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  Historic Land Area

The aboriginal homeland of the Haudenosaunee within the current boundaries of New York State consist of 39,000 square miles. The Haudenosaunee territory had as its domestic boundaries the St. Lawrence River-Lake Ontario to the north, Lake Champlain-Hudson River to the east, Niagara River-Lake Erie to the west and the Susquehanna-Delaware rivers to the south.

Each Haudenosaunee nation had defined its own region as follows:

Mohawk Nation: 15,534 square miles (9,941,760 acres) from the St. Lawrence River to the Delaware River (north-south); from the West Canada-Unadilla creeks to the Hudson River (west-east).

Oneida Nation: 5,819 square miles (3,724,160 acres) from the West Canada Creek to Chittenango Creek (east to west); from the St. Lawrence River to the Susquehanna River (north-south).

Onondaga Nation: 4,173 square miles (2,670,720 acres) from the Chittenango Creek to the Montezuma wetlands (east-west); from the St. Lawrence River (Thousand Islands) to the Susquehanna River (north-south).

Cayuga Nation: 3,123 square miles (1,998,720 acres) from the Montezuma wetlands to Seneca Lake (east-west); from Lake Ontario to the Chemung River (north- south).

Seneca Nation: 10,248 square miles (6,558,720 acres) from Seneca Lake to the Niagara River (east-west); from Lake Ontario to Allegheny River (north-south).

The above does not include ancestral Haudenosaunee land within the current states of Pennsylvania and Ohio and the provinces of Quebec and Ontario.

Current Haudenosaunee territory within New York State consists of the following:

Mohawks: 14,640 acres in Franklin County (referred to as Akwesasne Mohawk Territory or the "St. Regis Indian Reservation").

Oneidas: 9,500 acres in various sections in Madison and Oneida counties.

Onondaga: 7,300 acres in Onondaga county.

Cayugas: No current land holdings although the Cayugas now reside on the Seneca territory of Cattaraugus.

Senecas: 7,317 acres at Tonawanda in Genesee-Erie counties; 17,025 at Cattaraugus in Erie County; 30,984 acres at Allegany in Cattaraugus County; 640 acres at Oil Springs in Allegany County.

Tuscaroras: 5,778 acres in Niagara County.

Land Area in Canada

The Mohawks have four land areas in the province of Quebec: Kahnawake ( on the south shore of the St. Lawrence across from Montreal; Kanehsatake (Oka), (2,500 acres) on the north shore of the Ottawa River west of Montreal; part of Akwesasne with islands and mainland southeast of the city of Cornwall (7384 acres); the St. Lucie-Doncaster hunting preserve north of Kanehsatake.

The Mohawks also have land in the province of Ontario: the Tyendinaga (Deseronto) reserve on the Bay of Quinte west of Kingston; the Watha reserve north of Toronto (15,000 acres); and the Cornwall Island district of Akwesasne (2,050 acres).

All six Haudenosaunee nations live on the Six Nations (Grand River-Oshweken) Reserve near Hamilton, Ontario.

The Oneidas have land on the Thames (Southwold) River west of London, Ontario.

Land Area in Wisconsin

The Oneidas established a community along the Green Bay in eastern Wisconsin in the 1823 having purchased 4,000,000 acres from the Menominee Nation.
While most of their lands were lost in the 19th century (in 1838 they had 65,426 acres remaining); by the 1970's they had 2,200 acres of collective lands. They are currently adding to their holdings in and around the city of Green Bay.

Land Area in Oklahoma

The Haudenosaunee arrived in Oklahoma in 1832 having been compelled to abandon its Ohio lands. The group, consisting primarily of Cayugas and Senecas but also including Mohawks, Onondagas and Oneidas, settled in northeastern Oklahoma on 10,000 acres which was reduced after the passage of the Dawes Act in 1887. Currently about 1,000 acres is held in common.

Art: © Elizabeth Quintana/Akwe:kon Press     |     Text and numbers: © Doug George-Kanentiio     |    Used with permission from Doug George-Kanentiio

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