skip navigation


Register for Latest Research

Stay Informed
Register with NCJRS to receive NCJRS's biweekly e-newsletter JUSTINFO and additional periodic emails from NCJRS and the NCJRS federal sponsors that highlight the latest research published or sponsored by the Office of Justice Programs.

NCJRS Abstract

The document referenced below is part of the NCJRS Virtual Library collection. To conduct further searches of the collection, visit the Virtual Library. See the Obtain Documents page for direction on how to access resources online, via mail, through interlibrary loans, or in a local library.


NCJ Number: 74008 Find in a Library
Title: American Indians and the Law
Editor(s): L Rosen
Date Published: 1976
Page Count: 226
Sponsoring Agency: Transaction Publishers
Piscataway, NJ 08854
Sale Source: Transaction Publishers
Rutgers-the State University
140 West Ethel Road
Units L-M
Piscataway, NJ 08854
United States of America
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This collection of nine symposium essays explores critical areas of concern in Indian law, including exercise of jurisdiction, control of water and mineral resources, and Federal policies affecting Indian affairs.
Abstract: Following a brief summary of the unique legal problems faced by American Indian Tribes is a discussion of Federal Indian policies and the goals of the American Indian Policy Review Commission. The development of the special legal status of Indian tribes which enjoy local autonomy is attributed to the historical experiences of Indians and whites form the time of the settlers to the present. Discussions of the Indian tribal court system and the organization of the Bureau of Indian Affairs emphasize the fact that Federal policies have used tribal government to defeat tribalism. For example, costly judicial reforms mandated by the 1968 Indian Bill of Rights have tended to neutralize rather than strengthen tribal courts and police. Analysis of water rights in the Yellowstone River Basin indicates that these waters belong exclusively to Indian tribes whose rights deserve Federal protection. An examination of Navajo water rights, however, suggests that a tribe might have to bargain away resource rights for short-term benefits that could be lost through expensive and lengthy litigation over full legal rights. The 1971 Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act, the largest land and mineral compensation program undertaken by Congress, is also discussed. Legal doctrines which support tribal powers to tax non-Indians are detailed in an article which cites examples from the Navajo tribe. The final paper considers Federal funding of Indian schools and recommends more precise regulation and administration to ensure that Indians actually benefit from these programs. Footnotes accompany each article. (Author abstract modified)
Index Term(s): American Indians; Bureau of Indian Affairs; Indian justice; Reservation crimes; Reservation law enforcement; Tribal court system
To cite this abstract, use the following link:

*A link to the full-text document is provided whenever possible. For documents not available online, a link to the publisher's website is provided. Tell us how you use the NCJRS Library and Abstracts Database - send us your feedback.