioux Nation ancestry, family history and genealogy: birth records, marriage records, death records, census records, parish registers, and other agency records.

To get started in American Indian Research

Sioux chiefs&leaders council that settled the Indian wars,PineRidge,S.Dakota.byJohnC.H.Grabill, 1891NO.33a.jpg
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Regions with significant populations
Ancestral Homelands: upper Mississippi River area to include Missouri, Iowa, and Nebraska

Several reservations for various divisions of the Sioux


Federally recognized

Linguistic Group

not yet researched

Cultural Group

not yet researched

Other Related Ethnic Groups

not yet researched

History[edit | edit source]

Some of the first non-Indians among the Sioux were Jesuit explorers and missionaries during the 1600's.

The Sioux migrated westward to the Missouri River area and beyond pushed by inter tribal conflict with the Chippewa and encroaching settlers.

During the mid 1860's the federal government wanted to establish the Bozeman Trail, the military began establishing forts, these actions were the spark for Red Cloud's War. Chief Red Cloud lead his warriors, they were joined by other tribes in their fight against the fort and troops the Indians were successful in blocking the establishments of the Trail.

Many Sioux stayed in the Midwest, some moved further west in to the Rocky Mountain area and Montana.

** Three major divisions

  1. Eastern or Santee Sioux, last to leave traditional homelands near Lake Superior. Subgroups: Mdewakantonwan, Wahpekute, Sisseton and Wahpeton. Their descendants today live on Fort Totten Reservation in North Dakota and on Lake Traverse (Sisseton) and Flandreau Reservation in South Dakota, Santtee Reservation in Nebraska, Fort Peck Reservation in Montana and in small reservations in Minnesota.
  2. The Middle, or Wiciyela Sioux, Two groups: Yankton and Yanktonai. Today they are on the Yankton and Crow Creek Reservations in South Dakota and Standing Rock and Fort Totten Reservations in North Dakota and Fort Peck, Montana.
  3. Western or Teton Sioux the largest Sioux Division. Seven sub-bands: Oglala, Brule, Sans Arcs, Blackfeet, Minnekonjou, Two Kettle, and Hunkpapa. They live in South Dakota, on Pine Ridge, Rosebud, Lower Brule, Cheyenne River and Standing Rock Reservations.

Brief Timeline[edit | edit source]

  • 1600's Jesuit explorers
  • 1700's: Sioux were migrating westward to Missouri River and beyond. Pushed by the Chippewa and encroaching settlers
  • 1837: Ceeded land between the Saint Croix and Mississippi rivers
  • 1846: At the invitation of Chief Little Crow, Dr. Thomas S. Williamson came to Kaposia and established a school
  • 1851: Treaty at Fort Laramie
  • 1854: Removed to Lower Sioux or Redwood Reservation
  • 1854-55: Grattan Fight
  • 1857: Spirit Lake Massacre
  • 1862-64: Minnesota Uprising or Little Crow's War
  • 1866-68: Bozeman Trail or Red Cloud's War
  • 1876-77: War for the Black Hills or Sitting Bull's and Crazy Horse's War
  • 1890: Wounded Knee
  • 1850-1890: Sioux Wars
  • 1892: Great Sioux Reservation Census FHL film 576860

Additional References to the History of the Tribe[edit | edit source]

Leaders: Red Cloud, Red Fox, Sitting Bull, Crazy Horse[edit | edit source]

Tribal Headquarters[edit | edit source]

Agencies[edit | edit source]

Upper Missouri Agency

Upper Platte Agency

Cheyenne River Agency

Crow Creek Agency

Lower Brule Agency

Lower Sioux Agency - Thomas Galbraith was agent at the time of the Dakota War of 1862.

Upper Sioux Agency

Grand River Indian Agency (North Dakota)

Grand River Indian Agency (South Dakota)

Standing Rock Agency

Whetstone Agency

Superintendencies[edit | edit source]

St. Louis Superintendency

Central Superintendency

Dakota Superintendency

Northern Superintendency

Bands and Groups of the Sioux Tribe and Their Reservations/Localities[edit | edit source]

The term or designation of Sioux Indians is a very broad categorization of several bands and/or federally recognized tribes within the group so named. For the most part, they have historically lived in the Northern Plains area, and have ranged from the Canadian border and even into Canada on the north to Oklahoma on the south, and from Wyoming and Montana on the west to the Mississippi River and beyond on the east. Some of the tribes, bands, or groups of Sioux, with their colonies or reservations,include:

Santee Sioux; subbands: Mdewakantonwan, Wahpekute, Sisseton and Wahpeton [Fort Totten Reservation in North Dakota, Lake Traverse and Flandreau Reservations in South Dakota, Santee Reservation in Nebraska, Fort Peck Reservation in Montana and in Minnesota]

Wiciyela Sioux; subgroups Yankton and Yanktonai.Yankton and Crow Creek Reservations in South Dakota, Standing Rock an Fort Totten Reservations in North Dakota,and Fort Peck Reservation in Montana.]

Teton Sioux; seven subbands: Oglala, Brule, Sans Arcs, Blackfeet, Minnekonjou, Two Kettle and Hunkpapa.[Pine Ridge, Rosebud, Lower Brule, Cheyenne River and Standing Rock Reservations in South Dakota]

Records[edit | edit source]

The majority of records of individuals were those created by the agencies. Some records may be available to tribal members through the tribal headquarters.They were (and are) the local office of the Bureau of Indian Affairs, and were charged with maintaining records of the activities of those under their responsibility. Among these records are:

Correspondence and Census[edit | edit source]

Tribe Agency Location of Original Records

Pre-1880 Correspondence

M234 RG 75 -- 962 Rolls

Roll Number




Post-1885 Census

M595 RG 75 -- 692 Rolls

Roll Number

FHL Film Number
Sioux Fort Peck Agency, 1885-1939 Seattle - - 11, 150-60 FHL Films 576840-576849
Brule Sioux Lower Brule/Whetstone (Rosebud), 1875-1966 Washington D.C. and Kansas City 401, 925-27 - 427-30 FHL Films 581421-581440
Brule Sioux Spotted Tail (Rosebud),Grand River, 1875-1966 Washington D.C. and Kansas City 840-45, 305-06 - 427-45 FHL Film 581421-581440
Cuthead Sioux Upper Missouri Agency, 1824-66 Washington D.C. 883-88 - - -
Lower Brule Sioux

Upper Missouri Agency to 1874

Washington D.C. 883-88 - - -
Lower Brule Sioux Crow Creek Agency, 1874-1955 Washington D.C. and Kansas City 249 - 87-92 FHL Films 575771-575784
Lower Brule Sioux Lower Brule Agency, 1875-76 Washington D.C. and Kansas City 401 - 87-92, 252 FHL Films 575771-575784
Mdewakanton Sioux Birch Colley (Pipestone), 1895-1954 Kansas City - 2, 35, 385 FHL Films 573848 and 580764
Miniconjou Sioux Upper Missouri and Upper Platte, 1824-74 Washington D.C. 883-96 - - -
Miniconjou Sioux Cheyenne River Agency, 1869-1956 Kansas City - - - FHL Films 574192-574199
Oglala Sioux Upper Missouri/Upper Platte, 1824-74 Washington D.C. Roll 883-96 - - -
Oglala Sioux Red Cloud / Whetstone/ Spotted Tail, 1871-80 Washington D.C. Rolls 715-26, 925-27, 840-45 - - -
Oglala Sioux Grand River (Standing Rock)1871-1957 Washington D.C. and Kansas City Rolls 305-06 - _ FHL Films 583006-583022
Oglala Sioux Pine Ridge Agency, 1913-1943 with gaps Kansas City - - Rolls 370-84 FHL Films 580741-580763
Sioux,Oglala Pine Ridge Agency, 1886-1943 Washington D.C. and Kansas City - - Rolls 361-84 FHL Films 580741-580763
Santee Sioux Saint Peters Agency, to 1870 Washington D.C. Rolls 757066 - - -
Santee Sioux Santee Sioux Agency,1871-76 Washington D.C. and Kansas City Rolls 768-69 - Rolls 474-77 FHL Films 581485-581487
Santee Sioux Nebraska Agencies, 1876-80 Washington D.C. Rolls 518-29 - - -
Santee Sioux Flandreau School, 1873-1951 Washington D.C. and Kansas City Roll 285 - Rolls 105-06 -
Santee Sioux Winnebago and Yankton, 1867-1955 Washington D.C. and Kansas CIty Rolls 930-47, 959-62 - Rolls 660-70, 684-88 FHL Films 583122-583129 and FHL Films 583139-583147
Sioux, Mississippi Saint Peters Agency,1824-70 Washington D.C. Rolls 756-66 - -
Sioux, Mississippi Prairie du Chien and Winnegabo Agencies Washington D.C. and Kansas City Rolls 695-702, 930-47 - - -
Sioux, Missouri/Platte River Upper Missouri Agency, 1824-74 Washington D.C. Rolls 883-88 - - -
Sioux, Missouri/Platte River Upper Platte Agency, 1846-70 Washington D.C. Rolls 889-96 - - -
Sioux, Missouri/ Platte River Yankton Agency, 1859-76 Washington D.C. Rolls 959-62 - - FHL Films 583139-583147
Sioux, Missouri/Platte River Upper Arkansas Agency, 1855-74 Washington D.C. Rolls 878-82 - - -
Sioux, Missouri/Platte River Whetstone Agency, 1871-74 Washington D.C. Rolls 925-27 - - -
Sioux, Missouri/Platte River SpottedTail Agency, 1875-80 Washington D.C. Rolls 840-45 - - -
Sioux, Missouri/ Platte River Red Cloud Agency, 1871-80 Washington D.C. Rolls 715-26 - - -
Sioux, Missouri/Platte River Grand River Agency, 1871-75 Washington D.C. Rolls 305-06 - - -
Sioux, Missouri/Platte River Standing Rock Agency, 1871-80 Washington D.C. Rolls 846-52 - - FHL Films 583006-583002
Sioux, Missouri/Platte River Crow Creek Agency, 1871-76 Washington D.C. Roll 249 - - FHL Films 575779-575784
Sioux, Missouri/Platte River Lower Brule Agency, 1875-76 Washington D.C. 401 - - FHL Films 571779-571781
Sioux-Fort Totten Fort Totten Agency, 1875-1950 Kansas City - - Rolls 161-64 FHL Films 576850-576853
Sioux-Cheyenne River Cheyenne River Agency, 1869-1956 Washington D.C. and Kansas City - - Rolls 33-40 FHL Films 574192-574199
Sioux-Spotted Tail Rosebud Agency, 1860-1966 Kansas City and Denver - - 427-45 FHL Films 581421-581440
Sioux-Standing Rock Standing Rock Agency, 1885-1939 Washington D.C. and Kansas City Rolls 845-52 - 547-63 FHL Films 583006-583022
Sioux-Sisseton Saint Peters Agency, 1824-70 Washington D.C. 756-66 - Rolls 507-17 -
Sioux-Sisseton Devil's Lake Agency, 1871-80 Washington D.C. and Kansas City 280-84 - - -
Sioux-Sisseton Devil's Lake Agency, 1885-90, 1892-1905 Washington D.C. and Kansas City - - 94-97 -
Sioux-Sisseton Sisseton Agency, 1886-1929 with gaps Kansas City - - 507-17 FHL Film 581882-581891
Wahkepute Sioux SEE Sisseton Sioux - - - - -

Treaties[edit | edit source]

During the latter part of the 18th Century and most of the 19th Century, treaties were negotiated between the federal government and individual Indian tribes. The treaties provide helpful information about the history of the tribe, but usually only include the names of those persons who signed the treaty. For more information about treaties, click here.

Treaties to which the Sioux Indians were a part were:

  • 1805 September 23, unratified
  • 1815 June 19, with the Sioux of The Lakes
  • 1815 July 19, with the Sioux of St. Peter's River
  • 1815 July 19, with the Yakton Sioux
  • 1816 June 1, at St. Louis
  • 1825, with the Huknpapa Band of Sioux
  • 1825 June 22, at Fort Look Out, with the Teton, Yancton, and Yanctonies bands of Sioux.
  • 1830 July 15, at Prairie du Chien
  • 1836 September 10, land ceded to the United States
  • 1836 October 15, at Bellevue
  • 1836 November 30, at St. Peters, with Wahpaakootah, Susseton, and Upper Medawakanton tribes of Sioux
  • 1837 September 29, at Washington,
  • 1837 October 21, at Washington
  • 1851 July 23
  • 1851 August 5, at Mendota
  • 1851 September 17, at Fort Laramie
  • 1858 June 19, with Mendawakanton and Wahpahoota bands of Sioux
  • 1858 June 19, Sisseeton and Wahpaton Bands of the Dakota or Sioux
  • 1858 April 19, with the Yankton Sioux
  • 1865 October 10, at Fort Sully
  • 1865 October 14, at Fort Sully
  • 1865 October 19, at Fort Sully
  • 1865 October 20, at Fort Sully
  • 1865 October 20, with the Hunkpapa Band
  • 1865 October 20, at Fort Sully
  • 1865 October 28,
  • 1865 October 28, at Fort Sully
  • 1867 February 19
  • 1868 April 29, at Fort Laramie
  • 1872 September 20, Sisseton and Wahpeton Bands - unratified
  • 1873 May 2, Lac Traverse Agency, Dakota Territory
  • 1876: Battle of the Little Big Horn, Custer's Last Stand
  • 1882-83 October 17 1882-January 3, 1883 - unratified
  • 1890: Wounded Knee Massacre 7th Cavalry intercepted Chief Big Foot near Wounded Knee Creek

Vital Records[edit | edit source]

Prior to the Indian Reorganization Act, the Bureau of Indian Affairs, through their agencies, may have recorded some vital events. Some were recorded on health forms, such as the "Sanitary Record of Sick, Injured, Births, Deaths, etc." Others were recorded as supplements to the "Indian Census Rolls." Some were included in the unindexed reports and other correspondence of the Bureau of Indian Affairs.

Some vital records for the Sioux Indians include:

Important Websites[edit | edit source]

Wikipedia has more about this subject: Lakota people

References[edit | edit source]

Bibliography[edit | edit source]

Sioux[edit | edit source]

  • Carlson, Paul H. The Plains Indians. College Station, Texas: Texas A&M University Press, c1998. FHL Book 970.1 C197p
  • Denig, Edwin Thompson. Five Indian Tribes of the Upper Missouri: Sioux, Arickaras, Assiniboines, Crees, Crows. Norman, Oklahoma: University of Oklahoma Press, c1981. The Civilization of American Indian Series:059. FHL Book 970.1 D415f.

General[edit | edit source]