Making their mark in American history, the Oneida Nation became the first ally to America when they joined the colonists in their fight for independence during the American Revolutionary War. In 1794, after the victory over the British and many hardships for the Oneidas, George Washington signed the Treaty of Canandaigua recognizing the Oneida Nation as a sovereign entity. The agreement granted federal protection of 300,000 acres.

Oneida Nation homelands originally consisted of more than six million acres stretching from the St. Lawrence River to the Susquehanna River. Oneida villages thrived in and around the present-day communities of Stockbridge, Oneida Castle, Canastota, Oriskany, the city of Oneida and elsewhere in what are now Oneida and Madison counties.

By the early 1900s, illegal state treaties nearly depleted the Oneida Nation of its homeland. The Oneidas did what they had to do to survive. Some moved, some sold their land. The Oneidas had to fight to recover the last 32 acres granted to them. The federal government filed suit in U.S. District Court in 1919 to help the Oneida Nation reclaim this land.

Today, the Oneida Nation has regained more than 18,000 acres of their original homelands – the most they have had recognized sovereignty over since 1824. A slow steady climb and dedicated perseverance has led to a resurgence for the Oneida Nation that today prospers through their many diverse enterprises, including Turning Stone Resort Casino and a chain of SavOn Convenience stores.

This economic upturn has allowed the Oneida Nation to provide many
programs and services to its Members as well as reinvest in their enterprises and community to become an economic engine in the Central New York region,
as one of the largest employers in the state.

Historical Timeline of the Oneida Nation

Observations on 19th Century Oneidas From the Pen of a Fenimore Cooper

The concept of becoming lost while reading is more fact than fiction. Reading can transport you to any place and any time; albeit, it is incumbent upon the reader to judge the words on the p [...]

Oneida’s Voice Lives Through Edison Recording

How did it transpire that an Oneida woman, living on a farm in Manlius, who sang an Oneida dirge for a deceased anthropologist in Rochester, ended up recording said lament in New Jersey for [...]

The Oriskany Battle of Oneida Hanyery and Mohawk Joseph Brant

During the Revolutionary War, Oneidas bound themselves "to hold the Covenant Chain with the United States, and with them to be buried in the same, or to enjoy the fruits of victory and peace [...]

Oneidas Played Vital Role in The Battle of Oriskany

When most Americans are asked to recount a name synonymous with the Battle of Oriskany, the answer that comes most easily is that of Gen. Nicholas Herkimer. But there are other heroes in tha [...]

Dr. Erl Bates Keystone to Haudenosaunee, Cornell Connection

Dr. Erl Bates began visiting Haudenosaunee farmers in the early 1900s. He brought Cornell University-developed poultry, piglets and seeds, plus established a revolving loan fund to ensure th [...]

Oneida Sets Standards for Forestry

During the Great Depression, Franklin D. Roosevelt’s “New Deal” created the Indian Emergency Conservation Work (IECW) program, which later morphed into the Civilian Conservation Corps–Indian [...]