Natives no longer independent

1871

United States

Borders Discrimination & Inequity

In the latter half of the nineteenth century, federal policy toward Native American Indians reflected white settlers’ desires for territorial and market expansion across the continent and the eradication of Native American national and tribal identities. Viewing Native American land rights as obstacles to their westward expansion, railroad companies and other corporate interest groups successfully lobbied Congress to pass the Indian Appropriation Act in 1871. The act proclaimed that: “no Indian nation or tribe within the territory of the United States shall be acknowledged or recognized as an independent nation, tribe, or power, with whom the United States may contract by treaty.”