Tracking the Land: Ojibwe Land Tenure and Acquisition at Grand Portage and Leech Lake

Persistent Link:
http://hdl.handle.net/10150/195391
Title:
Tracking the Land: Ojibwe Land Tenure and Acquisition at Grand Portage and Leech Lake
Author:
Carpenter, Leah J.
Issue Date:
2008
Publisher:
The University of Arizona.
Rights:
Copyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
Abstract:
This case study examines the land tenure histories of the Grand Portage and Leech Lake Bands of Ojibwe to determine how historical events inform their contemporary land acquisition strategies. The standardized federal Indian policy time periods frames this effort to track the amount of reservation land held in Ojibwe trust ownership over time while analyzing the local impact of those policies upon land tenure and acquisition. The Grand Portage and Leech Lake Bands are members of the confederated Minnesota Chippewa Tribe, and this Band-level unit of analysis illuminates variations in land tenure patterns and acquisition strategies experienced within a common tribal identity. The Grand Portage Band has been remarkably successful and over 80% of that territory is under Ojibwe trust ownership, while only 5% of the Leech Lake Reservation is in Ojibwe trust ownership. The Grand Portage Band has utilized conventional and creative strategies for land acquisition. For example, the Band secured an expansion of their reservation boundary in 1982, and later acquired the Grand Portage State Park. The Leech Lake Band has experienced a harsher land tenure history as their reservation lands have been, and remain, a much more contested territory. The Chippewa National Forest was superimposed upon that reservation territory, which has effectively created a federal monopoly on land ownership and which serves as a major obstacle to effective land acquisition by the Leech Lake Band today. Other obstacles include bureaucratic inertia and state and local opposition.The emergent tribal land acquisition strategies are land purchases, as well as the purchase of fractionated trust ownership interests, negotiations with local and state governments for land exchanges, the transfer of federal "surplus lands," and pursuit of special legislation or executive orders. Furthermore, Indian land tenure and acquisition remains an important aspect of the contemporary federal trust responsibility, although weakened in practice. The federal trust responsibility must be revitalized in order to become an effective method for tribal land acquisition. The Indian land tenure reality today is that most tribes endure insufficient and inadequate tribal territories as a result of federal Indian policies, which has prompted many to prioritize land acquisition.
Type:
text; Electronic Dissertation
Keywords:
Indian Land Tenure; Federal Indian Policy
Degree Name:
PhD
Degree Level:
doctoral
Degree Program:
American Indian Studies; Graduate College
Degree Grantor:
University of Arizona
Committee Chair:
Parezo, Nancy

Full metadata record

DC FieldValue Language
dc.language.isoENen_US
dc.titleTracking the Land: Ojibwe Land Tenure and Acquisition at Grand Portage and Leech Lakeen_US
dc.creatorCarpenter, Leah J.en_US
dc.contributor.authorCarpenter, Leah J.en_US
dc.date.issued2008en_US
dc.publisherThe University of Arizona.en_US
dc.rightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.en_US
dc.description.abstractThis case study examines the land tenure histories of the Grand Portage and Leech Lake Bands of Ojibwe to determine how historical events inform their contemporary land acquisition strategies. The standardized federal Indian policy time periods frames this effort to track the amount of reservation land held in Ojibwe trust ownership over time while analyzing the local impact of those policies upon land tenure and acquisition. The Grand Portage and Leech Lake Bands are members of the confederated Minnesota Chippewa Tribe, and this Band-level unit of analysis illuminates variations in land tenure patterns and acquisition strategies experienced within a common tribal identity. The Grand Portage Band has been remarkably successful and over 80% of that territory is under Ojibwe trust ownership, while only 5% of the Leech Lake Reservation is in Ojibwe trust ownership. The Grand Portage Band has utilized conventional and creative strategies for land acquisition. For example, the Band secured an expansion of their reservation boundary in 1982, and later acquired the Grand Portage State Park. The Leech Lake Band has experienced a harsher land tenure history as their reservation lands have been, and remain, a much more contested territory. The Chippewa National Forest was superimposed upon that reservation territory, which has effectively created a federal monopoly on land ownership and which serves as a major obstacle to effective land acquisition by the Leech Lake Band today. Other obstacles include bureaucratic inertia and state and local opposition.The emergent tribal land acquisition strategies are land purchases, as well as the purchase of fractionated trust ownership interests, negotiations with local and state governments for land exchanges, the transfer of federal "surplus lands," and pursuit of special legislation or executive orders. Furthermore, Indian land tenure and acquisition remains an important aspect of the contemporary federal trust responsibility, although weakened in practice. The federal trust responsibility must be revitalized in order to become an effective method for tribal land acquisition. The Indian land tenure reality today is that most tribes endure insufficient and inadequate tribal territories as a result of federal Indian policies, which has prompted many to prioritize land acquisition.en_US
dc.typetexten_US
dc.typeElectronic Dissertationen_US
dc.subjectIndian Land Tenureen_US
dc.subjectFederal Indian Policyen_US
thesis.degree.namePhDen_US
thesis.degree.leveldoctoralen_US
thesis.degree.disciplineAmerican Indian Studiesen_US
thesis.degree.disciplineGraduate Collegeen_US
thesis.degree.grantorUniversity of Arizonaen_US
dc.contributor.chairParezo, Nancyen_US
dc.contributor.committeememberLuna-Firebaugh, Eileenen_US
dc.contributor.committeememberLomawaima, K. Tsianinaen_US
dc.contributor.committeememberStauss, Josephen_US
dc.contributor.committeememberWilliams Jr., Roberten_US
dc.identifier.proquest2631en_US
dc.identifier.oclc659749620en_US
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