Welcome to the Iowa Nation Archives of the State of Oklahoma!
From the term Ai'yuwe, which
is said to be derived from "marrow."
The Iowa call temselves Pahodje or "snow-covered" ("gray snow" or "dusty ones").
The Iowa were first encountered by the French in 1701 near the mouth of the Blue Earth River in Minnesota, but their range extended south as far as present-day Des Moines. They eventually left their home north of the Great Lakes with their relatives, the Winnebago Indians, but split from them and settled in what is now Illinois. Subsequent migrations took them to present Iowa and Minnesota. In 1825, they ceded all their lands Missouri lands in the U.S. and were assigned a reservation in Kansas. When land allotments were proposed in 1876, about half of the Iowa it would affect were opposed and small bands began moving to Indian Territory (settling on the Sac and Fox reservation). In 1883, they were finally assigned their own reservation in I.T. In 1890, allotments were made and the next year, surplus Iowa lands were opened to white settlement.
The Iowa tribe were known for the pipes they made from red pipestone which was quarried in Minnesota, and they excelled in dressing buffalo skins and other pelts which they traded. In 1811, they joined the Sac and Fox tribe in mining lead in what is now Iowa. They were early to begin assimilating European civilization. On their reservation in Kansas, they had comfortable homes and productive farms.
Gene Phillips -State Archivist
Linda Simpson - Archivist-Indian Nations/Indian Territory
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Last Updated: 31 Aug 2009