American Indian Responses to
Environmental Challenges

Leech Lake Ojibwe
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Meet the People

The Leech Lake Band of the Ojibwe is one of many Ojibwe bands in the U.S. and Canada. Ojibwe people are also called Chippewa, or Anishinaabe.

Key Terms

  • Anishinaabe

    The name Ojibwe people use when talking about themselves. Literal translation is “original people.”

  • Ojibwe

    A name originally used by other American Indians for the Anishinaabe. It may come from the Ojibwe word for “puckered,” used to describe traditional moccasins worn by the Ojibwe.

  • Chippewa

    The name for the Ojibwe people used in official agreements with the United States. Believed to come from a mispronunciation of the word Ojibwe.

  • Manoomin

    Ojibwe word for wild rice. Manoomin is not technically a rice, but a grass that grows only in water.

  • Band

    A small group within a tribe or Native nation. Not all tribes or nations have bands.

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Explore: Territory Maps

Map of North America Great Lakes region Minnesota Chippewa tribe Leech Lake Reservation

Where the Leech Lake Ojibwe are located.

Historical Ojibwe Territory: The Ojibwe people once lived, hunted, and fished throughout a huge territory in the Great Lakes region.

Minnesota Chippewa Tribe: Today, many self-governing Ojibwe bands (19 in the US) are spread out across five U.S. states and three Canadian provinces. Six bands make up the Minnesota Chippewa Tribe.

Leech Lake Reservation: The Leech Lake Reservation was established in 1855 by treaty with the United States. It has about 865,000 acres, one-third of which acreage is in wetlands, lakes, and rivers.

North America
Historic Ojibwe
Chippewa Tribe
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Try These Questions

Read the key term definitions above. Which name is used in treaties with the U.S. government?
A) Ojibwe
B) Anishinaabe
C) Chippewa
D) None of the above
Why is wild rice, or manoomin, important to the Ojibwe?
Rice stalk
A) It is an important source of nutrition.
B) It is believed to be a gift to the Ojibwe from the Creator.
C) It plays an important role in Ojibwe teachings.
D) All of the above
True or false? The number of wild rice beds harvested by the Ojibwe people today has increased since the time of their ancestors.
Rice stalk
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