Last modified: 2012-11-17 by rick wyatt
Keywords: leech lake band | ojibwe | chippewa | minnesota | native american |
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image by Donald Healy, 12 January 2008
map image by Peter Orenski based on input from Don Healy
Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe (or Chippewa) - Minnesota
Commonly called "Chippewa" in the United States and Ojibway in Canada, the Ojibwe of Michigan, Minnesota, Wisconsin, the Dakotas, and Ontario prefer to call themselves Anishinabe, meaning "first men". They accept "Ojibwe", but intensely dislike "Chippewa", even though some bands include it in their official name for recognition by the wider world. Ojibwe (or Ojibway) is an Algonquin phrase that refers to a unique style of puckered seam on the moccasins of the Anishinabe. Chippewa is considered a poor attempt by early French explorers to say Ojibwe (ENAT, 57-60).
The Ojibwe are one of the largest Tribes in the United States, third only to the Cherokee and Navajo, according to most surveys. The Ojibwe, however, so widely intermingled with the white man that by the middle of this century it was thought that a pure-blooded Ojibwe no longer existed.
© Donald Healy 2008
Rather than flying a single flag for the Ojibwe Nation in the United States, each band decides whether it wants a flag and what the design should be. The Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe live on the 28,000-acres Leech Lake Reservation in Minnesota, whose flag is white and bears the tribal seal in the center (flag provided by Advertising Flag Co.).
The seal has a red ring, with "LEECH LAKE RESERVATION" in black, around a white central disk. Within it a yellow equilateral triangle points upwards, its corners touching the ring. Outside the triangle are (at left) symbols of nature - pine trees and a soaring eagle; (at right) symbols of education - a diploma and a mortarboard; and (below) symbols of justice and law - scales of justice. Within the triangle appear a peace pipe and two crossed brown feathers representing the Ojibwe people. The yellow triangle recalls the birchbark wigwams, the traditional dwellings of the Ojibwe, and unifies the other symbols to show that the Ojibwe people have a home on the Leech Lake reservation where they can prosper under the rule of law, through education, and in harmony with nature.
© Donald Healy 2008
information provided by Peter Orenski, 12 January 2008