Finding Your Native American Heritage
Many people in the US and Canada have at least one Indian ancestral line in their family. Lots of people grew up hearing the family legend about a family member that was Native American.
Proving that legend to be true or false can be tough.
There are very little official records about early Native American. Starting your search on Native American Genealogy can be very challenging.
You will need to build a family tree using a multitude of resources. Research the deaths, births, and marriages of your family.
Use these records to build links from yourself back to your ancestors.
Next research documents that record Native Americans.
In some years the United States conducted separate censuses of Native Americans. In 1896 a Congressional law was passed that gave the Dawes Commission authority to oversee applications for tribal citizenship into the Five Civilized Tribes – Cherokee, Chickasaw, Choctaw, Creek, and Seminole.
Proving that you are related to a Native American is only the first step to being enrolled with a tribe. In the US there are over 500 federally recognized tribes. Each tribe has their own requirements for enrollment.
Use our Native American Tribal Directory to contact your tribe for more information.
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Begin building your family tree by using Ancestry.com's tool.
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Native American Genealogy Articles on PowWows.com
- How to get started tracing your family history?
- Top 5 Tools for Tracing Your Family History
- DNA Results vs Tribal Enrollment vs CDIB – What do they all mean?
- What is the Tribal Enrollment process?
- Top 5 Tips to Using Ancestry.com for Native American Info
- How to use the Dawes Roll to trace your American Indian Ancestry
- What you should know about DNA Testing for Family History Research
- What tribe am I from?
- How Much % Do I Need To Be For Each Tribe?
- Ancestry.com's American Indian Research Guide
- A Student's Guide to Native American Genealogy Book
- Discuss your questions on our Native American Genealogy Forum
Whether you’re trying to dig into the truth about that old family story of a distant ancestor who was a Native American or simply taking on a fascinating new hobby, genealogy can be very challenging.
This is particularly true for those with a Native American heritage, where records are often decentralized, sometimes poorly-kept, and other times just straight up impossible to find.
The good news?
While there will always be challenges researching your family’s tree and its Native American history as you go further back in time, it has never been so easy to get the information you need when researching your family’s Native American past.
Ancestry.com lets you search specifically for. Search by name, tribe, mixed blood, citizenship, tribal enrollment and more in one place, using the world’s most complete records.
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