Red Cliff Band of Lake Superior Chippewa

Mailing Address




Cultural History

The Red Cliff Band of Lake Superior Chippewa started as part of the Lake Superior Tribes until it was finally recognized as another band. It was in the year 1854 when the Commissioner of Indian Affairs set a treaty council who were going to be responsible of the attempt to get the Chippewa Indians to give up their titles and ownership to some of the portions of their tribal land located on the Lake Superior. There were a number of the Ojibwe Chiefs who responded to the call that they then convened in the town of La Pointe on the Madeline Island which is one of the twenty two Apostle Islands located in the Chequamegon Bay of the Northern Wisconsin. Some other chiefs from all over the Lake Superior traveled to this council. The chiefs who traveled included Chief Buffalo, one of the most loved leaders of the tribe. It can be noted that it was Chief Buffalo who was the founder of the Red Cliff Reservation. When he traveled across the island, many of his supporters traveled with him. In 1856, because of the plethora of his supporters, an executive order was created so as to establish a new reservation for those members who chose to be with him.
The Red Cliff Reservation is the current home of the tribe. It was created under a series of treaties signed between the Red Cliff Band of Lake Superior Chippewa and the United States government. The most recent of the treaties was the Treaty of 1854. The current reservation is said to be approximately one mile wide and fourteen miles long. The reservation is situated on the top of the Bayfield Peninsula, along the shores of the Lake Superior in the northern part of Wisconsin. The Red Cliff Village is the primary village of the tribe where the tribal offices and businesses are headquartered. The village is located three miles on the north of Bayfield Wisconsin which is a popular tourist spot. The land is adjacent to the Apostle Lands National Lakeshore. There are said to be a population of 924 in the reservation area who are majority Native Americans. 
Tourism is a major industry in the Red Cliff Reservation. Being adjacent to the Apostle Lands National Lakeshore, the territory of the tribe is likewise blessed with resources that tourists love to visit. The visitors are always after the unique sites and adventures. The Isle Vista Casino, the Campground and Marina, as well as hiking trails and fishing activities are some of the well loved tourist attractions in the area. The Pow Wow is another major tourist attraction because it showcases the traditional lifestyle of the ancient Red Cliff Band of Lake Superior Chippewa.

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