Indians of Illinois

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See Indians of the United States and Their Records for suggestions on how to research American Indian ancestry.

Tribes and Bands of Illinois

The most prominent Indian tribes in Illinois were the Illinois, Miami, Winnebago, Fox and Sacs (Sauk), Kickapoo, and Pottawatomie tribes. The Illinois Indians were composed of five subdivisions including Kaskaskias, Cahokias, Tamaroas, Peorias, and Metchigamis. Most of these tribes were eliminated from Illinois by about the mid-nineteenth century either through warfare or resettlement to other territories by the federal government.

The following list of tribes is compiled from Hodge's Handbook of American Indians North of Mexico[1] and Swanton's The Indian Tribes of North America.[2]

Chippewa, Cahokia, Delaware, Foxes, Illinois, Illiniwek, Iroquois, Kaskaskia, Kickapoo, Michigamea, Miami, Moingwena, Ottawa, Peoria, Piankeshaw, Potawatomi, Sac and Fox, Sauk, Shawnee, Tamaroa, Winnebago, Wyandot

Reservations

As identified in the National Atlas of the United States of America, there are no current federally-recognized reservations in Illinois.

Agencies of the Bureau of Indian Affairs

Chicago Agency Prairie du Chein Agency 1824-1842

References

  1. Hodge, Frederick Webb. Handbook of American Indians North of Mexico. Washington D.C.: Smithsonian Institution, Bureau of Ethnology, Bulletin #30 1907.
  2. Swanton, John R. The Indian Tribes of North America. Smithsonian Institution Bureau of Ethnology, Bulletin #145.
  • Hill, Edward E. The Office of Indian Afffairs, 1824-1880: Historical Sketches. Clearwater Publishing Co., Inc., 1974.
  • Hodge, Frederick Webb. Handbook of American Indians North of Mexico. Washington D.C.: Smithsonian Institution, Bureau of Ethnology, Bulletin #30 1907.
  • Swanton, John R. The Indian Tribes of North America. Smithsonian Institution Bureau of Ethnology, Bulletin #145

Family History Library

Additional sources on specific tribes can be found in the Family History Library Catalog by using a Subject Search (on the microfiche catalog only) under the name of the tribe, for example:

  • FOX INDIANS
  • MIAMI INDIANS
  • SAUK INDIANS

and under the subject:

INDIANS OF NORTH AMERICA- ILLINOIS.

Other sources can be found in the Family History Library Catalog by using a Place Search under:

ILLINOIS- NATIVE RACES

The following references may be helpful for those searching for American Indians in Illinois:

  • Beckwith, Hiram Williams. The Illinois and Indiana Indians. 1884. Reprint, New York, New York: Arno Press, 1975. (Family History Library book 970.1 B389i; and fiche 6087719.) This book gives histories of the tribes in Illinois.
  • Tregillis, Helen Cox. The Indians of Illinois: A History and Genealogy. [Decorah, Iowa: Anundsen Publishing], 1983. (Family History Library book 970.1 T716; fiche 6088745.) In addition to histories of the tribes, this source contains biographies of prominent Illinois Indians and a bibliography of sources.
  • The Lyman Copeland Draper Collection which includes:
Chief Joseph Brant papers (Family History Library film 889137-889144)
Tecumseh Papers, (Shawnee Chief) 1768-1823 (Family History Library film 889237-889238)

See Also:

Illinois-History for a calendar of events

Illinois-Military for a list of forts