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Maps of Indian Country & Ceded Territories in Region 5

Indian Country in Region 5

EPA is responsible for ensuring that federal environmental statutes are fully implemented in Indian country. As defined in 18 U.S.C. 1151, Indian country includes:

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  1. all land within the limits of any reservation under the jurisdiction of the United States government;
  2. all dependent Indian communities within the borders of the United States; and
  3. all Indian allotments.

In Region 5, Indian country areas are located within Michigan, Minnesota, and Wisconsin.

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Ceded Territories in Region 5

Ceded territories are lands transferred from tribes to the federal government by treaty. A series of treaties (such as 1836, 1837, 1842, and 1854) transferred large tracts of land from tribes to the federal government. These lands are outside the boundaries of federally recognized Indian reservations. While tribal governments no longer hold title to these lands, in many cases they do retain usufructuary rights within ceded territories. These usufructuary rights include rights to hunt, fish, harvest traditional food, and gather medicinal plants. The federal courts have affirmed tribal hunting, fishing, and gathering rights in a number of decisions, most importantly in Minnesota v. Mille Lacs Band of Chippewa Indians, 526 U.S. 172 (1999) and Lac Courte Oreilles Band v. Voigt, 700 F2d 341 (7th Cir. 1983). Tribal governments serve as co-managers in protecting lands and resources in ceded territories along with state agencies and federal land managers.

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Indian Environmental Office
U.S. EPA Region 5
77 West Jackson Blvd (R-19J)
Chicago, IL 60604-3590

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