Brothertown Indian Nation

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Guide to Brothertown Indian Nation ancestry, family history and genealogy: birth records, marriage records, death records, census records, parish registers, and military records.

Tribal Headquarters[edit | edit source]

Brothertown Indian Nation
82 S Macy Street / PO Box 2206
Fond du Lac WI 54936
Phone: 920-929-9964

History[edit | edit source]

Brief Timeline[edit | edit source]

18th Century: Algonquian Tribes living in the region east of New York State, commenced to relocate to north central New York State where they sought refugee among the Algonquin's and Iroquois of that region. Historians claim they were primarily Mohegan and Pequot but also included Algonquian's from the Narragansett, Montauk, Niantic, and Tunxis. Many of them were converts to Christianity which made them alien to the more powerful Algonquin's. Their willingness to accept Christianity was not welcomed by the Algonquin's of New York State. From the late 18th century to the beginning of the 19th century, two groups emerged. One were traditional, while the other were more open to contact with the whites. Many of the more open Indians were mixed bloods. The whites often negotiated with them instead of the traditional group. The traditional group merged with the Algonquin's of New York State.

Early 19th Century: A period of great unrest corrupted the Brothertown Indians as the whites were forcing their way ever to the west. The two groups of Brothertown Indians became unwilling to cooperate. The traditionalist wanted to follow the Seven Fires Prophecy and migrate to the west away from the whites, while the more open group wanted to remain. Another group emerged from the more open Brothertown Indians. They were largely mixed bloods who favored joining the whites. The Brothertown Indians settled down to live on the New York Iroquois Reservations. Among the Iroquois were many who were also traditionalists as well as those predominantly Algonquin blood.

Brief History[edit | edit source]

1785: The traditionalists commenced to relocate to north central New York State. Among them were many from the more open group. Their presence among the New York State Algonquin's was a bit uneasy. The New York State Algonquin's lived from Niagara Falls, on over to Oneida Lake, and to the north. The region was very dangerous at the time and remained that way until after the War of 1812. During the Revolutionary War on up to the War of 1812, the whites made alliances with the Iroquois and the more open Brothertown Indians. It caused much trouble with the Algonquin's and their Iroquois allies. Many of the Algonquin's, Brothertown Indians, and Iroquois commenced to flee mainly to the north, as well as to the west.

1815: The War of 1812 ended. Leaders from the traditionalists merged with the Algonquin's, while the more open group became neutral. Many from the more open group settle down to live on the New York State Iroquois Reservations with the Algonquin's and Iroquois. During the Revolutionary War, many of the New York State Algonquin's, Iroquois, and Brothertown Indians were allowed to relocate to Algonquin land in southern Ontario, by the Algonquin's of that region who are also known as the Chippewa's, Mississauga's, Ojibwa's, Ottawa's,Potawatomi's, Saginaw's, and Swan Creek and Black River Chippewa's. The Algonquin's and Brothertown Indians who remained to live on the New York State Iroquois Reservation's were forced to assimilate among the Iroquois.

1821: An 860,000 acre Reservation was set aside for the Brothertown Indians and Iroquois, on Algonquin (Menominee) land in Wisconsin.

1822: Another tract of Algonquin land in eastern Wisconsin, was set aside for the Brothertown and other indigenous people. It covered 6,720,000 acres. The land was located almost along the entire western shore of Lake Michigan. The Algonquin's set aside 153,000 acres for the Brothertown Indians.

1830: Migrated from New York settling near Lake Winnebago in Wisconsin

1838: On January 15, 1838 many of the Brothertown traditionalists and their Iroquois allies, signed a treaty with the United States in which many of the New York Reservations which had been set aside years earlier, were eradicated. Several of the Reservations were located within Algonquin (Chippewa) territory, and in the Niagara Falls region. One is known as the Buffalo Creek Reservation. Reservations which were closed: Niagara County Reservation, Tuscarora Reservation, Cattaraugus Reservation, Allegany Reservation, and Tonawanda Reservation. However, the strong Chippewa presence kept the Reservations in place with, however, much of the Reservations lands being lost to the whites.
The United States did not want anymore Indians migrating to the west. They knew future trouble would occur. Only the Buffalo Creek Reservation was lost except 9 acres. The 1838 treaty also included the Brothertown Indians and Iroquois of Wisconsin. Many of the New York State and Wisconsin Brothertown Indians, joined with the Chippewa's and Iroquois and migrated to Kansas and Oklahoma, in 1838-1839. Their descendants still live in Kansas and Oklahoma.

1839: March 3, Brothertown Indians became citizens of the United States

Reservations[edit | edit source]

Allegany Reservation of New York.

Buffalo Creek Reservation of New York.

Cattaraugus Reservation of New York.

St. Regis Reservation of New York.

Tonawanda Reservation of New York.

Tuscarora Reservation of New York.

Additional References[edit | edit source]

History of the Brothertown Indians from the Milwaukee Public Museum

Additional History from Earthlink site.

Samson Occom and the Christian Indians of New England. by Dr. W. DeLoss Love. Boston, The Pilgrim Press Chicago C. 1899. FHL film: 1,698,144 item 11.  (Appendix- Family History of the Brothertown Indians)

Records[edit | edit source]

The majority of records of individuals were those created by the agencies. Some records may be available to tribal members through the tribal headquarters.They were (and are) the local office of the Bureau of Indian Affairs, and were charged with maintaining records of the activities of those under their responsibility. Among these records are:


Tribe Agency Location of Original Records

Pre-1880 Correspondence

M234 RG 75 Rolls

Roll Number




Brothertown Green Bay (Menominee) Agency, 1824-1961 Washington D.C. and Chicago 315-36 -
Brothertown Six Nations Agency, 1824-34 Washington D.C. 832 -

Treaty[edit | edit source]

  • 1838 January 15, at Buffalo Creek,with the New York Indians   

Important Websites[edit | edit source]

Constitution of the Brothertown Indians; approved 1939, amended 2007

Tribal Website of the Brothertown Indian Nation

Wikipedia article on the Brothertown Indians

Link Full Text of Samson Occom and the Christian Indians of New England

For Further Reading[edit | edit source]

See For Further Reading.

References[edit | edit source]