MINOT AIR FORCE BASE, N.D. --
The month of November celebrates National American Indian Heritage Month.
In 1990, George H. W. Bush approved November as a month dedicated to reflect on the achievements and contributions of the American Indians. There are currently 567 federally recognized American Indian tribes across the United States.
More than half of the states are named from Indian origins. One of states include North Dakota as the name originates from the Dakotah/Lakotah tribes (also known as Sioux). “Dakotah” means “friend” or “ally” in the Lakota language. Other tribes, such as the Mandan, Hidatsa, Arikara, the Standing Rock Sioux and Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa tribes also inhabited North Dakota in the past centuries.
Today, American Indians make up 5 percent of the North Dakota population and their reservations are well spread out throughout the state. Almost 60 percent of their population reside in the reservations.
All across the United States, there are festivals, events and museums held to help raise awareness to the American Indian culture. In North Dakota, each reservation has an individual tribal college as well as facility displays for their tribe and culture.
The North Dakota Heritage Center and Museum located in Bismarck also has a gallery of American Indian culture and history.
For more information about special observances, please contact the Equal Opportunity Office at 723-2711.