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Leech Lake Reservation (Za-ga Ga-mi-chi Do-dem or Leech Lake Nation)
This Reservation is largest Chippewa only Reservation in United States. They claim Leech Lake Reservation only owns a small percentage of their nation. Three large lakes within their nation, cover nearly 300,000 acres. They claim that over 560,000 acres is owned by Federal Government. However, Federal Government holds Reservation land in trust for Indian Nations, which means their nations land that covers over 560,00 acres, is in fact owned by Leech Lake Nation. Zaga Gamichi Dodem means Leech Lake Nation. Ojibwa word for leech is zagaskwadjime. However, they (Ojibway People) don't know they have to use zagaskadjime as it was meant. Regular word for leech then plural, then past tense and then present tense. Za-ga is their actual word for leech. Za-ga-skwad is plural. Za-ga-skwad-ji is past tense. Za-ga-skwad-ji-me is present tense. Ojibwa word for big is mi-chi. Read this carefully. Ga-mi-chi. It means large lake. Zagaigan is not Ojibway word for lake. It is an Ojibway word for human made lake or Reservoir. Any Ojibway word with "i-gan" at it's end, represents an object made by humans. It's obvious that Ojibway's from old times (before whites invaded) made lakes to grow wild rice. Thus, why they had "za-ga-i-gan" as a word for lake. Ojibway's in Florida, flooded much of Florida to grow wild rice. Wild Rice grew abundantly in Florida. Today, it may be different. I do know from old books that wild rice grew abunantly in Florida.
Leech Lake Reservation covers 1,309.9 sq. mi. or 3,392.6 sq. km. or 838,336 acres or 339,262 hectares. Actually it is much larger and includes both Red Lake Reservation and White Earth Reservation. They like you thinking they own only around 40,000 acres. However, that is incorrect. Only a small part of extreme western part of Leech Lake Nation, is not within Chippewa National Forest. Remaining land area of their nation, is within Chippewa National Forest. Don't be fooled by people who tell you, their nation owns less than 5% of their land. American leaders first signed a treaty with Ojibway leaders of Leech Lake Nation, before establishing Chippewa National Forest which is, of course, Leech Lake Reservation. However, chief Hole in the Day did not surrender which means Red Lake Reservation and White Earth Reservation are yet a part of Leech Lake Nation.
Located in northern Minnesota, Leech Lake Reservation has a disturbingly troubled past. It was an important location for their military and police totem (bear clan or noka or Nakawe), who used that location to build up their military strength in order to force their east then west after they commenced losing to whites in late 18th century. They followed prophecy and migrated west. This Reservation was established after 1862s Minnesota Indian War. Ojibway's of this Reservation are known as Pillagers. According to William W. Warren, Ojibway Soldiers were ill tempered and that was very evident during late 1862 and in 1898.
1862 Minnesota War
During 1862s Minnesota Indian War, Chippewa's commenced a western exodus and also an exodus north. That war was fought to open up Red River Valley of Manitoba, Minnesota, and North Dakota to white settlement. Ojibwa soldiers attacked that part of Red River Colony, between what is now Grand Forks, North Dakota and Canada's border. They killed up to 1,000 whites. They also attacked whites living south or in south Minnesota but their real war was for control of that portion of Red River Colony in United States. In August of 1862, Ojibwa leaders met with American representatives near what is now Fargo, North Dakota. During those negotiations, Ojibwa leaders abruptly ended negotiations then left. Afterwards, they sent their soldiers out to attack whites living in Red River Colony. Ojibwa's had ruled Red River Colony since War of 1812. Chief Hole in the Day or ogima Bug-o-nay-gee-shig, was probably their principle leader during that 1862 conflict. However, chief Little Shell II, was also involved in that conflict. However, chief Hole in the Day claimed he was git-chi o-gi-ma of Ojibwa Nation. Both may have been leaders of Ojibwa Districts however. Chief Hole in the Day, may have lived up to 1916. They claim he was assassinated in 1867 but that may be false. Chief Hole in the Day who led that 1898 Rebellion at Leech Lake, was probably that same famous chief Hole in the Day who was born between 1825 and 1830. He was about same age as chief Little Shell II.
A series of battles were fought in North Dakota in 1863 and in 1864. They occurred directly west of Fargo, North Dakota. Fargo is about 30 to 35 miles west of White Earth Reservation. One of those battles which was most deadly, was fought in what is now Dickey County, North Dakota which borders South Dakota. Battle of Whitestone Hill was fought on September 3-5, 1863. Indian casualties were very heavy in that battle. Around 200 Chippewa's were killed and wounded and another 156 were captured. It wasn't Lakota who were attacked. Father Belcourt clearly stated in an 1849 letter to Major Woods, that Pembina Chippewa District extended 400 miles from north to south, from Canadian border. It extended over 500 miles from east to west, from what is now Minnesota-North Dakota border. These battles were fought in Chippewa Territory.
Three battles had been fought east of what is now Bismarck, North Dakota region. On July 24, 1863, a battle was fought in what is now Kidder County, North Dakota. Around 4,000 Chippewa's were living in that area, east of Bismarck. Battle of Big Mound was minor. Only a few casualties occurred. On July 26, 1863, another battle was fought in that same region which was indecisive. Battle of Dead Buffalo Lake was a bit more deadly than Battle of Big Mound. Chippewa soldiers were capable of defending themselves against over 2,000 white soldiers who were armed with superior weapons. Dead Buffalo Lake region was important to Pembina Chippewa's. That lake is located 2.6 miles north of what is now Dawson, North Dakota and 48 miles east of Bismarck.
On July 28, 1863, Battle of Stony Lake was fought in what is now Burleigh County, North Dakota. It was another minor battle. However, that September 3-5, 1863 Battle of Whitestone Hill, drove Chippewa's from southeastern North Dakota. They fled west to Montana. North of Fargo, it remained dangerous until after 1863s Old Crossing Treaty was ratified in 1864.
Many large and small lakes are located in that region which were once a part of ancient Lake Agassiz. Lake Agassiz was obviously once connected to those larger Great Lakes which were once a part of Hudson Bay. After that vast lake evaporated into what is left now, Chippewa's from Montana forced their way east during 16th century, to support Lake Superior Chippewa's in wars against white invaders. Ojibway authors from 19th century, wrote about Chippewa's forcing their way east, from a western location (Montana). 1832s Edinburgh Encyclopedia has greater detail about that ancient Ojibway eastern migration. One group came up from southwest (possibly Kansas-Oklahoma region) of those Great Lakes and settled in Ohio Valley then forced their way to North America's Atlantic Coast. They were Leni Lenape. Thus, Ojibway's consider them grandfathers. Shortly after, another large group of Ojibway's from Alberta and Montana, forced their way east also. They are known as Assiniboine. In Ojibway, it is written as "As-sin-i-bwan." It means "Stony Ojibwa's. Ojibway word for stony is "a-si-ni." Ojibway plural is "n." Add "n" to bwa from Oji-bwa, you get "bwan." Correct translation is Iron Confederation. According to Edinburgh Encyclopedia they settled along St. Lawrence River in what is now Quebec and New York State. We know when this happened. In early part of 16th century, white explorers found non Algonquins living along St. Lawrence River. When they returned between 1600-1605, they found Algonquin's living along St. Lawrence River. So some time during mid 16th century, Ojibway Soldiers brought St. Lawrence River Valley under Ojibway control. They are also known as "As-sin-i-ca" or Seneca. Dakota's and Iroquois are really Ojibwa's. They were brutal with any Indian Tribes who helped whites steal land.
These Chippewa's had originally lived in that area of Minnesota where White Earth Reservation is and south of same Reservation, and west and south of Fargo. Most may have fled but many remained. Those who fled reached Montana. Many also continued that exodus into Idaho, Oregon, and Washington. Kootenai of Flathead Reservation are probably descendants of these Anishinabe people who commenced that 1863-1864 exodus. Some Kootenai still know they came from regions around those Great Lakes, especially Michigan. Their canoes are obviously Chippewa.
On July 28-29, 1864, United States military sent a force of over 4,000 soldiers to a large Chippewa settlement in what is now Dunn County, North Dakota. A force of 6,000 to 7,000 Chippewa Soldiers met and battled them. United States Soldiers was forced to withdraw from that battle. They may have inflicted heavy casualties on Oijway Soldiers but could not force them to abandon their settlements. Ojibway casualties were between 31 and 150 killed and wounded. American Soldiers were lured into another battle on August 7-9, 1864 in what is now Golden Valley County, North Dakota which borders Montana. Ojibway Soldiers used that regions rugged terrain to their advantage and using mainly bows and arrows, repeatedly attacked white soldiers. Knowing that Ojibway Soldiers held advantage, it forced white soldiers to retreat from that area. Western North Dakota remained under Ojibway control, as did that area east of Bismarck. In 1866, United States Soldiers commenced to build Fort Buford and eventually established 900 sq. mi. Fort Buford Military Reservation. Most was located in North Dakota, with remainder of it was located in Montana. Ojibway soldiers attacked Fort Buford in 1867 and killed all American soldiers in that fort. Ojibway casualties were very heavy however. American Soldiers built another fort however and named it Fort Buford again. By 1867, that war that commenced in Minnesota in 1862, had merged with Montana's Mullan Road War and escalated, especially between Fort Benton and Helena. Ojibway casualties were 10 to 20 times higher than that of their white enemies. White Soldiers had repeating rifles, revolvers and gatlin guns. Most Ojibway Soldiers used bows and arrows.
What is now White Clay (earth) Reservation, was Pem-bin-na and Pillager Chippewa land. As part of corrupted dealings whites indulged in (that 1889 Nelson Act), they forced several thousand Chippewa's from Montana and North Dakota, to relocate to White Earth Reservation. Western part of White Clay Reservation had abundant agriculture land. Perfect for land allotments. However, most of White Clay Reservation was and still is, a land covered by many lakes and a lush forest. Thus, why most were relocated to White Clay Reservation (aka White Earth Reservation). According to a website, a 1920 census reported that White Earth Reservations Indian population was 6,659. 4,856 were Mississippi Chippewa's (those Chippewa's who lived on both sides of Mississippi River including from Mille Lacs), 1,218 were Pillager Chippewa's, 472 were Pembina (their population was possibly much larger), and 113 were Lake Superior Chippewa's (those Chippewa's who lived near Lake Superior shores).
White Earth Agency reported an Indian population of 4,719 in 1902. Their specific groups and 1902 populations are as follows: White Earth Mississippi Chippewa who were really Montana Ojibwa's who were Deported to White Earth Reservation (1,615); Gull Lake Mississippi Chippewa (340); Removal White Oak Point (Leech Lake Ojibwa's) Mississippi Chippewa (87); Removal Mille Lac Mississippi Chippewa who were really from Montana (323); non-removal Mille Lac Mississippi Chippewa who were really from Montana (870); Removal Leech Lake Pillager Chippewa (297); Cass Lake and Lake Winnebigoshish Chippewa (56); Otter Tail Pillager Chippewa (717); Removal Fond du Lac Chippewa (100); Pembina Chippewa (314).
By non-removal, it was stated that only 62 of Mille Lac Chippewa's had relocated to White Clay which is a lie. The Ojibwa's who lived at Mille Lacs, never left that area. An act of Congress on May 27, 1902, eventually led to all Mille Lac Chippewa's relocating to White Clay which is another white lie. It really dealt with Montana Ojibwa's being Deported to White Earth Reservation. A total of $40,000 was paid for those relocations. As for Gull Lake Mississippi and Otter Tail Pillager Chippewa's, a cover-up is in place. They are Chippewa's (Menominee and Winnebago) who were set aside large adjoining Reservations in 1840s. Another Reservation called Gull Lake Reservation, was later set aside for them after United States illegally stole their large adjoining Reservations. It is situated adjacent to their old Menominee and Winnebago Reservations (old Winnebago Reservation which was created on October 13, 1846).
Leech Lake Agency, which handled Red Lake Reservation affairs in 1902, reported an Indian population in 1901, of 3,346. Their specific groups and 1902 populations are as follows: Red Lake Reservation (1,304); Leech Lake Pillager Chippewa (848); Cass Lake and Lake Winnebigoshish Pillager Chippewa (435); and White Oak Point Mississippi Chippewa (630).
There was a population decline of 129. 1902 population was 3,217. Including Leech Lakes Pillagers population and White Earth Reservations Pillagers population, which includes Gull Lake Mississippi and Otter Tail Pillager Chippewa's, total Pillager Chippewa population was 3,410 in 1902. At White Clay Reservation, Leech Lake or Pillager Chippewa's population, was 1,497 in 1902. Population of Leech Lake Reservation in 1902, was 1,913. And Little Shell or Turtle Mountain Pembina Chippewa's, must be included as being Leech Lake or Pillager Chippewa's. As you know by now, White Clay Reservation was also set aside for Pillager Chippewa's who lived at those old Menominee and Winnebago adjoining Reservations. In 1864, 1867, and 1873 Americans enlarged Leech Lake Reservation to prevent war. White Earth Reservation was added to Leech Lake Reservation on March 19, 1867. Red Lake Reservation was added to Leech Lake Reservation on October 2, 1863. However, that is where whites are fooling you. That October 2, 1863 Old Crossing Treaty was ratified by United States, on April 21, 1864. Same day as that infamous 10¢ an Acre Treaty was ratified which was April 21, 1904, or 40 years after that October 2, 1863 Old Crossing Treaty was ratified on April 21, 1864. Vast Leech Lake Reservation which includes Red Lake Reservation and White Earth Reservation, was created on May 7, 1864.
Though this information may not be useful to you, it will help you to understand those events which took place during 1898s Rebellion. It was Chippewa's from White Clay Reservation who joined Chippewa's from Leech Lake Reservation, who fought in 1898s Rebellion. Many of Minnesota's Ojibwa's who fought in 1898s Rebellion, fled up to Ontario and Manitoba. Those who were captured, were probably relocated to Navajo Reservation where land was added to Navajo Reservation in 1900 or to Florida.
The 1898 Curtis & Nelson Acts
In October of 1898, ogima Bugonaygishig led an Ojibway Rebellion in northern Minnesota. This was probably a part of 1898s Spanish-American War. What followed saved Minnesota's Chippewa Reservations. Nelson Act of 1889, eradicated all Chippewa Reservations except Red Lake Reservation and a tiny part of White Clay Reservation. United States waited until 1898 to eradicate those Reservations. In 1898, United States passed that illicit Curtis Act and Nelson Act. Chief Hole in the Day's War, forced United States to restore those Reservations. However, vast Leech Lake Reservation was illegally fragmented into Minnesota's Ojibway Reservations of today. More about chief Hole in the Day's War is below.
In October of 1898, chief Hole in the Day led an Ojibway Rebellion in northern Minnesota. It was probably a part of 1898s Spanish-American War. What followed saved Minnesota's Chippewa Reservations. 1898's Nelson Act and Curtis Act, eradicated all Chippewa Reservations, except Red Lake Reservation and a tiny part of White Earth Reservation. Leech Lake Reservation was actually eradicated. Chief Hole in the Day's War forced United States to restore those Reservations.
After 1898s Rebellion, a delegation of Leech Lake Chippewa's visited Washington D.C. to negotiate with American leaders. Chippewa National Forest was established in 1908. However, this is according to historians, in 1900 a Minnesota woman named Maria Sanford, who was a member of "Minnesota Federation of Womens Clubs," decided that something must be done about 1889s Nelson Act to protect Minnesota's remaining forests, especially at Leech Lake Reservation. We can read between lines! Only one reason exists for establishment of Chippewa National Forest, and that was to prevent war from continuing, after October 5, 1898s Battle of Sugar Point ended.
What really occurred was negotiations were initiated between ogimak from Leech Lake Reservation and representatives from government of United States, after October 5, 1898s Battle of Sugar Point. Both sides didn't just walk off after that battle. There was a feeling of war and United States leaders needed to calm fear white settlers were under, after news of that Ojibway victory over American Soldiers in 1898s Battle of Sugar Point, was learned of by whites of northern Minnesota.
Negotiations commenced in probably late 1898 and continued on for quite sometime. In all probability, ogimak from Leech Lake Reservation and possibly nearby White Earth Reservation, and United States Representatives, reached an agreement by 1900, in which a new Leech Lake Reservation was created. Of course, that new Leech Lake Reservation is Chippewa National Forest but could possibly include what is now Paul Bunyan State Forest, Two Inlets State Forest, and Itasca State Park. Leech Lake Reservation and White Earth Reservation, may actually be connected.
Chippewa's of Leech Lake Reservation have forgotten about their new Reservation which is known as Chippewa National Forest. That probably occurred a decade or two after Chippewa National Forest was established, or soon after death of ogima Bugonaygishig. United States probably bribed Anishinabe leaders but we can read between lines! Creation of Chippewa National Forest did do as all had wanted. Leech Lake and probably White Earth Reservation ogimak, were content with that agreement reached with United States, and fears of white settlers diminished. Chief Hole in the Day and other Ojibway leaders, refused to surrender and cede vast Leech Lake Reservation which means it's still intact.
After new Leech Lake Reservation was established, size of Leech Lake Reservation doubled to 2,500 sq. mi. or 1.6 million acres. In early 1890s, whites rampaged through Leech Lake Reservations forests and refused to respect rights of Chippewa's of Leech Lake Reservation. Chief Hole in the Day was just one of many Ojibway ogimak who were outraged about that deliberate destruction of their Reservations forests and mistreatment native Chippewa's were receiving from whites.
Before chief Hole in the Day took over, another Chippewa leader was organizing for a possible rebellion. American leaders hired Indians to assassinate him. By summer of 1898, a feeling of rebellion was growing at Leech Lake Reservation and Americans knew it. They were anticipating trouble and that occurred on October 5, 1898.
Demographics of the Leech Lake Reservation
Covers 1.6 million acres or 2,500 sq. mi. (864,158 acres before 1898)
Total Population: 10,025
Indian Population: 4,561
Hispanic: 144 - Hispanic population is corrupted as usual. Mexicans are predominantly descended from the Native Americans who lived in the eastern part of the United States. The whites have forced them to lose their tribal identities.
Besides the 4,561 Anishinabek living on Leech Lake Reservation, there are over 4,000 other off-Reservation Anishinabek who are citizens of this Reservation. The Leech Lake Reservation including the lakes, supposedly covers 838,400 acres, or 339,288 hectares or 1,310 sq. mi. or 3,393 sq. km. However, you would be wise to accept the true size of Leech Lake Reservation at 2,500 sq. mi or 1.6 million acres. Average household size on the Leech Lake Reservation is 3.0. However, when dealing with the white average household size and Anishinabe average household size, there is obviously a difference. The Anishinabe average household size is probably between 3.5 and 8.0 persons per household. Below is a list of the settlements on this Reservation. Most are written using Ojibwa words. The Ojibwa word for lake is probably ga-mi. Za-ga-i-gan is also used. The Ojibwa word for little are Zes and Ah-ga-sta. In some dialects, it's Ah-ga-sa. Both can be used for either animate and inanimate. A few may have predominantly white populations. I don't know so i included them.
Agency Bay (O-gi-ma-mig Wi-kwed)
Big Lake (Kit-chay Ga-mi)
Black Duck (Ma-ka-day She-sheb)
Lake Boy or Boy Lake (Ga-mi Na-bay-zes)
Breezy Point (No-din-win Nay-yah-shay)
Cass Lake (Cass Ga-mi)
Cass River (Cass Sip-pi)
Drewery Lake (Drewery Ga-mi)
East Ball Club
East Little Wolf (Wa-bun Ma-hi-ga-noonse)
Lake East Mission (Ga-mi Wa-bun Mission)
Flora Lake (Flora Ga-mi)
Jackson Village (Jackson O-de-na)
Kego Lake (Ke-gog Ga-mi)
Lake Little Moss (Ga-mi Ah-ga-sta Ah-ta-gib)
Lake Little Turtle (Ga-mi Ah-ga-sta Mic-cah-noc)
Lake Little Wolf (Ga-mi Ah-ga-sta Ma-hi-gan)
Lost Lake (Ah-nog Ga-mi)
Lake Luck or Luck Lake (Ga-mi Sha-win-da-gos)
Lake Mission (Ga-mi Mission)
North Cass Lake (Gi-way-din Cass Ga-mi)
North Little Wolf (Gi-way-din Ma-hi-ga-noonse)
Portage North or North Portage (On-i-gum Gi-way-din)
Oak Point (Mi-tig-oh-mizh Nay-yah-shay)
Lake Moss or Moss Lake (Ga-mi Ah-ta-gib)
Turtle River (Mic-cah-noc Sip-pi)
Ryan Village (Ryan O-de-na)
South Cass Lake (Shaw-an Cass Ga-mi)
Lake South Mission (Ga-mi Shaw-an Mission)
Squaw Lake (Kway Ga-mi)
Sugar Maple (Si-si-ba-kwat In-ni-na-tig)
Sugar Point (Si-si-ba-kwat Nay-yah-shay)
Town Lake (O-de-na Ga-mi)
West Ball Club
Wood Acres (Mi-tig Di-ba-i-gans)