Montana has been home to seven federally recognized Indian reservations: Flathead, Blackfeet, Rocky Boy's, Fort Belknap, Fort Peck, Crow, and Northern Cheyenne. At the end of 2019, the U.S. Congress approved federal recognition for the Little Shell Band of Chippewa Indians and the federal government is committed to purchase 200 acres of Montana land for the Little Shell reservation.

This map shows the tribal boundaries defined by the Fort Laramie Treaty of 1851 and the Flathead and Blackfeet Treaties of 1885 and the exact locations of today's reservations.  

The tribes that call each reservation and tribal capital (in parenthesis) home are:


MSU Extension has offices on the Blackfeet, Flathead, Fort Belknap and
Fort Peck reservations and at all seven Mission Mountains near Nine Pipestribal colleges: 

Aaniiih Nakoda CollegeBlackfeet Reservation; Harlem, Montana

Blackfeet Community College - Blackfeet Reservation; Browning, Montana

Chief Dull Knife College - Northern Cheyenne Reservation; Lame Deer, Montana

Fort Peck Community College - Fort Peck Reservation; Poplar, Montana

Little Big Horn College - Crow Reservation; Crow Agency, Montana

Salish Kootenai College - Flathead Reservation; Pablo, Montana

Stone Child College - Fort Belknap Reservation; Box Elder, Montana


Indian Education for All in Montana 

The Montana University System (MUS) has created the Indian Education for All in Montana course to ensure that every member of the MUS team is engaged in conversations around the Montana Constitutional mandate that "every Montanan, whether Indian or non-Indian, be encouraged to learn about the distinct and unique heritage of American Indians in a culturally responsive manner."

This five-section course is designed with the understanding that MUS faculty and staff have a diverse educational background and experience regarding American Indian issues. The content may be entirely new for some and for others, it may enhance your current knowledge base with the goal of ensuring all have a strong foundation upon which to build.

Access the course and materials here.    

Common Threads Network of Indigenous Communities' Research Partners

Common Threads is an open-invitation network for faculty, grad students & staff who are engaged off-campus with Indigenous communities conducting research and/or providing service program support.

This group liaisons with the Council on American Indian Programs which focuses on American Indian student success. MSU increasingly is a leader in partnership work with Indigenous communities.  We believe it helps all of our work if we know more about what each other is doing and have the opportunity to share best practices. Indigenous partners appreciate when different partners at the university are aware of each other’s projects, and where appropriate, are collaborating with each other, to reduce the burden and increase coordination and benefits for their communities. 

For more information and join the group, contact:
Elizabeth Bird, College of Education, Health and Human Development
406-994-2520, ebird@montana.edu


eagle featherResource Directory

MSU Extension's Community Development  Program is committed to offering resources and materials on a variety of American Indian and Indigenous Peoples topics, especially those of interest to the individuals and communities of rural Montana.

The resources on this page are sorted by topic, interest, or population and include local all the way up to global resources.

Cultural Competence
Education
LGBTQ+ and Two-Spirit
Mental and Physical Health
Youth
American Indian and Indigenous Peoples Topics in the News, Media and Pop Culture

 

eagle feather Cultural Competence

American Indian and Alaska Native Culture Card: A Guide to Build Cultural Awareness
This guide enhances cultural competence when serving American Indian and Alaska Native communities. It covers regional differences, cultural customs, spirituality, communication styles, the role of veterans and older adults, and health disparities.

Essential Understandings Regarding Montana Indians
The foundation for guiding Indian Education for All began in 1999 when American Indian educators from the Montana tribes met in Helena to discuss the most important issues regarding Montana tribes that all Montanans need to understand. The product of those discussions is the publication, “Essential Understandings Regarding Montana Indians.”

First Nations of Montana
This video, produced by the Montana Department of Commerce provides a brief glimpse of the people and ways of Montana's Tribal Nations.

Montana's American Indian People FAQ
A list of frequently asked questions about Montana's American Indian People.

Montana Governor's Office of Indian Affairs
The Office of Indian Affairs was established in 1951 by the Montana legislature to facilitate effective tribal-state communications with special attention to the discussion and resolution of issues that Indian peoples face regarding their unique political status and as full citizens of the state of Montana. The Office of Indian Affairs serves as a liaison between the state and the Tribes and promotes economic development, environmental protection, education, support for social services, and enduring good will.

Montana Indians: Their History and Location
This publication is intended as a brief introduction to the tribal nations in Montana. The material is organized by reservations even though, in some cases, more than one tribe is located on a reservation. It includes a section on Montana “Landless” Indians, the Little Shell Tribe of Chippewa, as well as a section on “urban” Indians, those who do not currently reside on a reservation. Some Montana Indians reside on reservations other than their own.

Montana Reservation Timelines
The Montana Tribal Histories Reservation Timelines are collections of significant events as referenced by tribal representatives, in existing texts, and in the Montana tribal colleges’ history projects. While not all-encompassing, they serve as instructional tools that accompany the text of both the history projects and the Montana Tribal Histories: Educators Resource Guide. The largest and oldest histories of Montana Tribes are still very much oral histories and remain in the collective memories of individuals. Some of that history has been lost, but much remains vibrant within community stories and narratives that have yet to be documented. 

Tribal Territories of Montana
This map identifies each of Montana's seven American Indian reservations as well as each of the tribes on those lands. 

 

eagle feather Education

American Indian Higher Education Consortium
The American Indian Higher Education Consortium, a 501(c)(3) organization governed by a board of directors composed of the presidents of the accredited United States-based Tribal Colleges and Universities (TCUs), is celebrating 45 years as the collective spirit and unifying voice of our nation's 37 TCUs—a unique community of tribally and federally chartered institutions working to strengthen tribal nations and make a lasting difference in the lives of American Indians and Alaska Natives.

Montana's American Indian People FAQ
A list of frequently asked questions about Montana's American Indian People.

Montana Governor's Office of Indian Affairs
The Office of Indian Affairs was established in 1951 by the Montana legislature to facilitate effective tribal-state communications with special attention to the discussion and resolution of issues that Indian peoples face regarding their unique political status and as full citizens of the state of Montana. The Office of Indian Affairs serves as a liaison between the state and the Tribes and promotes economic development, environmental protection, education, support for social services, and enduring good will.

Montana Office of Public Instruction - Indian Education in Montana
Information on the Indian Education for All program and the Indian Student Achievement program.

 

eagle feather LGBTQ+ and Two-Spirit

Visit the MSU Community Development Program LGBTQ+ Resources/Native American page. 

 

eagle feather Mental and Physical Health

Coalition to Stop Violence Against Native Women
Organized in 1996 by three founding Native women, Peggy Bird (Kewa), Darlene Correa (Laguna Pueblo) and Genne James (Navajo), the Coalition to Stop Violence Against Native Women (CSVANW) was created to provide support to other Native advocates working in domestic violence, sexual assault, dating violence, stalking and sex trafficking in New Mexico’s tribal communities. 

A Discussion on Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs)
Dr. Donald Warne talks about ACEs in minority populations, new studies in historical trauma specifically regarding epigenics, studying how trauma changes or becomes stored in the DNA.  “In South Dakota, 50% of the Non-Native American population had a score of at least 1 on the ACEs (Adverse Childhood Experiences) test.  For the American Indian population, it was over 80%.”

Finding Our Roots: Indigenous Foods and the Food Sovereignty Movement in the United States 
A teaching unit from the Montana Office of Public Instruction that addresses the contemporary issues of food security and food sovereignty among indigenous peoples in North America, focusing primarily on tribal nations within the United States. It covers the topics of indigenous food diversity, food security, and food sovereignty.

Indian Health Disparities
Fact sheet providing statistics on American Indian and Alaska Native health disparities and mortality disparities.

MSU Extension Addressing Mental Health in Non-Clinical Settings
MSU Extensionis delivering evidence-based educational mental health programming: Youth Aware of Mental Health, Mental Health First Aid, and Youth Mental Health First Aid.

MSU Extension Community Health Resources
The Community Health Resources Program promotes and enhances the capacity of individuals, families, and communities to make well-informed, healthy choices and decisions. A major outreach strategy includes advancing health equity, reducing health disparities, and improving the health and well-being of vulnerable, underserved, at-risk, marginalized, disenfranchised populations.

NativeWellness.Life
A health and wellness magazine for and by Native American Indians.

Native Women's Wilderness
Native Women's Wilderness was created to bring Native women together to share stories, support each other, and learn from one another as they endevour to explore and celebrate the wilderness and native lands.

Opioid Use Disorder in Rural Montana: From Insight to Education
Montana has significant challenges in reducing the effects of opioid use and misuse. In 2011, 1in 5 Montana adults reported taking an opioid pain medication in the last 12 months. A higher prevalence of prescription opioid use was reported by American Indians than by whites and by persons reporting fair or poor health than by those reporting good or excellent health. (MT DPHHS, 2013). Opioid use is affecting the young and old.

We R Native
For Native Youth, By Native Youth - Wellness is more than being physically fit, it's a lifestyle.

 

eagle feather Youth

A Discussion on Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs)
Dr. Donald Warne talks about ACEs in minority populations, new studies in historical trauma specifically regarding epigenics, studying how trauma changes or becomes stored in the DNA.  “In South Dakota, 50% of the Non-Native American population had a score of at least 1 on the ACEs (Adverse Childhood Experiences) test.  For the American Indian population, it was over 80%.”

We R Native
For Native Youth, By Native Youth - Wellness is more than being physically fit, it's a lifestyle.

 

eagle feather American Indian and Indigenous Peoples Topics in the News, Media and Pop Culture

Native American athletes and fans face ongoing racism
Congress approves Little Shell Tribe recognition in Montana
Mindful Teaching of Native American History and Life (interview)