Are you interested in the Native Americans Project?

+9 votes

Members of The Native Americans Project identifiy, add, source and track WikiTree profiles of indigenous people who lived in what is currently the boundaries of the United States. (See The First Peoples Project for other areas.) 

We also seek out and track the mythological (disproven/false/fraudulent ancestry) claims about Native Americans that make their way onto WikiTree. This is an important task toward keeping our shared tree accurate and healthy. 

If you are researching Native Americans, or just interested in helping The Native Americans Project, please join us.

We are asking everyone who wants to join to share a profile you've worked on that demonstrates your understanding of basic WikiTree editing. We would really like to see basic knowledge of Native Americans profile guidelines, research and sourcing (see Project Guidelines) You must have been a member of WikiTree for at least 30 days, have made at least 100 contributions to WikiTree profiles and (if working on profiles of pre-1700 Native Americans) have successfully completed the Pre-1700 Quiz.

If you are interested, post an ANSWER below sharing your specific area of interest (a tribe/nation, era or region, for example). Please include a link to a profile you've worked on.

Thank you.

in Requests for Project Volunteers by Sarah Mason G2G6 Mach 4 (43.8k points)

Is there any Project Member willing to look at this, because it saddens me that this extremely talented lady doesn't have a profile (or, at least, I didn't find one) -- Mildred Bailey.  Her family was talented (direct copy and paste from the Wikipedia page for those who don't click links) --

She grew up on the Coeur d'Alene Reservation in Idaho, where her mother was an enrolled member. The family moved to Spokane, Washington when she was 13. Her younger brothers also became musicians, with her brother Al Rinker starting to perform as a singer with Bing Crosby in Spokane and eventually becoming famous as a member of The Rhythm Boys. Charles Rinker became a lyricist, and Miles Rinker was a clarinet and saxophone player who later became a booking agent.


I've tackled a few things where I'm not normally comfortable, but considering my only First Nations (Americas) profile thus far was Michael Wallet (Chippewa -- family line Ouellette  from Canada), who is collaterally related to my family, I most definitely do not consider myself qualified to tackle Mildred and her family.

Thanks for reading.

Melanie, I suggest you start a separate g2g thread just for this person; it's not likely to get sufficient project volunteer attention buried in a "join" thread. I almost skipped right over it except I saw your name and wondered if you were joining the NA project...

P.S. in the meantime, I'll get started...

I saw your name and wondered if you were joining the NA project...



Although I have the heart for it, I don't think I have the knowledge to make a join request - and I know I don't know enough to create profiles beyond the basics as I did for Michael.   Besides, join requests should be in answer form, not comment.  smiley

I thought posting here might get it seen more than a separate thread that might get a few looks and no responses. 

Thank you for responding - and thank you for creating her a profile. 

Thank you, Melanie and Jillaine!

I did ask a separate question : Can you help with Native American notable Mildred Bailey? — so, hopefully, there will be those who can do better than I could, who might step in to help.

11 Answers

+3 votes
ok so her is my moms tribe that is not listed on here Yurok tribe. They are in Eureka California. I would like to help with this and if you can add them to the list. let me know.

by Lacey Franks G2G Crew (890 points)
Hi Lacey,

Thank you for asking about the Yurok tribe on WikiTree. It looks like we have categories for the Yurok, specifically Big Lagoon Rancheria and Blue Lake Rancheria, but there aren't any profiles grouped in these categories yet. We do not currently have an active team page, nor do we have a free-space page with any information or resources yet at this time.

+3 votes

Dear Sarah,

How do you handle Indians who were given names by their captors? 2 examples:

1: I have a Dine friend ( Navaho ) whose ancestors were given the name "Cambridge" because the particular Army sargeant who was checking their existence off on a list  during the "long march" was named that.

2: Our family website ("Axtell Family Organization") mentions a Nez Perce ( Stephen Axtell ) who was given our name because the local county clerk didn't like his Indian name. 

A separate American Axtell lineage started in 1885 when a Nez Perce (pronounced nezz purse) Indian in northern Idaho took the name Stephen Axtell to be eligible for a grant of land. He had a son named William Whitman Axtell who married Nellie Moody in 1923. Their only child was Horace Percy Axtell (born 7 Nov 1924), named after Horace Moody, an uncle, and his father's friend, Percy, the postmaster in Stites, Idaho. Horace's Indian name is "Isluumts", after his grandfather. Horace is a great-grandfather, so the Stephen Axtell lineage has 6 generations now.

BTW, I use the term "Indian" because that is what all my Indian friends use.

by Dave Axtell G2G2 (2.2k points)

Hi Dave,

This does get a bit tricky, doesn't it? WikiTree, in general, wants us to use what the person would've used in their time and language. The Native Americans Project, specifically, wants to use the tribe's name for those born before the use of surnames. So, in both of your examples, I would strive to find and use the name the individual used for themselves, most likely using the tribe's name in the LNAB field. The other names given to them could be put in the other last names field. It may be possible more sources are found for the later name just because that was written down by clerks and such. Of course, an explanation in the biography or research notes would be appropriate, along with sources, sources, sources smiley  


In the case of Dine folks, many do not want their native names made public. They feel that is for tribal members only.
+4 votes
yes i know that i have a lot of native in my tree i do have the treety book to suport my clames
by George Rinker G2G Crew (380 points)

Hi George,

Welcome to WikiTree! If you would like to join the Native Americans Project, please review the requirements as stated above. 

"We are asking everyone who wants to join to share a profile you've worked on that demonstrates your understanding of basic WikiTree editing. We would really like to see basic knowledge of Native Americans profile guidelines, research and sourcing (see Project Guidelines) You must have been a member of WikiTree for at least 30 days, have made at least 100 contributions to WikiTree profiles and (if working on profiles of pre-1700 Native Americans) have successfully completed the Pre-1700 Quiz."

I hope to hear back from you again soon!


i con be lazey and get my masters it is not my stiley i whant the trouth but not geting my sied or nolage is to not whant the real native story
+2 votes

I would love to be a member of your the Native American project.

I have been searching for my Native American family since I was a child of 9 years old. My Grandma Zella Mae Derrickson  : Franks-1918 told me of my Cherokee ancestry. I have been in contact with the Cherokee.  However  they told me although they believe that I am Native Cherokee. It is going to be hard to find my family since they left the tribe before the Trail of Tears.
by Sheri Stigall G2G1 (1.5k points)
Hi Sheri,

Thank you for your interest in the Native Americans Project. One of our membership requirements is to put forth a profile you have worked on that shows your knowledge of basic WT editing, such as sourcing and formatting. We would also like to see the profile show some Native American research and use of reliable sources. The project's leadership team (currently myself and the project coordinators) will review the profile before awarding the badge. Do you have a profile you would like to show us?
+2 votes
I'm interested in joining the project. I'm mostly interested in researching the Matoys and Sheltons that were old settlers, and a strange Royston-Callahan relative that may have also been Cherokee.

An example profile I've made -
by J Bourne G2G Rookie (260 points)
Wonderful, thank you, J. Welcome to the project!
+2 votes
I've just discovered my Cherokee and Powhatan ancestry on my maternal side-also Penobscot on my maternal side. I haven't posted it on here because I know I have to have plenty of sources and I'm working on that now. My mission is to complete my ancestry on Ancestry and bring the names over to the Wiki platform. My direct line native is Creecy (Louisa Spencer) Powhatan, daughter of Great Chief Powhatan and Matatishe Winasuke Nonoma Powhatan, and sister of Matoaka-Rebecca Rolfe-Pocahontas Powhatan. I would love to join this and hope it isn't an issue if I take a little longer to get persons added to the tree. Can I join?
by Valora Frazier G2G3 (3.4k points)
Hi Valora,
Thank you for your interest in The Native Americans Project. To be clear, we do not base membership on the personal genealogy of the applicant, but on the applicant's ability to do good research with reliable sources. Unsourced internet trees, such as those found at Ancestry, are not considered to be reliable sources. If you want to join the project, please show us a profile that illustrates your ability to do good research with reliable sources.
Yes, I will do so. Do I just put the profile up in this forum?
yes, please :)
+2 votes
Good Afternoon fellow researchers,

Would like to help add profiles for the Round Valley Indian Tribes and Paskenta Band of Nomlaki of Northern California.

My 4th great maternal grandmother was Jane Chistower, full blooded Nomlaki, division of Wintu Penutian tribe.

Sincerely, Shirley Park
by Shirley Park G2G Rookie (260 points)
Hi Shirley,

Thank you for your interest in the Native Americans Project. Do you have a profile that shows us basic editing skills with some Native American research and sourcing?

Still building on profiles for Martha (Ayers) Britton Doan Youree and Lela (Doan) Shields Clark.  Have not added Jane Chistower yet who was Nomlaki. Have some Native American census, obituaries, etc. to add. Will let you know when have updated profiles with Native American sources.

Thank you, Sincerely,

 Shirley Park
+1 vote
As a descendant and relative I have worked for over thirty years to clear up misconceptions around, and false claims of, Native heritage and identity. I work every day in the areas of language and cultural preservation with members of my extended family, who are from a handful of Nations in the "US" and "Canada". Most of the work I've done on here has been cleaning up and sourcing profiles I come across that I already have solid sourcing for. I've been away for a bit, so it may take me a while to find any I want to use as examples. I have come back to look into some of the tangled issues around the various Powhatan, Pamunkey and related Peoples' documentation (or lack thereof), having seen what a mess these trees tend to be. Some of these people are my ancestors, so I also have a personal interest in keeping these ancestors' records accurate.
by Marie Allen G2G Rookie (240 points)
edited by Marie Allen
Hi Marie,

Thank you for your interest in accurate research and the Native Americans Project. I look forward to seeing your example profile.
+1 vote
Hi, Sarah, I don't need the project badge but I do occasionally work on Natives in the area of Maine (who were married to Acadians).  I would like to keep up on the news from the project.  Would it be possible to add me to your google group for that purpose?  I mainly have questions about names and location names.  Cindy (co-leader Acadians Project).
by Cindy Cooper G2G6 Pilot (141k points)
Hi Cindy,

Currently the google group is being used primarily to see the activity on the profiles managed by the project. Questions about names and locations will likely get more attention on g2g with the Native_Americans tag, or you can message me and I will help.


0 votes
I am already working on research on Powhatan Native Americans as there is one in my family tree; Mary Ann Baskett (Little Flower).  I have joined a group for that tribe and since most of the others are pre-1700 I should join this project also. My first effort is to verify the information on my trees I did on Ancestry so I can hopefully add those ancestors to my tree here, and then to do more learning about this tribe and also the Cherokee.  I am really new to all this so will need help for sure. Here is the profile I did for my father, which of course was easy since I personally knew all the details:  -and here we go I can't get the profile link to past here at all, He is Lamb -8666
by L Lamb G2G1 (1.6k points)
0 votes
I am part Native on my mother’s side. Mostly Metis, but I believe Ojibwe as well. I would absolutely love to learn as much as possible.
ago by Laura Gerwood G2G Crew (810 points)

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