Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Free Online U.S. American Indian Legal Resources

In my previous incarnation (read, last job), I did a lot of American Indian law searching. In November, I noticed that a lot of sites have outdated links to the resources I used to use. So, here are some very useful U.S. American Indian legal resources that are available on the Web for free.

For American Indian treaties, there are two main publications:

Volumes I & II of the American State Papers (Indian Affairs from 1789-1827)


Volume II of Kappler's Indian Affairs: Laws and Treaties (U.S. government treaties with American Indians from 1778-1883)

Additionally, The University of Nebraska, Lincoln, has 9 Early Recognized Treaties with American Indian Nations. (The site explains that these 9 treaties are not included in the online version of Kappler's (linked above), but are recognized as ratified treaties by the Department of State. Seven of these are between the British and the American Indian Nations and two are between the U.S. and the American Indian Nations. The site says that the two U.S. party treaties are included in the American State Papers.)

The other 6 volumes of of Kappler's are also of significant value. They contain U.S. laws and executive orders concerning American Indians from 1871-1970.

The Library of Congress's American Memory Project (which houses the American State Papers) has Indian Land Cessions in the United States,1784-1894 including 67 maps.

The Native American Constitution and Law Digitization Project has quite a lot of good information.

"This Project is a cooperative effort among the University of Oklahoma Law Center and the National Indian Law Library (NILL), and Native American tribes providing access to the Constitutions, Tribal Codes, and other legal documents."
Included in the "other legal documents" are items like Cases and Materials on Problems In Lands Allotted to American Indians by Joseph F. Rarick, 1982. and Handbook of Federal Indian Law by Felix S. Cohen, 1941 (though the site mentions that there are errors in the imaged copy of Cohen's and an original should be checked for complete authority).

The Native American Rights Fund (NARF) provides access to Tribal Codes and Constitutions too. NARF also has recently updated:

You can find Indian trust and Cobell lawsuit information at DOI's Office of the Special Trustee for American Indians:
"In 1994, the American Indian Trust Fund Management Reform Act established the Office of the Special Trustee for American Indians to improve the management of the Indian fiduciary trust in the Department of the Interior. OST manages Indian beneficiaries’ financial assets and is responsible for coordinating reform efforts to improve trust asset management and beneficiary services throughout Interior."
The Tribal Court Clearinghouse is a good place to go for current legal issues:
"The Tribal Court Clearinghouse is a comprehensive website established in June 1997 to serve as a resource for American Indian and Alaska Native Nations, American Indian and Alaska Native people, tribal justice systems, victims services providers, tribal service providers, and others involved in the improvement of justice in Indian country."

Cross-posted at AbsTracked

1 comment:

Little White Dove said...

Are there any resourses for American Indian's that need legal representation regarding a Pardon. My uncle has been in prison for 35 years and is going up before a Pardon's Board. Please advise me.. Thank You


Little White Dove