Turtle Mountain Indian Agency (North Dakota)Edit This Page

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United States Gotoarrow.png American Indians Gotoarrow.png North Dakota Gotoarrow.png Indians of North Dakota Gotoarrow.png Turtle Mountain Indian Agency (North Dakota)

The Turtle Mountain Agency is a currently operating agency of the Bureau of Indian Affairs. Its supervising office is the Aberdeen Area Office.


Indian Tribes Associated With This Agency



The Turtle Mountain Agency was established in 1910 for the Turtle Mountain Chippewa of North Dakota, who had been assigned to the Fort Totten Agency. Fort Totten and Turtle Mountain Agencies were merged in 1947. The merged agency was called the Turtle Mountain Consolidated Agency. However, in 1949, they were separated and became independent agencies again.


The majority of records of individuals were those created by the agencies. Some records may be available to tribal members through the tribal headquarters.They were (and are) the local office of the Bureau of Indian Affairs, and were charged with maintaining records of the activities of those under their responsibility. Among these records are:

Some of the historical textual records of the Turtle Mountain Agency, which may include records of earlier agencies having jurisdiction over the same tribes, are now housed at the Central Plains Regional Archives of the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) in Kansas City. Among those records, of particular value for genealogical and historical research, are:

  • Census of families, 1884-1908
  • Chippewa census, 1894-1937
  • Allotment records, 1904-1914
  • Annuity payrolls, 1904-1911
  • Birth, marriage and death records, 1904-1950
  • Probate records, 1904-1917
  • Register of families, 1905
  • Township maps, 1906-1926
  • Birth certificates, 1907-1952
  • Family records cards, 1908
  • School census 1912-1926
  • Death certificates, 1916-1952
  • Indians in World War I, 1917-1926
  • Indians in World War II, 1940-1950

Some of these agency records have been microfilmed and are available at the Family History Library and through its system of family history centers (their microfilm numbers 1208531-1208540, and 1249900-1249905).

An 1881 list of Turtle Mountain half-breeds is included in the records of the Fort Peck Agency currently housed in the Rocky Mountain Regional Archives of the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) in Denver.

The 1900 federal census included population schedules for the Turtle Mountain Indian Reservation. The census includes the non-Indian employees of the Turtle Mountain Agency, as well as many pages of Indian Population Schedules for the native population of the Reservation. They are recorded as District 262, Turtle Mountain Indian Reservation, in Rolette County, North Dakota.

1900 Federal Census and index of the Turtle Mountain Indian Reservation, Rolette County, North Dakota by Mary Ann Quirring, Lily B. Zwolle. FHL book 970.1 Q48n 1900 WorldCat

Turtle Mountain Chippewa, Roulette, North Dakota 1900 Census by Gail Morin FHL book 970.3 Oj3n WorldCat

Microfilm copies of ...Narrative and Statistical Reports... for the Turtle Mountain Agency, 1910-1935, are included in National Archives Microcopy M1011, Roll 157, available in the National Archives system and in the collections of the Family History Library in Salt Lake City, beginning with their microfilm numbers 1724375. Reports for some years are missing.

Annual Indian Census Rolls were taken at this agency for 1910 thru 1939. These rolls have been microfilmed by the National Archives as part of their Microcopy Number M595, rolls 595-607. Copies of these records are also available at the National Archives, their Regional Archives, and at the Family History Library and its family history centers (their microfilm numbers 583054-583066). These census rolls are also available online at Ancestry.com's subscription web site.

Records Available through the Family History Library

Vital Records from Indian Census Rolls - above

  • Birth and Death records 1924-1932 FHL film 583063
  • Agency Records (Register of Families, Census, Birth and Death, Probate, Annuity) 1884-1952 FHL films: 1028531-1028540 and 1249900-1249905


  • American Indians: A Select Catalog of National Archives Microfilm Publications. Washington DC: National Archives Trust Fund Board, National Archives and Records Administration, 1998.
  • Hill, Edward E. (comp.). Guide to Records in the National Archives of the United States Relating to American Indians. Washington DC: National Archives and Records Service, General Services Administration, 1981.
  • Hill, Edward E. The Office of Indian Affairs, 1824-1880: Historical Sketches. New York, New York: Clearwater Publishing Company, Inc., 1974.
  • Historical Sketches for Jurisdictional and Subject Headings Used for the Letters Received by the Office of Indian Affairs, 1824-1880. National Archives Microcopy T1105.
  • Marquette University. Guide to Catholic-Related Records in the Midwest about Native Americans.
  • Preliminary Inventory No. 163: Records of the Bureau of Indian Affairs. Washington DC: National Archives and Records Services. Available online
  • "Accompanying Pamphlet for Microcopy 1011", National Archives Microfilm Publications, Appendix.


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  • This page was last modified on 4 June 2015, at 19:19.
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