Experiential Learning Project: Ojibwa Tribe

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Experiential Learning Project: Ojibwa Tribe
By Bryanna Austin
Diversity in Society

Going into the experiential learning project I was not really sure what to expect out of my project. It was a great experience, I have a whole new understanding about the life of the Ojibwa tribe, how they live, where they come from, and what their relationship with the United States is. The Ojibwa tribe also known as the Chippewa’s is one of the largest American Indian groups in North America. The nearly 150 different bands of Chippewa Indians living in their original homeland in United states mostly in Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Michigan also Southern Canada. Most Ojibwa communities live on their own reservations. They have their own laws, police, and services. In the early days of the Ojibwa tribe, they hunted and gathered and made moccasins. The men were hunters and went to war when necessary to protect their families and land, whereas the women took care of the children and farmed and cooked. Their homes were birch bark houses and in the plains they had tipis made from buffalo hide. Today most Ojibwa people live in modern housing, they traveled on feet or by birch bark canoes. The people of the Ojibwa tribe wanted to expand westward because of their desire to trade with the European and to find richer fur-bearing lands. In the 1730’s Ojibwa’s and Dakota started fighting over the region. Because of the fighting with the Dakota, the Ojibwa’s had trouble trusting the united state so they sided with the British they believed that the United States would try to take their land. The Ojibwa’s started reclaiming their treaty reserved rights in 1983. This treaty would give them the right to hunt and fish on the United Stated lands. The sault tribe signed their first treaty in 1820 call the 1820 treaty of Sault Ste. Marie. They then signed their second treaty in 1836 Treaty of Washington. They also signed the third one in 1855 treaty with Ottawa and Chippewa. The Ojibwa tribe (Chippewa) have said that they do not feel that a college with their tribe names as the mascot is abusive or hostile and so they have allowed Central Michigan to keep their tribe name as their mascot. Some tribes did not allow people to continue to use their namesake as a mascot for schools because they feel it is inappropriate because it is a “hostile and abusive” term to use as a mascot. They feel that it is a discriminative. Though not all Native Amercians live on the reservations now, a very large portion of the Ojibwa tribes live on reservations where they have their own laws and government. They are protected from federal government coming in and running over them. In the mid 1960’s they received federal recognition that would allow them to have their sovereignty back from the United States to live as a separate nation. The Ojibwa people overcame many obstacles to make it in the U.S. the English settlers overran the lands that they worked so hard to preserve, fought to get their land back, and teamed up with the British. It is really interesting the extent that people will go through to defend themselves and their land. Before starting this project I did not realize how hard the Ojibwa tribe had it. I thought that it was an easy life for them to maintain when in actuality it was a very hard life to sustain. The Ojibwa people are not the only ones