National American Indian Heritage Month

November is National American Indian Heritage Month, a time to recognize the enormous contributions of America's first peoples. For a brief History of National American Indian Heritage Month, click here.

As early as 1916, efforts began to honor Native Americans when the Governor of New York declared "American Indian Day." Many state and local jurisdictions followed suit over the years. It reached the national level in 1979, when Congress passed a joint resolution calling for a "Native American Awareness Week." Throughout his time in office, President Reagan designated several days and weeks as time to celebrate "National American Indian Heritage." Since that time, each President has issued proclamations declaring November as " National American Indian Heritage Month."

Federal, State, Tribal and local governmental representatives are urged to observe the month of November with appropriate programs, ceremonies and activities.

There are many great opportunities to celebrate the rich culture of Native America, including attending Powwows, festivals, art shows, pot lucks and gatherings; visiting tribal reservations; listening to storytellers; attending presentations given by tribal elders and leaders, and reading about American Indian tribes and culture.