Seneca nation
The Seneca are a group of indigenous
Indigenous peoples of the Americas
The indigenous peoples of the Americas are the pre-Columbian inhabitants of North and South America, their descendants and other ethnic groups who are identified with those peoples. Indigenous peoples are known in Canada as Aboriginal peoples, and in the United States as Native Americans...

 people native to North America. They were the nation located farthest to the west within the Six Nations or Iroquois League
The Iroquois , also known as the Haudenosaunee or the "People of the Longhouse", are an association of several tribes of indigenous people of North America...

 in New York before the American Revolution
American Revolution
The American Revolution was the political upheaval during the last half of the 18th century in which thirteen colonies in North America joined together to break free from the British Empire, combining to become the United States of America...

. While exact population figures are unknown, approximately 15,000 to 25,000 Seneca live in Canada, near Brantford, Ontario
Brantford, Ontario
Brantford is a city located on the Grand River in Southern Ontario, Canada. While geographically surrounded by the County of Brant, the city is politically independent...

, at the Six Nations of the Grand River First Nation. They are descendants of Seneca who resettled there, as they had been allies of the British during the American Revolution. Nearly 30,000 Seneca live in the United States, on and off reservations
Indian reservation
An American Indian reservation is an area of land managed by a Native American tribe under the United States Department of the Interior's Bureau of Indian Affairs...

 around Buffalo, New York
Buffalo, New York
Buffalo is the second most populous city in the state of New York, after New York City. Located in Western New York on the eastern shores of Lake Erie and at the head of the Niagara River across from Fort Erie, Ontario, Buffalo is the seat of Erie County and the principal city of the...

 and in Oklahoma
Oklahoma is a state located in the South Central region of the United States of America. With an estimated 3,751,351 residents as of the 2010 census and a land area of 68,667 square miles , Oklahoma is the 28th most populous and 20th-largest state...



The Seneca nation's own name (autonym) is Onöndowága, meaning "People of the Great Hill." It is identical to the endonym used by the Onondaga
Onondaga (tribe)
The Onondaga are one of the original five constituent nations of the Iroquois Confederacy. Their traditional homeland is in and around Onondaga County, New York...

s. With the formation of the Haudenosaunee, they settled and lived the farthest west of all the nations within the Haudenosaunee. Other nations called them Seneca after their principal village of Osininka. Since "Osininka" sounds like the Anishinaabe word Asinikaa(n), meaning "Those at the Place Full of Stones", this gave rise to further confusion. Non-Haudenosaunee nations confused the Seneca nation's name with that of the Oneida nation's endonym Onyota'a:ka, meaning "People of the Standing Stone."

The similarity to the name of the Roman statesman Seneca
Seneca the Younger
Lucius Annaeus Seneca was a Roman Stoic philosopher, statesman, dramatist, and in one work humorist, of the Silver Age of Latin literature. He was tutor and later advisor to emperor Nero...

 is entirely coincidental.


The Seneca traditionally lived in what is now New York between the Genesee River
Genesee River
The Genesee River is a North American river flowing northward through the Twin Tiers of Pennsylvania and New York. The river provided the original power for the Rochester area's 19th century mills and still provides hydroelectric power for downtown Rochester....

 and Canandaigua Lake
Canandaigua Lake
Canandaigua Lake is the fourth largest of the Finger Lakes, in the U.S. state of New York. The city of Canandaigua is located at the northern shore of the lake and the village of Naples is just a few miles south of the southern end...

. The dating of an oral tradition mentioning a solar eclipse yields 1142AD as the year for the Seneca joining the Iroquois
The Iroquois , also known as the Haudenosaunee or the "People of the Longhouse", are an association of several tribes of indigenous people of North America...

 (Haudenosaunee). Some recent archaeological evidence indicates their territory eventually extended to the Allegheny River
Allegheny River
The Allegheny River is a principal tributary of the Ohio River; it is located in the Eastern United States. The Allegheny River joins with the Monongahela River to form the Ohio River at the "Point" of Point State Park in Downtown Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania...

 in present-day northwestern Pennsylvania, particularly after the Iroquois destroyed both the Wenrohronon
The Wenrohronon or Wenro were a little-known indigenous people of North America originally from western New York and northwestern Pennsylvania. They appear to have inhabited the upper Allegheny River valley, between the territories of the Seneca and the Neutrals...

 and Erie
Erie (tribe)
The Erie were an Native American people historically living on the south shore of Lake Erie. An Iroquoian group, they lived in what is now western New York, northwestern Pennsylvania, and northern Ohio...

 nations, who were native to the area. The Seneca were by far the most populous of the Haudenosaunee Nations, numbering "about four thousand souls" by the seventeenth century.

Seneca villages were located as far east as current-day Schuyler County
Schuyler County, New York
As of the census of 2000, there were 19,224 people, 7,374 households, and 5,191 families residing in the county. The population density was 58 people per square mile . There were 9,181 housing units at an average density of 28 per square mile...

, south into current Tioga
Tioga County, New York
As of the census of 2010, there were 51,125 people residing in the county, with 22,203 housing units, of these 20,350 occupied, 1,853 vacant. The population density was 98 people per square mile...

 and Chemung counties, north and east into Tompkins and Cayuga counties, and west into the Genesee Valley. The villages were the homes and headquarters of the Seneca. While the Seneca maintained substantial permanent settlements and raised agricultural crops in the vicinity of their villages, they also hunted widely through extensive areas. They prosecuted far-reaching military campaigns. The villages, where hunting and military campaigns were planned and executed, indicate clear aboriginal presence and hegemony in these areas.

The Seneca had two branches; the western and the eastern. Each branch distinct, they were individually incorporated and recognized by the Iroquois Confederacy Council. The western Seneca lived predominately in and around the Genesee River, gradually moving west and southwest along the Erie and Niagara rivers, then south along the Allegheny River
Allegheny River
The Allegheny River is a principal tributary of the Ohio River; it is located in the Eastern United States. The Allegheny River joins with the Monongahela River to form the Ohio River at the "Point" of Point State Park in Downtown Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania...

 into Pennsylvania. The eastern Seneca lived predominantly south of Seneca Lake in and around current-day Corning
Corning (city), New York
Corning is a city in Steuben County, New York, United States, on the Chemung River. The population was 10,842 at the 2000 census. It is named for Erastus Corning, an Albany financier and railroad executive who was an investor in the company that developed the community.- Overview :The city of...

. They moved south and east into Pennsylvania and the western Catskill
Catskill Mountains
The Catskill Mountains, an area in New York State northwest of New York City and southwest of Albany, are a mature dissected plateau, an uplifted region that was subsequently eroded into sharp relief. They are an eastward continuation, and the highest representation, of the Allegheny Plateau...


The west and north were under constant attack from their powerful Iroquoian brethren, the Huron. To the South, the Iroquoian-speaking tribes of the Andaste (Conestoga and Susquehannock) threatened constant warfare. The Algonkian
Algonquian peoples
The Algonquian are one of the most populous and widespread North American native language groups, with tribes originally numbering in the hundreds. Today hundreds of thousands of individuals identify with various Algonquian peoples...

 tribes of the Mohicans blocked access to the Hudson River
Hudson River
The Hudson is a river that flows from north to south through eastern New York. The highest official source is at Lake Tear of the Clouds, on the slopes of Mount Marcy in the Adirondack Mountains. The river itself officially begins in Henderson Lake in Newcomb, New York...

 in the east and northeast. In the southeast, the Algonkian tribes of the Delaware (Delaware, Minnisink and Esopus) threatened war from eastern Pennsylvania, New Jersey and the Lower Hudson.

The Seneca used the Genesee and Allegheny rivers, as well as the Great Indian War and Trading Path (the Seneca Trail), to travel from southern Lake Ontario into Pennsylvania and Ohio (Merrill, Arch. Land of the Senecas; Empire State Books, 1949, p 18-25). The eastern Seneca had territory just north of the intersection of the Chemung, Susquehanna, Tioga and Delaware rivers, which converged in Tioga. The rivers provided passage deep into all parts of eastern and western Pennsylvania, as well as east and northeast into the Delaware Water Gap
Delaware Water Gap
The Delaware Water Gap is on the border of New Jersey and Pennsylvania where the Delaware River cuts through a large ridge of the Appalachian Mountains...

 and the western Catskills. (Map 4 -Folts, James D. “The Westward Migration of the Munsee Indians in the Eighteenth Century", The Challenge: An Algonquian Peoples Seminar. Albany: New York State Bulletin No. 506, 2005. Pp 32)

Traditionally, the Seneca Nation's economy
Economy of the Iroquois
The economy of the Iroquois originally focused on communal production and combined elements of both horticulture and hunter-gatherer systems. The tribes of the Iroquois Confederacy and other Northern Iroquoian-speaking peoples, including the Huron, lived in the region including what is now New...

 was based on hunting and gathering activities, fishing and the cultivation of corn
Maize known in many English-speaking countries as corn or mielie/mealie, is a grain domesticated by indigenous peoples in Mesoamerica in prehistoric times. The leafy stalk produces ears which contain seeds called kernels. Though technically a grain, maize kernels are used in cooking as a vegetable...

, bean
Bean is a common name for large plant seeds of several genera of the family Fabaceae used for human food or animal feed....

s, and squash
Squash (fruit)
Squashes generally refer to four species of the genus Cucurbita, also called marrows depending on variety or the nationality of the speaker...

. These vegetables were the staple of the Haudenosaunee diet and were called "the three sisters
Three Sisters (agriculture)
The Three Sisters are the three main agricultural crops of various Native American groups in North America: squash, maize, and climbing beans ....

". Seneca women generally grew and harvested varieties of the three sisters, as well as gathered medicinal plants, roots, berries, nuts, and fruit. Seneca women held sole ownership of all the land and the homes, thus the women also tended to any domesticated animals such as dogs and turkeys. Women were in charge of the kinship groups called clans. The woman in charge of a clan was called the "clan mother". Despite the prominent position of women in Iroquois society, their influence on the diplomacy of the nation was limited. If the "clan mothers" did not agree with any major decisions made by the chiefs, they could eventually depose them.

Seneca men were generally in charge of locating and developing the town sites, including clearing the forest for the production of fields. Seneca men also spent a great deal of time hunting and fishing. This activity took them away from the towns or villages to well-known and productive hunting and fishing grounds for extended amounts of time. These hunting and fishing locations were altered and well maintained and not simply left to grow as "wild" lands. Seneca men maintained the traditional title of War Sachem
A sachem[p] or sagamore is a paramount chief among the Algonquians or other northeast American tribes. The two words are anglicizations of cognate terms from different Eastern Algonquian languages...

s within the Haudenosaunee. A Seneca war sachem was in charge of gathering the warriors of the Haudenosaunee and leading them into battle.

Seneca people lived in villages and towns. Archaeological excavations indicate that some of these villages were surrounded by palisade
A palisade is a steel or wooden fence or wall of variable height, usually used as a defensive structure.- Typical construction :Typical construction consisted of small or mid sized tree trunks aligned vertically, with no spacing in between. The trunks were sharpened or pointed at the top, and were...

s because of warfare. These towns were relocated every ten to twenty years as soil, game and other resources were depleted. During the nineteenth century, many Seneca adopted customs of their immediate American neighbors by building log cabin
Log cabin
A log cabin is a house built from logs. It is a fairly simple type of log house. A distinction should be drawn between the traditional meanings of "log cabin" and "log house." Historically most "Log cabins" were a simple one- or 1½-story structures, somewhat impermanent, and less finished or less...

s, practicing Christianity and participating in the local agricultural economy.

Contact with Europeans

During the colonial period, they became involved in the fur trade
North American Fur Trade
The North American fur trade was the industry and activities related to the acquisition, exchange, and sale of animal furs in the North American continent. Indigenous peoples of different regions traded among themselves in the Pre-Columbian Era, but Europeans participated in the trade beginning...

, first with the Dutch and then with the British. This served to increase hostility with other native groups, especially their traditional enemy, the Huron, an Iroquoian tribe in New France
New France
New France was the area colonized by France in North America during a period beginning with the exploration of the Saint Lawrence River by Jacques Cartier in 1534 and ending with the cession of New France to Spain and Great Britain in 1763...

 near Lake Simcoe
Lake Simcoe
Lake Simcoe is a lake in Southern Ontario, Canada, the fourth-largest lake wholly in the province, after Lake Nipigon, Lac Seul, and Lake Nipissing. At the time of the first European contact in the 17th century the lake was called Ouentironk by the Huron natives...


In 1609 the French allied with the Huron and set out to destroy the Iroquois. The Iroquois-Huron war raged until approximately 1650. The Confederacy, however, grew in power and determined to unify all Iroquois-speaking people while vanquishing all enemies. By the winter of 1648 the Confederacy, led by the Seneca, fought deep into Canada and surrounded the capital of Huronia. Weakened by population losses due to smallpox
Smallpox was an infectious disease unique to humans, caused by either of two virus variants, Variola major and Variola minor. The disease is also known by the Latin names Variola or Variola vera, which is a derivative of the Latin varius, meaning "spotted", or varus, meaning "pimple"...

 epidemics as well as warfare, the Huron unconditionally surrendered. They pledged allegiance to the Seneca as their protector. The Seneca subjugated the Huron survivors and sent them to assimilate in the Seneca homelands. (Parker at pp 36–52; Merrill at pp. 78–83.)

Led by the Seneca, the Confederacy began a near 35-year period of conquest over surrounding tribes following the defeat of its most powerful enemy, the Huron. In 1650 the Seneca attacked and defeated the Neutrals to their west. In 1653 the Seneca attacked and defeated the Erie to their southwest. Both tribes were subjugated to the Seneca and relocated to the Seneca homeland. The Seneca then inhabited the vanquished tribe’s traditional territories in western New York. (Parker at pp 36–52; Merrill at pp. 78–83.)

In 1675 the Seneca defeated the Andaste/Susquehannock to the south and south east. The Confederacy’s hegemony extended along the frontier from Canada to Ohio, deep into Pennsylvania, along the Mohawk Valley and into the lower Hudson in the east. They sought peace with the New England Mohegan
The Mohegan tribe is an Algonquian-speaking tribe that lives in the eastern upper Thames River valley of Connecticut. Mohegan translates to "People of the Wolf". At the time of European contact, the Mohegan and Pequot were one people, historically living in the lower Connecticut region...

. Within the Confederacy, Seneca power and presence extended from Canada to Pittsburgh, east to Lackawanna and into the land of the Minnisink on the New York /New Jersey border. (Parker at pp 36–52; Merrill at pp. 78–83.)

The Seneca tried to curtail the encroachment of white settlers. This increased tensions and conflict with the French to the north and west, and the English and Dutch to the south and east. As buffers, the Confederacy resettled conquered tribes between them and the European settlers, with the greatest concentration of resettlements on the lower Susquehanna. (Folts at pp. 33–38).

In 1685, King Louis XIV of France sent Marquis de Denonville to govern New France in Quebec. Denonville set out to destroy the Seneca Nation and in 1687 landed a French armada at Irondequoit Bay. Denonville struck straight into the seat of Seneca power and destroyed many of its villages. Fleeing before the attack, the Seneca moved further west, east and south down the Susquehanna River. Although great damage was done to the Seneca home land, the Seneca’s military might was not appreciably weakened. The Confederacy and the Seneca moved into an alliance with the British in the east. (Houghton at 244).

Seneca's expanding influence and diplomacy

In and around 1600, the area currently comprising Sullivan, Ulster and Orange counties of New York was home to the Lenape
The Lenape are an Algonquian group of Native Americans of the Northeastern Woodlands. They are also called Delaware Indians. As a result of the American Revolutionary War and later Indian removals from the eastern United States, today the main groups live in Canada, where they are enrolled in the...

 Indians. The Lenape nation was Algonkian
Algonquian languages
The Algonquian languages also Algonkian) are a subfamily of Native American languages which includes most of the languages in the Algic language family. The name of the Algonquian language family is distinguished from the orthographically similar Algonquin dialect of the Ojibwe language, which is a...

-speaking and made up of the Delaware, Minnisink and Esopus tribes. These tribes would later become known as the Munsees. (Folts at pp 32) The Munsees inhabited large tracts of land from the middle Hudson into the Delaware Water Gap, and into north east Pennsylvania and North West New Jersey. The Esopus inhabited the Mid-Hudson valley (Sullivan and Ulster counties). The Minnisink inhabited North West New Jersey. The Delaware inhabited the southern Susquehanna and Delaware water gaps. The Minnisink-Esopus trail, today’s Route 209, helped tie this world together.

To the west of the Delaware nation was the Iroquoian-speaking Andaste/Susquehannock. To the east of the Delaware Nation lay the encroaching peoples of the Dutch New Netherland. From Manhattan, up through the Hudson, the settlers were interested in trading furs with the Susquehannock in and around current Lancaster, Pennsylvania. As early as 1626, the Susquehannock were struggling to get past the Delaware to trade with the Dutch in Manhattan. In 1634 war broke out between the Delaware and the Susquehannock, and by 1638 the defeated Delaware became tributaries to the Susquehanna.

The Confederacy to the north was growing in strength and numbers, and the Seneca, as the most numerous and adventurous, began to travel extensively. Eastern Senecas traveled down the Chemung River to the Susquehanna River. At Tioga the Seneca had access to every corner of Munsee country. Seneca warriors traveled the Forbidden Path south to Tioga to the Great Warrior Path to Scranton and then east over the Minnisink Path through the Lorde’s valley to Minnisink. The Delaware river path went straight south through the ancient Indian towns of Cookhouse, Cochecton and Minnisink where it became the Minsi Path. (Map 5 Paul A. W. Wallace, Indian Paths of Pennsylvania (Harrisburg, Pa: Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission, 1965)).

Utilizing these ancient highways, the Seneca exerted influence in what is today Ulster and Sullivan Counties from the Dutch Period of the Colonies history onward. Historical evidence demonstrating Seneca Indian presence in the Lower Catskills includes:

In 1657 and 1658 the Seneca visited as diplomats, Dutch Colonial officials in New Amsterdam (Edmund Bailey O’Callaghan and Berthonl Fernow, Eds., Documents Relative to the Colonial History of the State of New York (Albany: Weed, Parsons, 1881) [hereafter NYCD], 13:184

In 1659 and 1660 the Seneca interceded in the First Esopus War, which raged between the Dutch and Esopus at current-day Kingston. The Seneca chief urged Stuyvesant to end the bloodshed and “return the captured Esopus savages.”(NYCD 13:114,121,124,177-178, 184; See also The Senecas and the First Esopus War. NYCD, 13: 184-185.) In 1663 after the Second Esopus War, Minnisink chief reported that the Seneca threatened to attack him (NYCD, 13:361.)

In 1675, after a decade of warfare between the Iroquois (mainly the Mohawk and Oneida) and the Andaste/Susquehannock, the Seneca finally succeeded in vanquishing their last remaining great enemy.(Parker at pp 49) Survivors were colonized in settlements along the Susquehanna river and were assimilated into the Seneca and Cayuga tribes (Folts at pp 31–47).

In 1694, Captain Arent Schuyler, in an official report, described the Minnisink chiefs as being fearful of being attacked by the Seneca because of not paying wampum tribute to these Iroquois. (NYCD, 4:98-99 Seneca Power Over the Minnisink Indians)

Around 1700 the upper Delaware watershed of New York and Pennsylvania became home of the Minnisink Indians moving north and northwest from New Jersey, and of Esopus Indians moving west from the Mid-Hudson valley.(Folts at pp 34)

By 1712 the Esopus Indians were reported to have to the east Pepacton branch of the Delaware River, on the western slopes of the Catskill Mountains. (Folts at pp 34)

From 1720 to the 1750s the Seneca resettled and assimilated the Munsee into the Confederacy and the Nation. (Folts at pp 34)

In 1756 the Confederacy directed the Munsee to settle in a new town on the Chemung called Assinisink, at present day Corning, located in Seneca territory. The Seneca received some of the Munsees’ war prisoners as part of the negotiations. (Folts at pp 34)

At a peace conference in Easton, Pennsylvania in 1758, the Seneca chief Tagashata demonstrated control over affairs of the belligerent Munsee and Minnisink by requiring them to conclude a peace with the colonists and “take the hatchet out of your heads, and bury it under ground, where it shall always rest and never be taken up again,” A large delegation of Iroquois attended this meeting and demonstrated that the Munsee were now under the protection of the tribe. (Herbert C. Kraft, The Lenape: Archaeology, History and Ethnography (Newark, N.J.:New Jersey Historical Society, 1986), p. 230.)

In 1759, colonial records indicate that in order to have diplomatic success with the Munsees, negotiators had to speak with the Seneca. (Robert S. Grumet, “The Minnisink Settlements: Native American Identity and Society in the Munsee Heartland, 1650-1778.” In: the People of Minnisink, David Orr and Douglas Campana, Eds. (Philadelphia: National Park Service, 1991), p. 236. (Grumet cites the Colonial Records of Pennsylvania, 8: 416)) By the end of the eighteenth century, the Munsee’s who had previously migrated to the upper Susquehanna region were living in Seneca communities.

Despite the French military campaigns, Seneca power remained far reaching at the beginning of the 18th century. Gradually, the Seneca began to ally themselves with the British and Dutch against France’s ambitions in the new world. By 1760 during the Seven Years War, the British, with the help of the Seneca, captured Fort Niagara
Fort Niagara
Fort Niagara is a fortification originally built to protect the interests of New France in North America. It is located near Youngstown, New York, on the eastern bank of the Niagara River at its mouth, on Lake Ontario.-Origin:...

 from the French. The Seneca experienced relative peace from 1760 to 1775. When war finally broke out between the British and the colonists, the Seneca attempted to remain neutral. Neutrality was futile. While routing the British at Fort Stanwix, the colonists killed many Seneca onlookers. (Merrill at pp 90–97.)

Interactions with the United States

In 1778, Seneca fought on the side of the British in the revolutionary war and participated in well planned raids prosecuted by Mohawk Chief Joseph Brant
Joseph Brant
Thayendanegea or Joseph Brant was a Mohawk military and political leader, based in present-day New York, who was closely associated with Great Britain during and after the American Revolution. He was perhaps the most well-known American Indian of his generation...

 on Woodstock and Warwarsing. These raids, including the Battle of Minnisink, were carefully planned raids on a trail laid out “from the Susquehanna to the Delaware Valley and over the Pine Hill to the Esopus Country.”

During the American Revolutionary War, some Senecas sided with the British and Loyalists. As a result of several massacres they inflicted against American towns, in 1779 they were attacked by United States forces as part of the Sullivan Expedition
Sullivan Expedition
The Sullivan Expedition, also known as the Sullivan-Clinton Expedition, was an American campaign led by Major General John Sullivan and Brigadier General James Clinton against Loyalists and the four nations of the Iroquois who had sided with the British in the American Revolutionary War.The...

. To neutralize the Confederacy, General Washington sent an expedition of 3000 to 5000 men under the command of General John Sullivan
John Sullivan
John Sullivan was the third son of Irish immigrants, a United States general in the Revolutionary War, a delegate in the Continental Congress and a United States federal judge....

 up the waterways and paths used by the Seneca. Sullivan's Expedition drove straight up the Susquehanna to Elmira, pushing the Seneca to defeat at Fort Niagara. From this point on, the nation settled in new villages along Buffalo Creek, Tonawanda Creek, and Cattaraugus Creek in western New York. These settlements eventually became the nation’s reservations after the Revolutionary War as part of the Treaty of Fort Stanwix
Treaty of Fort Stanwix
The Treaty of Fort Stanwix was an important treaty between North American Indians and the British Empire. It was signed in 1768 at Fort Stanwix, located in present-day Rome, New York...

 in 1784. (Merrill at pp 90–97.)

On July 8, 1788, the Seneca (along with some Mohawk, Oneida, Onondaga, and Cayuga tribes) sold rights to land
Phelps and Gorham Purchase
The Phelps and Gorham Purchase was the purchase in 1788 of the pre-emptive right to some 6,000,000 acres of land in western New York State for $1,000,000 . This was all land in western New York west of Seneca Lake between Lake Ontario and the Pennsylvania border...

 east of the Genesee River
Genesee River
The Genesee River is a North American river flowing northward through the Twin Tiers of Pennsylvania and New York. The river provided the original power for the Rochester area's 19th century mills and still provides hydroelectric power for downtown Rochester....

 in New York to Oliver Phelps
Oliver Phelps
Oliver Phelps was born in Poquonock, Connecticut and moved to Suffield, Connecticut, where he apprenticed to a local merchant. He shortly thereafter became a tavern keeper in Granville, Massachusetts. During the Revolution he was Deputy Commissary of the Continental Army and served until the end...

 and Nathaniel Gorham
Nathaniel Gorham
Nathaniel Gorham was the fourteenth President of the United States in Congress assembled, under the Articles of Confederation...

 of Massachusetts.

On November 11, 1794, the Seneca (along with the other Haudenosaunee nations) signed the Treaty of Canandaigua
Treaty of Canandaigua
The Treaty of Canandaigua is a treaty signed after the American Revolutionary War between the Grand Council of the Six Nations and President George Washington representing the United States of America....

 with the United States, agreeing to peaceful relations. On September 15, 1797 at the Treaty of Big Tree
Treaty of Big Tree
Treaty of Big Tree was a formal treaty, held from August 20, 1797 until September 16, 1797, between the Seneca nation and the United States of America. The delegates for both parties met at the residence of William Wadsworth, an early pioneer of the area and Captain of the local militia, in what is...

, the Seneca sold their lands west of the Genesee River, retaining ten reservations
Indian reservation
An American Indian reservation is an area of land managed by a Native American tribe under the United States Department of the Interior's Bureau of Indian Affairs...

 for themselves. The sale opened up the rest of Western New York
Western New York
Western New York is the westernmost region of the state of New York. It includes the cities of Buffalo, Rochester, Niagara Falls, the surrounding suburbs, as well as the outlying rural areas of the Great Lakes lowlands, the Genesee Valley, and the Southern Tier. Some historians, scholars and others...

 for settlement by European Americans. On January 15, 1838, the US and some Seneca leaders signed the Treaty of Buffalo Creek
Treaty of Buffalo Creek
-1788:The Treaty of Buffalo Creek should not be confused with the Phelps and Gorham Purchase of lands east of the Genesee River in New York, which occurred at Buffalo Creek on July 8, 1788...

, by which the Seneca were to relocate to a tract of land west of the state of Missouri
Missouri is a US state located in the Midwestern United States, bordered by Iowa, Illinois, Kentucky, Tennessee, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Kansas and Nebraska. With a 2010 population of 5,988,927, Missouri is the 18th most populous state in the nation and the fifth most populous in the Midwest. It...

, but most refused to go. The majority of the Seneca in New York formed a modern elected government, the Seneca Nation of Indians, in 1848. The Tonawanda Band of Seneca Indians
Tonawanda Band of Seneca Indians
The Tonawanda Band of Seneca Indians maintained the traditional form of government by Seneca chiefs and clan mothers after the Alleghany and Cattaraugus Reservations broke away and formed the Seneca Nation of Indians in 1848...

 split off, choosing to keep a traditional form of tribal government. Both tribes are federally recognized in the United States.


While it is not known exactly how many Seneca there are, approximately ten thousand Seneca live near Lake Erie.

About 7,800 people are citizens of the Seneca Nation of Indians. These enrolled members live or work on five reservations in New York: the Allegany
Allegany Reservation, New York
Allegany Reservation is an American Indian reservation in Cattaraugus County, New York, United States. The population was 1,099 at the 2000 census. The reservation is primarily occupied by members of the Seneca of the Iroquois, but a smaller number of Cayuga, another Iroquois tribe, also reside...

 (which contains the city of Salamanca
Salamanca (city), New York
Salamanca is a city in Cattaraugus County, New York, United States, located inside the Allegany Indian Reservation. The population was 6,097 at the 2000 census.-Geography:...

); the Cattaraugus
Cattaraugus Reservation
Cattaraugus Reservation is an Indian reservation of the Seneca Indian Nation of the Iroquois Confederacy located in New York. As of the 2000 census, the Indian reservation had a total population of 2,412. Its total area is about 34.4 mi²...

 near Gowanda, New York
Gowanda, New York
Gowanda is a village in New York in the United States and lies partly in Erie County and partly in Cattaraugus County. The population was 2,842 at the 2000 census. The name is a local native term meaning "almost surrounded by hills" or "beautiful place among the hills...

; the Buffalo Creek Territory
Buffalo Creek Reservation
The Buffalo Creek Reservation was a tract of land surrounding Buffalo Creek in the central portion of Erie County, New York. It contained approximately of land and was set aside for the Native Americans of the region...

 located in downtown Buffalo, NY; the Niagara Falls Territory located in Niagara Falls, New York
Niagara Falls, New York
Niagara Falls is a city in Niagara County, New York, United States. As of the 2010 census, the city had a total population of 50,193, down from the 55,593 recorded in the 2000 census. It is across the Niagara River from Niagara Falls, Ontario , both named after the famed Niagara Falls which they...

; and the Oil Springs Reservation
Oil Springs Reservation
Oil Springs Reservation is an Indian reservation of the Seneca tribe located in New York, USA. As of the 2010 census, the Indian reservation has one resident. Although the reservation is controlled by the Seneca tribe, as of 2005 no tribal members actually live on the Oil Springs Reservation. It is...

, near Cuba, New York
Cuba (town), New York
Cuba is a town in Allegany County, New York, USA. The Town lies on the western border of Allegany County, with the Village of Cuba within its borders. Cuba is approximately an hour and a half drive south of Rochester and Buffalo, New York...

. Few Seneca reside at the Oil Springs, Buffalo Creek, or Niagara Territories due to the small amount of land at each. The last two territories are held and used specifically for gaming casinos.

Another 1,200 or more people are citizens of the Tonawanda Band of Seneca Indians
Tonawanda Band of Seneca Indians
The Tonawanda Band of Seneca Indians maintained the traditional form of government by Seneca chiefs and clan mothers after the Alleghany and Cattaraugus Reservations broke away and formed the Seneca Nation of Indians in 1848...

 and live on the Tonawanda Reservation near Akron, New York
Akron, New York
Akron, New York is a village in Erie County, New York, United States. The population was listed as 3,085 in the 2000 census. The name means a high place. It is part of the Buffalo–Niagara Falls Metropolitan Statistical Area....

. Other Seneca are members of the Seneca-Cayuga Tribe of Oklahoma
Seneca-Cayuga Tribe of Oklahoma
The Seneca–Cayuga Tribe of Oklahoma is a federally recognized tribe of Seneca and Cayuga people, based in Oklahoma, United States. They have a tribal jurisdictional area in the northeast corner of Oklahoma are headquartered in Grove, Oklahoma.- History :...

 who live near Miami, Oklahoma
Miami, Oklahoma
Miami is a city in Ottawa County, Oklahoma, United States. As of 2009, the population estimate was 12,910. It is the county seat of Ottawa County. The city is named after the Miami tribe...


Some 10,000 to 25,000 Seneca are citizens of Six Nations and reside on the Grand River Territory near Brantford, Ontario
Brantford, Ontario
Brantford is a city located on the Grand River in Southern Ontario, Canada. While geographically surrounded by the County of Brant, the city is politically independent...

, Canada. They are descendants of Seneca who migrated to Canada after the American Revolution, where they were given land as allies of the British government.

Other enrolled members of the Seneca Nation live throughout the United States.

Kinzua Dam displacement

Begun in 1960, construction of the Kinzua Dam
Kinzua Dam
The Kinzua Dam, in the Allegheny National Forest in Warren County, Pennsylvania, is one of the largest dams in the United States east of the Mississippi River....

 on the Allegheny River
Allegheny River
The Allegheny River is a principal tributary of the Ohio River; it is located in the Eastern United States. The Allegheny River joins with the Monongahela River to form the Ohio River at the "Point" of Point State Park in Downtown Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania...

 forced the relocation of approximately 600 Seneca from 10000 acres (40.5 km²) of land which they had occupied under the 1794 Treaty of Canandaigua. They were relocated to Salamanca, New York
Salamanca (town), New York
Salamanca is a town in Cattaraugus County, New York, United States. The population was 544 at the 2000 census. The name is from a major investor in a local railroad....

, near the northern shore of the Allegheny Reservoir
Allegheny Reservoir
The Allegheny Reservoir is a reservoir along the Allegheny River in Pennsylvania and New York, USA. It was created in 1965 by the construction of the Kinzua Dam along the river.-History:...

, which covers land flooded by the dam. The Seneca did not want to relocate and appealed to the courts and President John F. Kennedy
John F. Kennedy
John Fitzgerald "Jack" Kennedy , often referred to by his initials JFK, was the 35th President of the United States, serving from 1961 until his assassination in 1963....

 to halt construction. The Seneca lost their court case, and in 1961, citing the immediate need for flood control, Kennedy denied their request.

Leased land disputes

In 1990 the Seneca Settlement Act resolved a long-running land dispute between the Seneca and the State of New York. The dispute centered around 99–year leases granted by the Seneca in 1890 for lands now in the city of Salamanca and nearby villages. The settlement cropped up again in the early 2000s, as issues arose over use of settlement lands for casino gaming operations.

Grand Island claims

On August 25, 1993, the Seneca filed suit in United States District Court to begin an action to reclaim land allegedly taken from it by New York without having gained required approval of the treaty by the United States government. The lands consisted of Grand Island
Grand Island, New York
Grand Island is a town and an island in Erie County, New York, USA. As of the 2010 census, the town population is 20,374. This represents an increase of 9.41% from the 2000 census figure . The current town name derives from the French name La Grande Île, as Grand Island is the largest island in...

 and several smaller islands in the Niagara River
Niagara River
The Niagara River flows north from Lake Erie to Lake Ontario. It forms part of the border between the Province of Ontario in Canada and New York State in the United States. There are differing theories as to the origin of the name of the river...

. In November 1993, the Tonawanda Band of Seneca Indians moved to join the claim as a plaintiff; it was granted standing as a plaintiff.

In 1998, the United States intervened in the lawsuits on behalf of the plaintiffs in the claim. This was to allow the claim to proceed against New York in light of its assertion of its immunity from suit under the Eleventh Amendment to the United States Constitution
Eleventh Amendment to the United States Constitution
The Eleventh Amendment to the United States Constitution, which was passed by the Congress on March 4, 1794, and was ratified on February 7, 1795, deals with each state's sovereign immunity. This amendment was adopted in order to overrule the U.S. Supreme Court's decision in Chisholm v...

. After extensive negotiations and pre-trial procedures, all parties to the claim moved for judgment as a matter of law.

By decision and order dated June 21, 2002, the trial court held that the Seneca ceded the subject lands to Great Britain in the 1764 treaties of peace after the French and Indian War (Seven Years' War). Thus the disputed lands were not owned by the Seneca at the time of the 1794 Treaty of Canandaigua. The court found that the state of New York's "purchase" of the lands from the Seneca in 1815 was intended to avoid conflict with them, but the state already owned it by virtue of Great Britain's defeat in the Revolution.

The Seneca appealed this decision. The United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit affirmed the trial court's decision on September 9, 2004. The Senecas then sought review of this decision by the US Supreme Court. On June 5, 2006, the Court declined to hear the case.

Thruway claims

On April 18, 2007, the Seneca Nation laid claim to a stretch of Interstate 90
Interstate 90
Interstate 90 is the longest Interstate Highway in the United States at . It is the northernmost coast-to-coast interstate, and parallels US 20 for the most part. Its western terminus is in Seattle, at Edgar Martinez Drive S. near Safeco Field and CenturyLink Field, and its eastern terminus is in...

 that crosses the Cattaraugus Reservation. They revoked their 1954 agreement that had granted the Interstate Highway System and New York State Thruway Authority permission to build the highway through the territory. The move was a direct shot at New York Governor Eliot Spitzer
Eliot Spitzer
Eliot Laurence Spitzer is an American lawyer, former Democratic Party politician, and political commentator. He was the co-host of In the Arena, a talk-show and punditry forum broadcast on CNN until CNN cancelled his show in July of 2011...

's attempts to collect taxes from businesses on Seneca territory.

The Seneca had previously brought suit against the state on the same basis. That was decided in favor of the state based on its assertion of sovereign immunity. In Magistrate Heckman's "Report and Recommendation", it was noted that the State of New York asserted its immunity from suit against both counts of the complaint. One count was the Seneca Tribe's challenge regarding the state's acquisition of Grand Island and other smaller islands in the Niagara River, and the second count challenged the state's thruway easement.

The United States was permitted to intervene on behalf of the Seneca Nation and the Tonawanda Band of Seneca Indians. The United States was directed to file an amended complaint that "clearly states the relief sought by the United States in this action." In this amended complaint, the United States did not seek any relief on behalf of the Seneca Nation relative to the thruway easement. By not seeking such relief in its amended complaint, the United States permitted the action relative to the thruway easement to be subject to dismissal based on New York's immunity from suit under the Eleventh Amendment to the US Constitution. On May 4, 2007, the Seneca Nation threatened to revoke its agreement of easement for Interstate 86
Interstate 86 (east)
Interstate 86 is an Interstate Highway that extends for through northwestern Pennsylvania and southern New York in the United States...


Diversified businesses

The Senecas have a diversified economy that relies on construction, recreation, tourism, retail sales, and have recently become involved in the gaming industry.

Several large construction companies are located on the Cattaraugus and Allegany Territories. There are also many smaller construction companies that are owned and operated by Seneca people. A considerable number of Seneca men work in some facet of the construction industry.

Recreation is one component of Seneca enterprises. The Highbanks Campground plays host to several thousand visitors every summer, as people take in the scenic vistas and enjoy the Allegheny Reservoir. Several thousand fishing licenses are sold each year to non-Seneca fishermen.
Many of these customers are tourists to the region. Tourism in the area often comes as a direct result of several major highways adjacent to or on the Seneca Nation Territories that provide ready accessibility to local, regional and national traffic. Many tourists visit the region during the autumn for the fall foliage.

A substantial portion of the Seneca economy revolves around retail sales. From sports apparel to candles to artwork to traditional crafts, the wide range of products for sale on Seneca Nation Territories reflect the diverse interest of Seneca Nation citizens.

Tax free gasoline and cigarette sales

The price advantage of the Senecas' ability to sell tax-free gasoline and cigarettes has created a boom in their economy, including many service stations along the state highways that run through the reservations as well as many internet cigarette stores. This, however, has raised the ire of competing business interests and the state government. Non-Indian service stations cannot compete with Seneca prices because of New York's high cigarette and gasoline taxes. The state of New York believes that the tribe's sales of cigarettes by Internet are illegal. It also believes that the state has the authority to tax non-Indians who patronize Seneca businesses, a principle which the Senecas reject.

Seneca President Barry Snyder has defended the price advantage as an issue of sovereignty. Secondly, he has cited the Treaty of Canandaigua
Treaty of Canandaigua
The Treaty of Canandaigua is a treaty signed after the American Revolutionary War between the Grand Council of the Six Nations and President George Washington representing the United States of America....

 and Treaty of Buffalo Creek
Treaty of Buffalo Creek
-1788:The Treaty of Buffalo Creek should not be confused with the Phelps and Gorham Purchase of lands east of the Genesee River in New York, which occurred at Buffalo Creek on July 8, 1788...

 as the basis of Senecas' exemption from collecting taxes on cigarettes to pay the state. The Appellate Division of the New York Supreme Court, Third Department rejected this conclusion. In that decision the court held that the provisions of the treaty regarding taxation was only with regard to property taxes. The New York Court of Appeals on December 1, 1994 affirmed the lower court's decision.

The Senecas have refused to extend these benefits and price advantages to non-Indians, in their own words "has little sympathy for outsiders" who desire to do so, and have actively prosecuted non-Indians who have attempted to claim the price advantages Indians receive; one well-known case involved that of Little Valley businessman Lloyd Long, who operated two Uni-Mart
Uni-Mart is a Pennsylvania-based company that owns, operates and franchises hundreds of convenience stores in the Mid-Atlantic region of the United States....

s on the reservation under the ownership of a Seneca woman, but was arrested by federal authorities at the behest of the Seneca Nation and eventually ordered to pay over one million dollars in restitution and serve five years on probation.

In 1997, New York State attempted to enforce taxation of Indian gasoline and cigarettes. The attempt was thwarted after numerous Senecas protested by setting fire to tires and cutting off traffic to Interstate 90 and New York State Route 17
New York State Route 17
New York State Route 17 is a state highway that extends for through the Southern Tier and Downstate regions of New York in the United States...

 (the future Interstate 86).

Former Attorney General Eliot Spitzer attempted to cut off the Seneca Tribe's internet cigarette sales. His office attempted to negotiate deals directly with credit card companies and delivery services to reject handling cigarette purchases by consumers. Another attempt at collecting taxes on gasoline and cigarettes sold to non-Indians was set to begin March 1, 2006; but it was tabled, much to the chagrin of Spitzer and the state legislature, by the State Department of Taxation and Finance.

Shortly after March 1, 2006, other parties began proceedings to compel the State of New York to enforce its tax laws on sales to non-Indians on Indian land. Seneca County, New York
Seneca County, New York
As of the census of 2000, there were 33,342 people, 12,630 households, and 8,626 families residing in the county. The population density was 103 people per square mile . There were 14,794 housing units at an average density of 46 per square mile...

 began a proceeding which was dismissed. Similarly, the New York State Association of Convenience Stores began a proceeding, which was also dismissed. Based on the dismissal of these proceedings, Daniel Warren, a member and officer of Upstate Citizens for Equality
Upstate Citizens for Equality
The Upstate Citizens for Equality is a group based in Verona, New York that opposes the Indian Land Claim and what they see as flawed Federal Indian Policy. UCE currently has three chapters with a combined membership of around 10,000.-Legal actions:...

, moved to vacate the judgment dismissing his 2002 state court action. The latter was dismissed because the court ruled that he had lack of standing.

Governor David Paterson
David Paterson
David Alexander Paterson is an American politician who served as the 55th Governor of New York, from 2008 to 2010. During his tenure he was the first governor of New York of African American heritage and also the second legally blind governor of any U.S. state after Bob C. Riley, who was Acting...

 included $62 million of revenue in his budget from the proposed collection of these taxes. He signed a new law requiring that manufacturers and wholesalers swear under penalty of perjury that they are not selling untaxed cigarettes.

In response to this, the Senecas announced plans to collect a toll from all who travel the length of I-90 that goes through their reservation. In 2007 the Senecas rescinded the agreement that permitted construction of the thruway and its attendant easement through their reservation. Some commentators have contended that this agreement was not necessary or moot because the United States was already granted free right of passage across the Senecas' land in the Treaty of Canandaigua.

A law that would bar any tax-exempt organization in New York from receiving tax-free cigarettes went into effect June 21, 2011. The Seneca nation has repeatedly appealed the decision, continuing to do so as of June 2011, but has yet to overturn the law. The state has only enforced the law on cigarette brands produced by non-Indian companies (including all major national brands), having left brands that are entirely tribally produced and sold (which, being mostly lower-end and lower-cost brands, have always made up the bulk of Seneca cigarette sales) out of its jurisdiction for the time being.


With the US Supreme Court decision ruling that Native Americans could establish gaming on reservations, the Seneca Nation began to develop its gambling industry during the late 1980s. It began, as states and other tribes did, with bingo.

In 2002, the Seneca Nation of Indians signed a Gaming Compact with the State of New York to cooperate in the establishment of three class III gambling facilities (casinos). It established the Seneca Gaming Corporation to manage its operations. Currently the Seneca Nation of Indians owns and operates two casinos: one in Niagara Falls, New York called Seneca Niagara
Seneca Niagara Casino
Seneca Niagara Casino & Hotel is a casino located in Niagara Falls, New York and was built to compete with Casino Niagara and Niagara Fallsview Casino Resort in Niagara Falls, Ontario...

 and the other in Salamanca called Seneca Allegany.

Construction began on a third, the Seneca Buffalo Creek Casino, in downtown Buffalo. In 2007 the Seneca opened a temporary casino on its land in Buffalo after federal approval, to satisfy its agreement with the state. Some citizens have opposed all Indian gambling, but especially the Buffalo location. Additional controversy has been engendered because there were questions about whether the Seneca-controlled land met other status criteria for gambling.

Some civic groups, including a "broad coalition of Buffalo's political, business, and cultural leaders", have opposed the Seneca Nation's establishment of a casino in Buffalo. They believe the operations will adversely affect the economic and social environment of the already struggling city. Opponents include the Upstate Citizens for Equality and Citizens for a Better Buffalo, who recently won a lawsuit challenging the legality of the proposed casino in Buffalo, because of the status of the land. On July 8, 2008, United States District Judge William M. Skretny issued a decision holding that the Seneca Buffalo Creek Casino is not on gaming-eligible lands. The National Indian Gaming Commission
National Indian Gaming Commission
The National Indian Gaming Commission is an independent federal regulatory agency within the Department of the Interior. Congress established this agency through the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act in 1988. The agency has the duty to "promulgate such regulations and guidelines as it deems...

 is reviewing proposed Seneca regulations and weighing its appeal options.

The Seneca were given five days to respond or to face fines and a forced shutdown. They have indicated they refuse to comply with the commission's order and will appeal.

Given the declining economic situation, in summer 2008 the Seneca halted construction on the new casino in Buffalo. In December 2008 they laid off 210 employees from the three casinos.


The nation has established an official broadcasting arm, "Seneca Broadcasting," for the purposes of applying for and purchasing radio station licenses. The company currently owns one commercial FM radio station (broadcasting at 105.9 MHz) licensed to the village of Little Valley
Little Valley (village), New York
Little Valley is a village in Cattaraugus County, New York, USA. The population was 1,130 at the 2000 census.The Village of Little Valley is in the northwest corner of the Town of Little Valley....

, which the company purchased from Randy Michaels
Randy Michaels
Randy Michaels is an American broadcasting executive and a member of the National Association of Broadcasters TV Board.Randy Michaels has been involved in large market radio broadcasting since the early 1970s, first in front of the mike as evening personality at adult contemporary WGR in Buffalo...

 in early 2009. That station, known as WGWE
WGWE is an FM radio station licensed to Little Valley, New York. The station, with a tower atop Fourth Street in the village of Little Valley, broadcasts a classic hits format on 105.9 MHz and operates under the ownership of the Seneca Nation of Indians; the Seneca nation purchased WGWE's...

, signed on February 1, 2010 from studios in the city of Salamanca with a classic hits
Classic hits
Classic hits is a radio format which generally includes rock and pop music from 1964 to 1989. The term is sometimes erroneously used as a synonym for the adult hits format, but is more accurately characterized as a contemporary style of the oldies format...

 format operated by former WPIG
WPIG is an FM radio station located in Olean, New York. Branded as the "Big Pig," "The Pig" or simply by its frequency and callsigns at times, the station operates at 95.7 MHz on the FM dial and operates a broad-based country music format...

 disc jockey Mike "Smitty" Smith. An earlier application, for a noncommercial FM station at 89.3 in Irving, New York
Irving, New York
Irving is a hamlet located in Chautauqua County, New York, USA. It is located near the east town line and the eastern county line in the Town of Hanover. US Route 20 and New York State Route 5 pass through the hamlet, which is also next to Cattaraugus Creek; New York State Route 438 terminates just...

, ran into mutual exclusivity problems with out-of-town religious broadcasters.


Many Seneca people are employed in the local economy of the region as professionals, including; lawyers, professors, physicians, police officers, teachers, social workers, nurses, and managers .

Notable Seneca

  • George Abrams
    George Abrams
    George Allen Abrams was a Major League Baseball pitcher who played for one season. He pitched in three games for the Cincinnati Reds during the 1923 Cincinnati Reds season.-External links:...

  • Chief John Big Tree
    Chief John Big Tree
    Chief John Big Tree , born Isaac Johnny John, was a member of the Seneca Nation and an actor who appeared in 59 films between 1915 and 1950....

  • Duwayne 'Duce' Bowen
  • Cornplanter
    Gaiänt'wakê was a Seneca war-chief. He was the son of a Seneca mother, Aliquipiso, and a Dutch father, Johannes Abeel. He also carried the name John Abeel after his fur trader father...

  • Jesse Cornplanter
    Jesse Cornplanter
    Jesse J. Cornplanter was a Seneca artist and author. His Seneca name was Hayonhwonhish. As an author he wrote Legends of the Longhouse, which records many Iroquois traditional stories.-Personal:...

  • Deerfoot (Lewis Bennett)
  • Governor Blacksnake
  • Guyasuta
    Guyasuta was an important leader of the Seneca people in the second half of the eighteenth century, playing a central role in the diplomacy and warfare of that era...

  • Half-King
  • Traynor Ora Halftown
    Traynor Ora Halftown
    Traynor Ora Halftown , better known as "Chief Halftown", was an entertainer who hosted a children's show that aired on WFIL-TV in Philadelphia from 1950 to 1999.....

  • Handsome Lake
    Handsome Lake
    Handsome Lake was a Seneca religious leader of the Iroquois people. He was also half-brother to Cornplanter....

  • George Heron
    George Heron
    George D. Heron was president of the Seneca Nation of Indians from 1958 to 1960 and again from 1962 to 1964....

  • Robert Hoag
  • Willam C. Hoag
  • Mary Jemison
    Mary Jemison
    Mary Jemison was an American frontierswoman and an adopted Seneca. When she was in her teens, she was captured in what is now Adams County, Pennsylvania, from her home along Marsh Creek, and later chose to remain a Seneca....

  • Lionel R. John
  • Little Beard
    Little Beard
    Little Beard, Si-gwa-ah-doh-gwih , was a Seneca chief who participated in the American Revolutionary War on the side of Great Britain...

  • Solomon McLane
  • Catherine Montour
  • Arthur C. Parker
    Arthur C. Parker
    Arthur Caswell Parker was an American archaeologist, historian, folklorist, museologist and noted authority on American Indian culture. Of Seneca and Scots-English descent, he was director of the Rochester Museum of Arts and Sciences from 1924 to 1945, when he developed its holdings and research...

  • Ely S. Parker
    Ely S. Parker
    Ely Samuel Parker , was a Seneca attorney, engineer, and tribal diplomat. He was commissioned a lieutenant colonel during the American Civil War, when he served as adjutant to General Ulysses S. Grant. He wrote the final draft of the Confederate surrender terms at Appomattox...

  • Isaac Newton Parker
  • Frank Patterson
  • Sanford Plummer
    Sanford Plummer
    Sanford Plummer was a Seneca narrative watercolor painter from New York.-Background:Sanford Plummer was born on 1 November 1905 on the Allegany Reservation, Red House, Cattaraugus, New York. His parents were Clarence Plummer and Nellie Kennedy...

  • Red Jacket
    Red Jacket
    Red Jacket was a Native American Seneca orator and chief of the Wolf clan...

  • Sayenqueraghta
  • Cornelius Seneca
  • Martin Seneca Sr.
  • William Seneca
  • Grandmother Twylah Nitsch
  • Tyler Christopher

See also

  • Seneca language
    Seneca language
    Seneca is the language of the Seneca people, one of the Six Nations of the Iroquois League. About 10,000 Seneca live in the United States and Canada, primarily on reservations in western New York, with others living in Oklahoma and near Brantford, Ontario.-Phonology:Seneca words are written with...

  • Gaasyendietha
    Gaasyendietha, according to Seneca mythology, is a dragon that dwells in the deep areas of rivers and lakes of Canada, especially Lake Ontario. This dragon could fly on a trail of fire, and it could also spew fire....

  • Ganondagan State Historic Site
    Ganondagan State Historic Site
    Ganondagan State Historic Site also known as Boughton Hill is a New York State Native American historic site in Ontario County, New York in the USA. The historic site is in the Town of Victor, southwest of the Village of Victor...

  • Lewis H. Morgan
    Lewis H. Morgan
    Lewis Henry Morgan was a pioneering American anthropologist and social theorist, a railroad lawyer and capitalist. He is best known for his work on kinship and social structure, his theories of social evolution, and his ethnography of the Iroquois...

  • Seneca Mission Indian Church Grounds Desecration
    Seneca Mission Indian Church Grounds Desecration
    Seneca Mission was a former Christian mission originally located on the Buffalo Creek Reservation in south Buffalo, New York. The church grounds were desecrated by City of Buffalo contractors both in the late 19th century and in 2009.- History :...

  • Seneca Trail
  • Seneca Rocks
    Seneca Rocks
    Seneca Rocks is a large crag and local landmark in Pendleton County in the Eastern Panhandle of West Virginia, USA. It is easily visible and accessible along West Virginia Route 28 near U.S. Route 33 in the Spruce Knob-Seneca Rocks National Recreation Area of the Monongahela National Forest...

  • Eleventh Amendment to the United States Constitution
    Eleventh Amendment to the United States Constitution
    The Eleventh Amendment to the United States Constitution, which was passed by the Congress on March 4, 1794, and was ratified on February 7, 1795, deals with each state's sovereign immunity. This amendment was adopted in order to overrule the U.S. Supreme Court's decision in Chisholm v...

Further reading

  • Cadwallander Colden, The History of the Five Indian Nations: Depending on the Province of New York in America (New York: Cornell University Press, 1958). ISBN 0-8014-9086-3
  • Allen W. Trelease, Indian Affairs in Colonial New York: The Seventeenth Century (Bison Books, 1997). ISBN 0-8032-9431-X
  • Daniel K. Richter, The Ordeal of the Longhouse: The Peoples of the Iroquois League in the Era of European Colonization (North Carolina: University of North Carolina Press, 1992). ISBN 0-8078-4394-6
  • Francis Jennings, The Ambiguous Iroquois Empire: The Covenant Chain Confederation of Indian Tribes with English Colonies (New York: W. W. Norton & Company, 1984). ISBN 0-393-30302-0
  • Jeanne Winston Adler, Chainbreaker's War: A Seneca Chief Remembers the American Revolution (New York: Black Dome Press, 2002). ISBN 1-883789-33-8

External links

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