The Montana Historical Society is doing a two-month series called Montana History in 9 Easy Lessons. Each session will be live streamed. This week’s lesson is about Disintegration: Montana’s Tribal Nations in the Early Reservation Years through the 1934 Indian Reorganization Act. Between 1879 and 1934, the United States implemented a policy of assimilation aimed at dismantling tribal sovereignty and extinguishing tribal identities. One aspect of this policy was the allotment in severalty of reservation lands, which checkerboarded Montana’s Indian reservations. This fragmentation of the physical landscape not only transferred a large percentage of treaty lands into white ownership but also generated long-lasting social, economic, and legal repercussions for tribes that intensified their cultural disintegration. About the speaker: Laura Ferguson earned her M.A. in Native American Studies at Montana State University. Since 2010, she has worked as an instructor of Native American Studies and Native American literature at Carroll College and Helena College and as a writer/editor of Indian Education for All education resources. Ferguson is a co-author of Beyond Schoolmarms and Madams, a collection of biographical sketches of Montana women. She currently works as an associate editor at the Montana Historical Society.
OPI Renewal units will be available. Contact Kirby Lambert at the Historical Society for more information.