1972 October 31

“Trail of Broken Treaties”: Native American Manifesto for Reparations


The Trail of Broken Treaties was a twenty-point manifesto adopted by Native American activists at a meeting in Minneapolis, Minnesota, on this day. The twenty points/demands included a Commission to Review Treaty Commitments & Violations, and that All Indians to be Governed by Treaty Relations. Following up on the manifesto, on November 2, 1972, about 500 Native Americans occupied the offices of the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) in Washington, DC, to demand action of their manifesto.

The Trail of Broken Treaties, Point #1: “RESTORATION OF CONSTITUTIONAL TREATY-MAKING AUTHORITY: The U.S. President should propose by executive message, and the Congress should consider and enact legislation, to repeal the provision in the 1871 Indian Appropriations Act which withdrew federal recognition from Indian Tribes and Nations as political entities, which could be contracted by treaties with the United States, in order that the President may resume the exercise of his full constitutional authority for acting in the matters of Indian Affairs – and in order that Indian Nations may represent their own interests in the manner and method envisioned and provided in the Federal Constitution.”

Read the complete manifestohttp://www.aimovement.org/ggc/trailofbrokentreaties.html

Learn more at the Native American Rights Fund: http://www.narf.org/

Learn more: Paul Smith and Robert Allen Warrior, Like a Hurricane: The Indian Movement from Alcatraz to Wounded Knee (1996)

Read: George Castile, To Show Heart: Native American Self-Determination and Federal Indian Policy, 1960–1975 (1998)

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