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North American Native Bands and Nations

Last modified: 2023-02-02 by rick wyatt
Keywords: indian bands | native bands | first nations | native american |
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1. In the United States of America there is no one body that represent all Indian Nations in the Country (except the National Congress of American Indians, which is a political body). It is left to the separate nations to bond with others or not. However, there are many organizations that are created for support, cooperation and maintaining things of general interest or benefit. Sometimes those organizations are based on ethnic lines, and sometimes on geographic location. There is no list of these organizations (at least I couldn't find any), but I accidently locate some of them. In some cases they are designated as associations, in other as inter-tribal (or intra-tribal) councils, etc.

2. There are 573 Federally Recognized Tribes in USA, as listed by the Bureau of Indian Affairs in November 2018. Most of the tribes are located in Alaska and California, and several states have no Federally Recognized Tribes. Many of the tribes are small and have no further entities within them, but some have organized local government structure. Some have Chapters, some have Districts, Clans or other types of local councils.

3. There are 63 State Recognized Tribes in 12 States across USA. Their government structure is the same as the FRT, and the only difference is how they communicate - with the Federal or with the State Government.

4. The phenomenon in the USA is the large number of Unrecognized Indian Tribes and some non-Indian Tribes (Metis in the Northeast or Mixed Black/Indian or Black/White quasi-tribes in Southeast of the USA). There is no exact number, but there are approximately several hundred non-recognized tribes in the country. Some of them are registered as Non-profit Incorporated Associations or similar, but some refuse to do so, and are trying to gain Federal Recognition.

5. Indian/Tribal Corporations are corporate bodies that help tribal governments to manage their lands or local business. The most famous and largest are those in Alaska, where they are involved in managing vast territories. In other parts of the country, those corporate bodies are managing the casino gaming, spa facilities, hunting areas, touristic voyages etc.

6. Tribal Flags. All Indian Tribes have their own flags. Some are very proud of them and are well known within the vexillological community. Other are very "shy" and usually display the flags in the official chambers or similar. Some tribes are using several different flags, probably due to using different flag-makers companies. In other cases, there are rather frequent change of the official names of the tribes, and this lead to change of the flag. However, we are in task to locate, describe and present to the World about one thousand Indian Tribal flags (including corporate and local governments' flags).


1. The Canadian Government recognizes three autochthonous groups of nations - Indians, Metis and Inuit. Unlike in the USA, some native governments have a wide autonomy, even in the administrative-territorial structure of the country. Nunavut Territory is first level ATD, and there are some inter-level autonomous entities like Nunatsiavut, Kativik, etc., which makes Canada pretty difficult to clear the things.

2. There is Assembly of First Nation as organization to represent and protect all First Nations in Canada. There is also Metis Federation of Canada, and Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami as Inuit organization in Canada.

3. There are many inter-tribal organizations, usually known as Tribal Councils, which give support and needing reaction on various questions for member tribes. They could have two or more member tribes, and in some cases one tribe can be member of several tribal councils for various reasons. It is unusual, but there are even some cases when US tribe is a member of Canadian tribal council.

4. There are 614 First Nations in Canada, but there are also unknown number of Metis and Inuit local governments, and some semi-independent Indian Bands.

5. Corporations are mostly usual for Inuit governments in Canada, but there are also such bodies for the other native governments.

6. Tribal flags. All First Nations have their own flags. Some are very well known, and others are yet to be discovered. As in the USA, there are also about one thousand such flags to be found, described and presented to the World thru FOTW.
Valentin Poposki, 14 July 2019

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