Spirit Lake Sioux Tribe

Mailing Address

P.O. Box 359
Fort Totten, ND 58335

Contact Information





Cultural History

The Spirit Lake Tribe is a branch of the Sioux whose reservation area granted to them is located on the eastern central portion of North Dakota, in the Northern shores of the Devil's Lake. The tribe is also known as the Mini Wakan Oyate in their tribal language. They were also known to be the Devils Lake Sioux a few years back. The tribal reservation area was established in the year 1867. The establishment of the tribal reservation was in accordance with that of the treaty signed between the Sisseton Wahpeton Bands and that of the United States Government. The Sisseton Wahpeton is one of the seven other major divisions of the big tribe known as the Sioux. The Spirit Lake is a part of the Sisseton Wahpeton. The Sioux, on the other hand, is a relatively huge tribal group consists of seven communities who are closely linked by their lineage and the similarities both in culture and traditions. 

The tribal reservation encompasses a land area of 1,283.777 kilometers squared. The majority of the tribal territory is situated on the Benson County and the Eddy County. Aside from these lands, there are also smaller portions which aptly reach up to the Ramsey, the Wells and that of the Nelson Counties. In the year 1998, as stated by the Bureau of Indian Affairs, there are a recorded number of 5,086 enrolled tribal members. On the other hand, the year 2000 Census data revealed that there are 4,435 tribal members who are settled on the tribal reservation. In the same year, there was an unemployment rate of 47.3%. The largest of the communities in the reservation is that of the Fort Totten. There are four major communities in the area namely the Fort Totten, the St. Michael, the Crow Hill and the Wood Lake.  The Fort Totten, the largest community in the whole of the Spirit Lake reservation, is actually a census-designated place situated on the Benson County in North Dakota. There is a population of not less than 952 according to the Census data for the year 2000. In the same year, there were also said to be two hundred thirty households and two hundred families residing in the area.

The tribal economy relies on the tribally owned enterprises and those privately owned enterprises. However, the privately owned enterprises comprise only few of the resources. There are not as much privately owned companies. However, there are small and local operating companies. An example of this is the Paul's Grocery. The Spirit Lake Consulting Incorporated is the only privately owned enterprise in the tribal reservation that is focused on the professional and technical employment. In the year 2006, the company had more than a million dollars in the federal contacts. The Fort Totten is the reservaiton's business center and among the other facilities located on the area are the tribal college, the tribal administration and the Spirit Lake Consulting whose headquarters are all based on the Fort Totten.

Featured Tribal News

No featured news.