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Leech Lake Reservation (Za-ga-swaj-ji-may Za-ga-i-gan Ish-sko-ni-gan)

This Reservation is the largest Chippewa only Reservation in the United States. Of course, i included that only because of Chippewa National Forest. Located in northern Minnesota, the Leech Lake Reservation has a disturbingly troubled past. A map of Leech Lake Reservation (Chippewa National Forest) is below. It was an important location for the military and police totem (the Chippewa's) of the Algonquin Tribe, who used the location to build up their military strength in order to force their way out on to the plains of Canada and the United States. This Reservation was established after the 1862 Minnesota Indian War ended and not before. The Algonquin's of this Reservation are known as the Pillagers. According to William W. Warren, the soldiers of the Algonquin's were ill tempered and that was very evident during October of 1898.

The 1862 Minnesota War

During the 1862 Minnesota Indian War, the Chippewa's commenced an exodus to the west and to the north. The war was fought to open up the Red River Valley of Manitoba, Minnesota, and North Dakota to white settlement. A series of battles were fought in North Dakota in 1863 and in 1864. They occurred directly west of the Fargo, North Dakota region. Fargo is about 30 to 35 miles west of the White Earth Reservation. One of the battles, which was the most deadly, was fought in what is now Dickey County, North Dakota which borders South Dakota. The Battle of Whitestone Hill was fought on September 3-5, 1863. Indian casualties were very heavy in the battle. Around 200 Chippewa's were killed and wounded and another 156 were captured. It wasn't the Lakota who were attacked. Father Belcourt clearly stated in an 1849 letter to Major Woods, that the Pembina Chippewa District extended 400 miles from north to south, from the Canadian border. It extended over 500 miles from east to west, from the Leech Lake Reservation region. These battles were fought in Chippewa Territory.

Three battles had been fought east of what is now the 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 the area just east of the Bismarck region. The Battle of Big Mound was minor. Only a few casualties occurred. On July 26, 1863 another battle was fought in the same region which was indecisive. The Battle of Dead Buffalo Lake was a bit more deadly than the Battle of Big Mound. Chippewa soldiers were capable of defending themselves against the over 2,000 white soldiers who were armed with superior weapons. The Dead Buffalo Lake region was important to the Pembina Chippewa's. The lake is located 2.6 miles north of what is now Dawson, North Dakota and 48 miles east of Bismarck.

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 the Great Lakes which were once a part of Hudson Bay. After the vast lake evaporated into what is left now, the Chippewa's from the Montana region forced their way east during either the 16th or 17th century, to support the Lake Superior Chippewa's in the wars against the white invaders. Before them, however, the Lakota people had migrated down from the north. When the Montana Chippewa's made their way east they had to fight the Lakota. Ojibway authors from the 19th century wrote about the Chippewa's forcing their way to the east, from the west (Montana).

On July 28, 1863 the Battle of Stony Lake was fought in what is now Burleigh County, North Dakota. It was another minor battle. However, the September 3-5, 1863 Battle of Whitestone Hill, drove the Chippewa's from southeastern North Dakota. They fled to the west into Montana. North of the Fargo region remained dangerous until after the 1863 Old Crossing Treaty was ratified in 1864.

These Chippewa's had originally lived in the area of Minnesota where the White Earth Reservation is and to the south of the same Reservation, and west and south of the Fargo region. Most may have fled but many remained. Those who fled reached Montana. Many also continued the exodus into Idaho, Oregon, and Washington. The Kootenai of the Flathead Reservation are probably the descendants of these Anishinabe people who commenced the 1863-1864 exodus. Some of the Kootenai still know they came from the Great Lakes region. Their canoes are obviously Chippewa.

On July 28-29, 1864, the United States 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. The United States was forced to withdraw from the battle. They may have inflicted heavy casualties on the Chippewa soldiers but could not force them to abandon their settlements. Chippewa casualties were between 31 and 150 killed and wounded. The United States was lured into another battle on August 7-9, 1864 in what is now Golden Valley County, North Dakota which borders Montana. The Chippewa soldiers used the rugged terrain to their advantage and using mainly bows and arrows, repeatedly attacked the white soldiers. Knowing that the Chippewa's held the advantage, it forced the white soldiers to retreat from the area. Western North Dakota remained under Chippewa control, as did the area just east of the Bismarck region.

The Little Shell Pembina Chippewa Reservation

On March 3, 1873, the United States set aside a vast area of land in northern Minnesota for the Chippewa's. It may not show up in treaty documents but the Pembina Chippewa Reservation was in fact set aside. It connects the Bois Forte (Nett Lake), Leech Lake, Red Lake, and White Earth Reservations. The Chippewa's of northern Minnesota were still a major threat at the time and convinced the United States to set aside the huge Reservation. However, the United States had no intentions on honoring the treaty which set aside this Little Shell Pembina Chippewa Reservation. Ogima (chief) Little Shell II and other Chippewa leaders, reached a treaty agreement in early March of 1873 which created the vast Little Shell Pembina Chippewa Reservation of northern Minnesota. Per treaty agreements, the Chippewa's of central and eastern North Dakota, and eastern South Dakota, agreed to relocate to the new Chippewa Reservation. Not all Chippewa's relocated however. Most settled down to live where White Clay Reservation (aka White Earth Reservation) is. Commencing in 1889, the United States broke treaty. It commenced with the 1889 Nelson Act.

The Illegal 1889 Nelson Act

In 1889 (the 1889 Nelson Act), the government of the United States broke treaty promises and illegally opened up the Little Shell Pembina Chippewa Reservation to white settlement. Instead of honorably negotiating with the leaders of the Little Shell Pembina Chippewa Reservation, the United States instead illegally forced the individual Chippewa men of voting age to determine if the huge Little Shell Pembina Chippewa Reservation should have land allotments and the surplus land sold to the whites. Since the Chippewa men knew they stood to gain financially, they voted to accept the deal. It was fraudulent, which means the huge Little Shell Pembina Chippewa Reservation, is still intact. Most of the White Earth Reservation land allotments slipped from Indian ownership to non Indian ownership, after the huge Little Shell Pembina Chippewa Reservation was stolen. The western part of the Reservation was opened up to white settlement. After all the cowardly white deeds, only a small part of the northeastern part of the White Earth Reservation remained. Leech Lake Reservation and all other Minnesota Chippewa Reservations, except Red Lake Reservation, were eradicated.

The 1898 Rebellion

In October of 1898, ogima Bugonaygishig led a Chippewa Rebellion in northern Minnesota. This was probably a part of the 1898 Spanish-American War. What followed saved the Minnesota Chippewa Reservations. The 1898 Nelson Act and Curtis Act, eradicated all Chippewa Reservations, except the Red Lake Reservation and a tiny part of the White Earth Reservation. Leech Lake Reservation was actually eradicated. Ogima Bugonaygishig's War forced the United States to restore the Reservations. However, the huge Little Shell Pembina Chippewa Reservation was broken up into the Chippewa Minnesota Reservations of today.

After the 1898 Rebellion, a delegation of Leech Lake Chippewa's visited Washington D.C., to negotiate with the United States. 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 the journal "Minnesota Federation of Womens Clubs," decided that something must be done about the 1889 Nelson Act to protect the remaining forests in northern Minnesota, especially on the Leech Lake Reservation. We can read between the lines! Only one reason exists for the establishment of Chippewa National Forest, and that was to prevent the war from continuing, after the October 5, 1898 Battle of Sugar Point ended.

What really occurred was negotiations were initiated between the ogimak from Leech Lake Reservation and representatives from the government of the United States, after the October 5, 1898 Battle of Sugar Point. Both sides didn't just walk off after the battle. There was a feeling of war in the atmosphere and the United States needed to calm the fear the white settlers were under, after news of the Chippewa victory over the Americans in the Battle of Sugar Point, was learned of by the whites of northern Minnesota.

The negotiations commenced in probably late 1898 and continued on for quite sometime. In all probability, the ogimak from Leech Lake Reservation and possibly nearby White Earth Reservation, and the government of the United States, reached an agreement by 1900, in which a new Leech Lake Reservation was created. Of course, the new Leech Lake Reservation is the Chippewa National Forest but could possibly include what is now the Paul Bunyan State Forest, Two Inlets State Forest, and the Itasca State Park. Leech Lake Reservation and White Earth Reservation, may actually be connected.

The Chippewa's of the Leech Lake Reservation have forgotten about the 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 the death of Bugonaygishig. The United States probably bribed Anishinabe leaders but we can read between the lines! The creation of the Chippewa National Forest did do as all had wanted. Leech Lake and probably White Earth Reservation ogimak, were content with the agreement reached with the United States, and the fears of the white settlers diminished. Ogima Bugonaygishig refused to surrender and cede the vast Little Shell Pembina Chippewa Reservation which means it's still intact.

Supposedly the Leech Lake Reservation originally covered 1,310 sq. mi., or 838,400 acres. After the new Leech Lake Reservation was established, the size of Leech Lake Reservation doubled to 2,500 sq. mi., or 1.6 million acres. In the early 1890s, the whites rampaged through Leech Lake Reservations forests and refused to respect the rights of the Chippewa's of Leech Lake Reservation. Ogima Bugonaygishig was just one of many Chippewa ogimak who were outraged about the deliberate destruction of their Reservations forests and the mistreatment the native Chippewa's were receiving at the hands of the whites.

Before ogima Bugonaygishig rose to power, another Chippewa leader was organizing for a possible rebellion. The United States hired Indians to assassinate him. By the summer of 1898, a feeling of rebellion was growing on the Reservation and the Americans knew it. They were anticipating trouble and that occurred on October 5, 1898. Below is an 1897 picture of the hostile ogima Bugonaygishig and two other Chippewa leaders. You can tell by the weapons that they were very upset about the white problem.


The whites have been allowed to build numerous resorts (over 140 of them) throughout the Reservation, as well as to buy cottages. In fact, the owners of the resorts and cottages may actually make up the bulk of the white population of this Reservation. Exactly how much wealth the Anishinabe people of this Reservation are earning from the numerous resorts and cottage owners within their Reservation now, is not known but in 1988 it was over $8.5 million. Today, it is obviously considerably higher. However, the whites have the habit of not being honest in the business deals with Native Americans. In other words, any revenue generated by the resorts and cottage owners, is not all going directly to the Reservation.

It would not be surprising if most of the revenue generated by the resorts and cottage owners, flows into the hands of the whites. The revenue generated by the resorts and cottage owners which reaches the department of the Leech Lake Reservatiion which manages financial dealings, is used to benefit the citizens and land of the large Reservation. Leech Lake Reservation leaders are wisely using their lands resources but we know that the whites have a history of dishonesty. Leech Lake Reservation leaders must be allowed to freely tax at what rate they agree is approprate. The White Earth Reservation should also increase the number of resorts within their domain in order to generate revenue. Though the White Earth Reservation does not have the number of lakes Leech Lake Reservation does, what lakes are found within their domain are very attractive as sites for resorts. The number of resorts are the White Earth Reservation is no where near as many at Leech Lake Reservation.

Leech Lake Reservation is one of only 8 Anishinabe Reservations in the United States which is off limits. The others are: Fort Belknap, Menominee, Northern Cheyenne, Red Lake, Rocky Boy, Turtle Mountain, and Warm Springs in Oregon. The Chippewa's at Warm Springs are the Paiute. The whites forced them to lose their Anishinabe identity. I have included white towns in the Chippewa National Forest below. Some of them have large Chippewa populations. The large white population is the result of the events of the 1890s, when the Reservation was eradicated.

Alternate Government

We know the leaders of all Reserves and Reservations are employees of Canada and the United States. Since they are paid by the Canadian and the United States governments, we know they will do what the whites want. To defend ourselves from their evil intentions, it is mandatory that we form an alternate government which does not receive money from the Canadian and United States governments. Within each village you must organize a new government which will manage the affairs of the people. Establish a council for a select (not elected) group of men and women of your choice. Then form a financial corporation in which the citizens of the villages can deposit their money. To each community listed below, incorporate them so they are permitted by PCRFC which is a part of the Chippewa Little Shell Hill Reservation (aka Turtle Mountain Reservation) law to function as a village (city and town) of the Leech Lake Nation or Pem-bi-na Reservation. You are not to request permission from the United States. You must do this on your own. Create a community financial center (the house of someone you know is trustworthy) within each community listed below.

All citizens of all communities listed below, will deposit a percentage of their money into each community financial center. And do not dare to first consult with the United States. They are sending a message to all non white nations that they could care less for Indian Nations in a time when that message is easily not ignored. The financial corporation will be kept private so there will be no need to have it done formally. Then you must select one of the communities listed below to be the capitol of the Pem-bi-na Chippewa Reservation Financial Corporation. The financial corporation will be a simple joint savings unit which is identical to friends saving their money together privately (without the use of banks and all other financial establishments) to better their lives. If anyone who lives within any of the communities listed below does not want to deposit a percentage of their money into the savings unit, they must be carefully watched. They can't be trusted.

This financial corporation will be the Pem-bi-na Chippewa Reservation (Leech Lake, Red Lake, and White Earth Reservations) government. The PCRFC will function to provide the Pem-bi-na Chippewa Reservation with financing to establish new settlements, build and maintain new and old homes in old settlements, agriculture (greenhouse farming or hydroponic farming), health and education needs, fishing and hunting, and transportation needs and maintenance. Most financing must go to individuals to start agriculture, housing, and transportation enterprises. Electric bicycles and electric cars are mandatory. Purchase used bikes and cars then convert them into electric motor vehicles. You must encourage as many of your citizens to deposit as much of their money into the savings unit and to also apply for grants and loans so the PCRFC will be stocked with money. Request for financial funding from non Indian sources, particularly individuals who are wealthy. Do it discreetly. And money earned from business ventures, must be deposited into the savings unit. In fact, nearly all money within each community savings unit will come from money generated by business ventures. If any problems develope with Reservation leaders including Reservation police, do not negotiate with them. You don't want to depend on the United States for financing. Through treaty agreements, the United States recognized Indian Nations as sovereign nations.

Demographics of the Leech Lake Reservation

Covers 1.6 million acres or 2,500 sq. mi.
Total Population: 10,025
Indian Population: 4,561
White: 5,278
Black: 9
Asian: 42
Mixed: 311
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. A few may have predominantly white populations. I don't know so i included them. Supposedly Cass Lake has a population of more than 800. For a city of over 800, Cass Lake has a good 60 or more businesses. That would make Red Lake-Redby of the Red Lake Reservation, very envious as well as countless white cities and towns with identical populations.

Agency Bay (Agency Wi-kwed)

Ball Club


Big Lake (Kit-chay Za-ga-i-gan)

Black Duck (Ma-ka-day She-sheep)

Boy Lake (Na-bay-zis Za-ga-i-gan)

Breezy Point (No-din Nay-yah-shay)


Cass Lake (Cass Za-ga-i-gan)

Cherry (O-kway-min)

Cass River (Cass Sip-pi)

Drewery Lake (Drewery Za-ga-i-gan)

East Ball Club

East Little Wolf (Wa-bun Zis Ma-i-gan)

East Mission Lake (Wa-bun Mission Za-ga-i-gan)

Flora Lake (Flora Za-ga-i-gan)


Jackson Village (Jackson O-day-na)

Kego Lake (Ke-go Za-ga-i-gan)

Little Moss Lake (Zis Ah-ta-gib Za-ga-i-gan)

Little Turtle Lake (Zis Mic-ah-nah Za-ga-i-gan)

Little Wolf Lake (Zis Ma-i-gan Za-ga-i-gan)

Lost Lake (Ah-no Za-ga-i-gan)

Luck Lake (Sha-win-da-gos Za-ga-i-gan)

Mission Lake (Mission Za-ga-i-gan)

North Cass Lake (Gi-way-din Cass Za-ga-i-gan)

North Little Wolf (Gi-way-din Zis Ma-i-gan)

North Portage (Gi-way-din O-ni-gam)

Oak Point (Mi-tig-oh-mij Nay-yah-shay)




Portage (O-ni-gam)

Preston Lane

Ryan Village (Ryan O-day-na)

South Cass Lake (Shaw-an Cass Za-ga-i-gan)

South Mission Lake (Shaw-an Mission Za-ga-i-gan)

Squaw Lake (Kway Za-ga-i-gan)

Sugar Maple (Si-si-ba-kwat In-i-na-tig)

Sugar Point (Si-si-ba-kwat Nay-yah-shay)

Town Lake (O-day-na Za-ga-i-gan)

West Ball Club


Winnie Dam

Wood Acres (Mi-tig Di-ba-i-gans)


Boy River






Sand Box

Spring Lake



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