Allotment Period

Alice Fletcher, a Harvard University anthropologist, began allotting Nez Perce Reservation lands in 1889. She completed her task in 1893. To convince reluctant Nimiipuu to sign allotment papers, Fletcher recruited a committee of Nimiipuu headed by the Reverend Archie Lawyer. This committee encouraged the Tribe to govern their own internal affairs.

Allotments caused untold hardships. But the Nimiipuu survived and preserved their identity as a people and a culture. The allotment process was stopped in 1934, with the Indian Reorganization Act. This act asserted the importance of Native American cultural institutions and returned some land to tribal ownership.