Treaty Timeline

Most of the land that is now Minnesota was ceded to the U.S. by Ojibwe and Dakota people in a series of treaties over a 30-year period (1837-1867). These treaties are part of a larger picture that affected indigenous people and land in what is now Minnesota.

Local Ojibwe groups have always enjoyed autonomy within the larger Ojibwe nation. Bands in the east were signing treaties with the U.S. before the Constitution was created. In addition to their land cessions in present-day Minnesota, which began in 1837, those bands that lived in what is now Minnesota signed peace treaties with the U.S. in 1825 and 1826, and land cession treaties in what is now Wisconsin.

Dakota people signed peace treaties with the U.S. after the War of 1812, before their significant land cessions began in 1837.

In addition, land in what is now Minnesota was held at various times by Ho-Chunk, Menominee, Sac and Fox people, and was set aside for “mixed-blood” reservations. The ultimate US acquisition of these tracts required treaties with groups other than Ojibwe and Dakota nations.

Some land in Minnesota was also acquired by acts of Congress after the treaty making era ended in the 1870s.