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Indian & Tribal Law

Resources for researching federal Indian law and Native American tribal law.

Department of the Interior

Bureau of Indian Affairs


Solicitor General Opinions

Opinions of the Solicitor of the Department of the Interior Relating to Indian Affairs, 1917-1974, KF8204 1979 at Reference Area.

Opinions from 1993 to date are on the Department of Interior's website.

Interior Board of Indian Appeals

Decisions of the United States Department of the Interior. KF5603.3.A2 at Reference Area

  • This set prints decisions from the Interior Board of Land Appeals, Interior Board of Indian Appeals, and Interior Board of Contract Appeals.
  • It also includes selected Solicitor General opinions, some of which concern Indians, e.g., "The Scope of Indian preference Under the Indian Reorganization Act, 6/10/88, 96 I.D. 1.
  • With variations in the title, covers 1909-94 (publication ceased in 1994)..
  • Note that there are separate tables for Decisions and Opinions.
  • Available on HeinOnline (UW Restricted).
  • Available on LLMC Digital Retrieve by citation.
  • Available on LexisNexis: Area of Law By Topic > Native American Law > Cases and Court Rules > Department of Interior Board of Indian Appeals Decisions.
  • Available on Westlaw: FNAM-IBIA, from 1970.

Sarch the LLMC Digital collection of executive department materials, including Interior decisions.


Congressional committee websites can be useful both for pending legislation and for materials relating to their oversight of government operations.

U.S. Indian Claims Commission & Other Indian Claims

Map of Olympia National Forest

Map of Olympic National Forest showing area ceded by Treaty of July 1, 1855, available in Indian Claims Insight.. The map was an exhibit in Indian Claims Commission dockets 155 and 242, claims brought by Quileute Tribe of Indians, Hoh Tribe or Band of Indians, Quinaielt Tribe of Indians, and Queets Band or Tribe. The database includes pleadings, exhibits, and decisions.


Other sources

The University Libraries subscribed to Indian Claims Insight (above) in May 2019. Before then, the following were the only sources for Indian claims. We're leaving them in the guide for users outside the UW who might have access to the print sources or HeinOnline but not Indian Claims Insight.

Decisions (1948-78)

Indexes to Decisions

  • United States Indian Claims Commission Final Report (1979) includes an index to all of the decisions through the Commission's close in 1978. KF8208.A56 1979 at Reference Area
  • Native American Rights Fund, Index to Indian Claims Commission Decisions (covers to 1976). KF8208.A55U52 at Reference Area
  • Norman A. Ross, ed., Index to the Decisions of the Indian Claims Commission (covers to 1973). KF8208.A55U525 at Reference Area

Expert Testimony

  • Norman A. Ross, ed., Index to Expert Testimony Before the Indian Claims Commission: The Written Reports. KF8208.A58R67 1973 at Reference Area. Available as an ebook.
  • Expert Testimony Before the Indian Claims Commission, microfiche set available at Suzzallo Library (Microforms Newspapers, Microfiche M-436).

Legislative History

Robert W. Barker & Alice Ehrenfeld, comps., Legislative History of the Indian Claims Commission Act of 1946. KF8208.A31A162 at Reference Area Microfiche


The Indian Claims Commission's original records are held by the National Archives and Records Administration.

National Indian Gaming Commission