Timeline

Pre-Contact-1500 BC - The epic story of the west to east migration of the Lenni Lanape, ancient ancestors of the Anishinabe people, begins and is recorded as the Wallum Olum (an ancient written record on bark tablets and song sticks). It is the oldest written record of people in North America and dates back to before 1600 B.C.

900 AD - Seven Spirits or Grandfathers come to the Anisihnaabe living on the eastern shores of the Atlantic from what today is the St. Lawrence River south into Maine and other New England States. They deliver seven prophecies, including the coming of the white race. This marks the beginning of the westward Anishinaabe migration.

1395 - Approximate time that Ojibwe people reached Moningwunkauning (Madeline Island).

1400 - It is believed that the westward migration took about 500 years to complete, at which time the Ojibwe people as far west as northern Minnesota reached the land where food (wild rice) grows on water as prophesied.

1540 - Approximate time of news of white explorers in the east reaches Moningwunkauning (Madeline Island)

1545 - Approximate time when the Ojibwe begin to move off of Moningwunkauning (Madeline Island) and spread inland in what is now northern Wisconsin and Minnesota.

1615 - French explorer Samuel de Champlain encounters Ojibwe living on the eastern shores of Georgian Bay in northern Quebec.

1618 - French explorer Etienne BrulÚ encounters Ojibwe in the Lake Superior area.

1620 - French explorers reach the falls of the St. Mary's River where Lake Superior meets Lake Huron and call the Ojibwe who live there Saulteaux, or "people of the falls." This place was called Baawitigong, or "place of the rapids" by the Ojibwe and later called Sault St. Marie.

1634 - Jean Nicollet arrives in what is known as Wisconsin today. He was sent to this area by Samuel de Champlain to establish trade relations. He landed at Green Bay, and he met with the Wisconsin Winnebago, some Santee Dakotas, and Menominees.

1638 - Last entry on the Wallum Olum (an ancient written record on bark tablets and song sticks tracing the west to east migration of the Lenni Lenape) responding to the arrival of a ship full of Europeans simply states, "Who are they?"

1659 - Illegal French fur traders Pierre-Esprit Radisson and MÚddard Chouart des Groseilliers visit the village of Odewasideaon in northern Wisconsin.

1781 - Treaty between the British and various bands of the Ojibwe for land along the Niagra River between Lake Erie and Lake Ontario, including the Canadian side of Niagra Falls.

1781 - British purchase of Mackinaw Island

1783 - Missisauga band cedes territory along the northern shore of Lake Ontario to the British.

1795 - Treaty of Greenville cedes all of southern and eastern Ohio to the United States as a result of the Indian defeat (including some bands of Ojibwe) at the Battle of Fallen Timbers where the Shawnee prophet Tecumseh is killed.

1796 - Michele Cadote, a Frenchmen who married into the Ojibwe tribe, establishes a trading post at La Court Oreilles.

1805-1817 - Treaties cede land in northern Ohio and southern Michigan.

1819 - Treaty in which the Ojibwe cede the area around the valley of the Saginaw River and shores of Saginaw Bay in lower Michigan.

1821 - Remaining Ottawa and Ojibwe sell the rest of their land in southwestern Michigan and move northward.

1825 - Treaty of Praire du Chien, a peace and friendship treaty among tribes, establishes boundaries between warring Ojibwe and Dakota tribes among others.

1826 - Treaty with Fond du Lac Ojibwe agreeing to the 1825 Prairie du Chien Treaty.

1830 - The Removal Policy becomes the official Federal policy whereby entire tribes are cohearsed and forcibly removed from their ancestral homelands to unfamiliar territories west of the Mississippi River.

1833 - A group of tribes, calling themselves the United Nation of Chippewa, Ottawa, and Potawatomi, living in southern Ohio and Illinois give up claims east of the Mississippi River and sign a treaty promising them land on the western plains.

1836 - Ottawa and Ojibwe sell the northwestern part of Lower Michigan and the eastern half of Upper Michigan. Michigan Ojibwe treaty cases in the 1970's are based on this treaty.

1836 - British make an agreement with the Ottawa and Ojibwe living on Manitoulin Island and other islands in Lake Huron to allow other Indians to settle there as part of an unsuccessful effort to create an exclusive Indian territory.

1837 - The Pine Treaty with the Pillager, Red Lake, Mississippi, Fond du Lac, and Chequamegon (Lake Superior) bands cede lands in Wisconsin and central Minnesota The 1999 US Supreme Court decision that upheld the Ojibwe right to hunt, fish, and gather in these ceded areas was based on this treaty.

1842 - Treaty cedes the rich copper and iron areas of northern Michigan. Known as the mineral treaty.

1847 - Treaty with the Pillager and Mississippi bands for tracts of land in central Minnesota to be used as reserves for removed Winnebago and Menominee tribes (the Menominee refuse to move, preferring to stay near Green Bay; the Winnebago slowly move back to Wisconsin).

1850 - Robinson Treaty, British acquire all of the land north of Lake Huron from the Ottawa River on the east to Lake Superior on the west, which includes most of the land north of Lake Superior.

1850 - Four prominent officials of President Zachary Taylor's administration conspire to move Lake Superior (Wisconsin and Michigan) Ojibwe Indians to lands (Sandy Lake) in Minnesota Territory leading to the Wisconsin Ojibwe Death March. In the end, perhaps as many as 500 Ojibwe people died from illness, cold, and starvation. Those who survived returned to their homelands and the public outcry forced Minnesota Territorial Governor Alexander Ramsey and his Indian Agent John Watrous to abandon the scheme.

1852 - Chief Buffalo of the Madeline Island (LaPointe) band travels at the age of nearly 90 to Washington D.C. to meet with the new President, Millard Fillmore, to rescind Taylor's removal order.

1854 - Treaty with the Mississippi, Lake Superior, and Boise Fort bands at La Pointe, Wisconsin, cedes the land along the western side of Lake Superior between Fond du Lac in Minnesota to the border of Canada. This is the treaty that established permanent Ojibwe reservations at Keweenaw Bay (L'Anse), in Michigan and Bad River, Lac du Flambeau, and Lac Courte Oreilles in Wisconsin, and Fond du Lac, and Grand Portage in Minnesota.

1855 - Treaty with Mississippi, Pillager, and Lake Winnebigoshish bands cedes lands around the Mississippi headwaters establishing Leach Lake and Mille Lacs reservations in Minnesota.

1860 - Bay Mills Ojibwe reservation established in Michigan.

1863 - Land cession treaty establishes Red Lake reservation.

1864 - Treaty with Pembina and Red Lake bands cedes the Red River Valley, an area considered one of the richest agricultural areas in the United State.

1864 - Treaty at Isabella Indian Reservation in Michigan with Saginaw, Swan Creek, and Black River bands releasing the "current" reservation land and to set apart unsold lands within Isabella county for Indian use creating the Saginaw Chippewa Reservation.

1864 - Mississippi, Pillager, and Lake Winnebigoshish bands cede Gull Lake, Sandy Lake, Rabbit Lake, Pokegamin Lake and Rice Lake. Reserving Leach Lake and Mille Lac. New stipulations not recognizing Chiefs of bands with less than 50 tribal members.

1866 - Nett Lake (later called Boise Fort) Ojibwe reservation established in northern Minnesota.

1867 - Treaty with Mississippi band in Washington, D.C. establishing the White Earth Reservation.

1869 -United States purchases a large tract of land in northern Minnesota from the Red Lake band.

1871 - Ojibwe and Cree cede much of southern Manitoba.

1873 - Ojibwe lose southern Ontario north of the border with Minnesota through a land cession treaty.

1875 - Ojibwe and Cree lose all of southeastern Saskatchewan and the land surrounding Lake Winnipeg by treaty cession.

1887 - The Dawes Act is passed setting in motion the Allotment policy whereby approximately 160 acres of reservation land is given to individual tribal members and the remaining millions of acres of tribal lands are sold to whites.

1889 - Treaty at Red Lake ceding more land surrounding the reservation, after much deliberation only 7 Chiefs signed along with 247 tribal members. This land sale exempts Red Lake from the Allotment policy thereby retaining it's sole status as a closed reservation. Today, Red Lake is the only reservation in the country that is not "checker-boarded" with parcels of the reservation belonging to white land owners.

1901 - John Blackbird, a full-blood Ojibwe from Bad River is arrested and sentenced to 30 days hard labor for fishing with a net without a license on the reservation. U.S. District Court Judge Romanzo Bunn ruled in favor of Blackbird and ordered the State to release him and rebuked the State for their "over-zealousness" in arresting Indian fishers for using nets in streams on their own reservations, which was not justifiable in law based on the usufructuary rights retained by the Ojibwe in their treaties with the United States.

1905, 1910, 1929 - Canada acquires through treaty huge tracts of Ojibwe land bordering Hudson Bay.

1907 - An Ojibwe man named Morrin from Bad River is arrested for gill net fishing in Lake Superior in violation of Wisconsin law. The Wisconsin State Supreme Court uses his appeal to further erode off reservation fishing and hunting rights.

1913 - The Rocky Boy Reservation in Montana is established and includes many Plains Ojibwe.

1920 - Michigan DNR officials begin arresting Ojibwe hunters and fisherman.

1927 - Wisconsin begins to crack down on off reservation hunting, fishing, and gathering by members of the Lac Courete Orreilles Ojibwe.

1934 - Hayward Congress brings Ojibwe from Michigan, Wisconsin, and Minnesota to voice their concerns about eroding hunting, fishing, and gathering rights on and off the reservation. Lac du Flambeau Ojibwe attorney Thomas St. Germaine argues eloquently against pending legislation that would further erode those rights.

1938 - St. Croix Chippewa Indians and Sokaogan (Mole Lake) band of Chippewa Indians of Wisconsin establish reservations.

1953 - Under the official federal policy of Termination of Indian tribes, the Republican congress passes Public Law 280, which transfers criminal jurisdiction on tribal lands to some states, including Wisconsin and Minnesota. The states use the law to step up their violations of hunting, fishing, and gathering treaty rights.

1959 - The Bad River tribal council issues a non-violent declaration of war against the state of Wisconsin in response to their unlawful and vigorous application of state conservation laws to Indians on the reservations.

1966 - U.S. Attorney General Bronson C. LaFollette declares that treaty rights are still in force on reservations and that the state's conservation laws only applied to the Ojibwe when they were outside the boundaries of their reservations.

1971 - Dick Gerno of Red Cliff is arrested after testing treaty fishing rights along the shores of Lake Superior in northern Wisconsin.

1972 - Wisconsin Supreme Court rules in favor Red Cliff Ojibwe Dick Gerno based on the 1854 Treaty establishing the reservation along the shores of Lake Superior.

1974 - Proclamation establishes Sault St. Marie Ojibwe reservation in Upper Michigan.

1974 -Tribble brothers from Lac Courte Oreilles arrested for spear fishing in ceded territory in Wisconsin.

1975 - In Michigan, Ojibwe tribal Chairman Abe LaBeaux is arrested for violating state fishing regulations off the reservation.

1976 - U.S. Supreme Court upholds treaty rights case of Michigan Ojibwe fishing in Lake Michigan and Lake Superior.

1978 - Federal District Court Judge James Doyle rules against Tribble brothers.

1979 - Federal District Court affirms Ojibwe treaty rights in Michigan to self-regulate and to use gill nets.

1981 - U.S. Supreme Court refuses to review Michigan case on appeal thereby upholding the rights reserved in the 1836 treaty. Michigan –hippewa and Ottawa tribes form the Chippewa Ottawa Treaty Fishery Management Authority(COTFMA)to begin self-regulation and management of the treaty area fisheries and resources.

1983 - The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit (The Voigt Decision) reverses Doyle's appeal and upholds Ojibwe off reservation hunting, fishing, and gathering rights as set forth in the 1837 and 1842 treaties. The U.S. Supreme Court refuses to hear the case thereby upholding the Ojibwe treaty rights. Governor Earl calls for cooperation among state agencies and tribal governments to resolve the matter.

1983 - Voigt Inter-tribal Task Force Committee created to address resource management issues.

1984 - Great Lakes Indian Fish and Wildlife Commission (GLIFWC) established to manage the resources. Comprised of eleven sovereign tribal governments located throughout Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Michigan, the Commission's purpose is to protect and enhance treaty-guaranteed rights to hunt, fish, and gather on inland territories (also pictured) ceded under the Chippewa treaties of 1836, 1837, 1842, and 1854; to protect and enhance treaty guaranteed fishing on the Great Lakes; and to provide cooperative management of these resources

1984 - Proclamation establishes Grand Traverse Reservation in Michigan.

1985 - COTFMA enters 15-year consent order with the state of Michigan to work cooperatively with the state in resource management issues.

1986 - Republican Assembly minority leader Tommy Thompson, running on an anti-Indian campaign pledge defeats Governor Earl in the state's gubernatorial election.

1987 - Encouraged by Gov. Thompson's anti-Indian rhetoric, anti-Indian groups such as PARR and ICERR step up their protests and openly harass and threaten Ojibwe fishers with racist and violent attacks at boat landings in northern Wisconsin.

1988 - Public Law establishes Lac Vieux Desert Ojibwe Reservation in Michigan

1990 - After years of harassment and illegal arrests by Minnesota DNR, the Mille Lacs band of Ojibwe files suit in Federal District Court against the state of Minnesota for violating their reserved rights to hunt, fish, and gather on ceded territories based on the 1937 treaty.

1994 - The Mille Lacs case is upheld in the U.S. Court of Appeals and heads for the U.S. Supreme Court.

1999 - The US Supreme Court rules in favor of the Mille Lacs treaty case upholding the Ojibwe right to hunt, fish, and gather in the ceded areas based on the 1937 treaty.

2000 - Mille Lacs and other bands are awarded reimbursement of legel fees by the state of Minnesota stemming from their U.S. Supreme Court case.

2000 - COTFMA consent order with Michigan expires and after lengthy negotiations with the state of Michigan enters into a new 20-year consent decree to manage, allocate, and regulate fishing in the 1836 Treaty waters.

2000 - October, Ojibwe bands from Michigan, Wisconsin and Minnesota gather at Sandy Lake for a memorial marking the very spot where over 150 Ojibwe people lost their lives due to the scheming of Minnesota Territorial Governor Ramsey. Another 250 or more Ojibwe died returning to their homes in Wisconsin and Michigan in what became known as the Wisconsin Death March.

2001 - Effective January 2001, the inter-tribal regulatory body Chippewa Ottawa Treaty Fishery Management Authority (COTFMA) officially changed over to the Chippewa Ottawa Resource Authority (CORA), gathering all 1836 treaty fishing tribes under its wing and taking on a larger scope in regulation.