Making their mark in American history, the Oneida Indian 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 Indian 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 Indian 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 Indian Nation reclaim this land.

Today, the Oneida Indian 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 Indian 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 Indian 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 Indian Nation

Oneidas in the U.S. Military, 19th Century

As the fledgling United States, in its infancy, continued to build the framework of its government, Oneidas remained steadfast in their support of independence and freedom. At the turn of th [...]

Oneidas in the Revolutionary War

Even before the American colonists planned to revolt against British rule, Oneidas consistently engaged with the newcomers' system of governance. Many, like Conoquhieson, one of the title na [...]

The Skenandoah Boulder Honors Instrumental Oneida Leader

By Kandice Watson, Documentarian There are many stones and boulders scattered throughout Oneida and Madison counties related to the Oneida Indian Nation, and as the People of the Standing St [...]

The Oneida Carry; an Important Link in Haudenosaunee Travels

By Kandice Watson (Wolf Clan), Documentarian The French and Indian War and The Revolutionary War were very difficult times for the Oneida Indian Nation. The Mohawk Nation suffered greatly as [...]

The Travels of the Oneida Stone

By Kandice Watson (Wolf Clan), Documentarian The Oneida Indian Nation has always been known as “The People of the Standing Stone”, “The Granite People”, among others. Of course, it is imposs [...]

Nichols Pond remains little-known site of ancient Oneida village

By Kandice Watson, Documentarian Nichols Pond, located in Fenner, NY, was the site of an Oneida village in the late 1500’s and early 1600’s. It may have been the principal Oneida village at [...]