Important Dates Relating to Oneida Tribal Land and Sovereignty in Wisconsin

Dates prior to 1917

           See Cultural Heritage's link at: https://oneida-nsn.gov/Department/Culture/Timeline.aspx?id=10016   

1917   Trust Period Ends 

  • Conclusion of the 25 year trust period for the allotments. 
  • By this time the vast majority of the allotments had passed out of the Oneida Indians hands to the non-Indians.


1934   Indian Reorganization Act (IRA) 

  • United States passed the IRA in an attempt to secure new rights for Native Americans on reservations.
  • It allowed the Oneida people to reform its government under IRA Constitution; this is still the present form of government.
  • Oneida Executive Committee (later changed to the current Business Committee) was established as the legislative body of the Oneida Tribe.
  • One incentive for being recognized as an I.R.A. Tribe was that the United States promised to purchase lost land back for the Tribal Government.
  • United States purchased approximately 1,900 acres of land for the Oneidas within the Reservation.

1941   Oneida Land Committee

  • Executive Committee approved to form the Oneida Land Committee.
  • Oneida Land Committee currently is known as the Oneida Land Commission.
  • The Commission is responsible for making policies for Division of Land Management.
  • They oversee Land Acquisition, Leasing, Loan approval, probates and other issues relating to Tribal Lands.

1977   GTC approved to establish a Tribal Land Office

  • Resolution was passed to establish the Oneida Tribal Land Office and hire adequate staff to maintain all land records for the Tribe.
  • New Land Office was opened April 16, 1977.
  • One employee was hired to maintain all tribal land records and to reacquire the Oneida Reservation lands.
  • This office is currently known as The Division of Land Management, with 26 full-time employees.

1980  Land Commission expansion

  • Commission went from three (3) members to seven (7).
  • Land Commission is an elected body.

1981   Delegation

  • Oneida Land Committee and Land Office were delegated the responsibility to administer Tribal Lands including residential, agriculture and commercial leases and assignments.

1982   Land Acquisition Program

  • GTC approved a self-funded program, allocating 30 cents from every carton of cigarettes sold be applied to land acquisition.

Tribal Land

  • By the end of 1982 the tribe owned 2,382.35 acres of land.

1982   Direct Real Estate and Mortgage Program (DREAM) 

  • DREAM program was originally developed, when the Oneida tribe purchased a large parcel of land with a house.
  • This house was offered for rent with an Option to purchase agreement between the occupant and the Land Office.

1986   Tribal Loan Credit Program (TLC)

  • TLC program provided Tribal Members with a 20% down- payment, low interest loan.

Tribal Land

  • By the end of 1987 the Tribe owned 3,412.125 acres of land.

1987   Land Acquisition Plan

  • The first Land Acquisition Plan was approved and contributed a higher allocation to the land acquisition fund and accelerated purchases.
  • Plan provided a rational method and steps of implementation for land acquisition.
  • Plan also included recommendations for adoption of future strategies that will contribute to the successful growth and diversification of tribal resources.

1988   Indian Gaming Regulatory Act was passed

  • Era of tremendous growth in revenues and personnel.
  • Land Management’s incentive to begin purchasing commercial buildings.
  • Land Management moved to the current location on Airport Road.
  • Land Management staff was approximately 20 employees when they moved.

1989   Commercial Lease to Non-Oneida Business

  • The first commercial lease to a non-Oneida business was made to Oak Ridge Plaza, Inc.
  • The company developed the shopping centers Festival Foods, Wal-Mart and Sam’s Club.

1992   Tribal Home Repair – Improvement Loan Program (THRIL)

  • The THRIL program was started and targeted those who owned homes that were in need of renovation and repair.
  • Provided a home improvement loan with minimal qualifications and a very low interest rate.

1993   Direct Real Estate and Mortgage Program (DREAM)  

  • DREAM program was enhanced.
  • Residential homes were purchased by the Oneida Tribe and sold to Tribal Members on an “as is” basis after deduction of the land value. 
  • The Oneida Tribe retains ownership of the land. 
  • Program decreases the purchase price and makes the mortgage more affordable for homeowners. 

1995   Oneida Veterans Loan Program

  • Veterans loans established, it provide the opportunity for the Veteran’s to receive 100% assistance.
  • This program assisted Oneida Veterans with purchasing an existing home, to build, to repair and to maintain the property they own.
  • Guidelines for the veterans loans are slightly different then the regular TLC & TRIL programs.

1996   Self Governance

  • Oneida Tribe exercises its right to become self-governance.
  • Oneida Tribe signs a self- governance compact with the Bureau of Indian Affairs, which delegates all Realty Services to the Oneida Tribe’s Land Office currently known as Division of Land Management.
  • Business Committee passed Real Property Law; an Ordinance that provides regulations & procedures for the transfer, control & management of the territory within the exterior boundaries of the Oneida Reservation. 

Tribal Land

  • By the end of 1996 the Tribe owned 9,932.146 acres of land.

1997   Oneida Nation Register of Deeds

  • Became operational with the first recording. Register of Deeds provides a land database system to records land transactions in support of the Oneida Real Property Law and the Oneida Self-governance compact.
  • Addition was added to Division of Land Management including a conference room and a fire proof file room.

            Condominium Ordinance

  • Oneida Business Committee adopted the Condominium Ordinance.
  • Creating a form of ownership of property and housing that did not exist within the Oneida Tribe, which allows greater access to affordable housing and home ownership.

1998   GTC approved the 2020 Vision Acquisition Plan

  • Long Range Plan in acquisition to enable the Oneida Land Commission to acquire all lands within the original 1838 Oneida Indian Reservation Boundaries of Wisconsin.
  • Greater ownership of land within the reservations allows the Oneida Tribe opportunities for greater influence in land use and development within the Reservation.
  • Division of Land Management goal is to minimally buy back 51% of the reservation within a period of time.


Tribal Land

  • At the end of 1998 the tribe owns 10,038 acres of land or 15% of the reservation.

1999   2020 Plan Implemented

  • Purchase 1000 acres per year to meet the goal of Tribe ownership of 51% of the reservation by the year 2020.

2000   Electronic Mortgage Accounts

  • Financial Accounting System (FAS) software was purchased.
  • Loan information was entered into the system.
  • System has made loan information tracking and retrieval quick and easy.

Equity Loans

  • Equity Loans became available.
  • Division of Land Management’s website went live.

Tribal Land

  • By the end of 2000 the Oneida Tribe now owns 11,000 acres of land or 17% of the reservation. Oneida Tribal members own approximately 730 acres of trust land and about 1000 acres in fee land within the reservation.

2001   Tribal Land

  • By the end of 2001 the tribe owns approximately 13,962 acres within the reservation.

2002   Balance Acquisition to Benefit Everyone (BABE) Pilot Project

  • BABE project was implemented.
  • Land Acquisition funds set aside to acquire home and/or land of tribal individual who own fee/trust or undivided interest in land.   In turn alleviate the home owner of property taxes and secure additional land base for the Oneida Tribe.

2003   Rail Road

  • Oneida Tribe and Fox Valley & Western Ltd signed an Agreement and Mutual Release for most of the Rail Road lands that are located within the Oneida Reservation.

2004   New addition to DOLM

  • Addition provided a second fire-proof file room, ten new offices and six cubical work stations.

2004   Midwest Fee to Trust Consortium

  • Oneida Tribe entered into a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Bureau of Indian Affairs establishing the Midwest Region Division for the Tribes Fee to Trust Transactions.
  • Oneida Tribe, Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community originated the Midwest Region Division of Fee to Trust and planned to provide funding to the Midwest Regional Office.
  • With this proposal they could hire extra staff to exclusively process the fee to trust applications.

2005   Midwest Fee to Trust Consortium

  • First 25 Fee to Trust Application were submitted to the Bureau of Indian Affairs consisting of approximately 540.16 acres.

2006   Midwest Fee to Trust Consortium

  • Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwa of Minnesota joined the Consortium.


2007   OnBase Management System

  • The first files were scanned into the new database enabling the employees to view the files from their desk.
  • OnBase maintains a high level of security by creating a custom set of rights and privileges for each of the users.


Probate Hearings

  • Land Commission held its first Probate Hearing.


Fee to Trust Consortium Update

  • By April 2007 the Oneida Tribe had submitted approximately 229 Fee to Trust Applications consisting of almost 7745 acres to the Bureau of Indian Affairs as part of the Consortium.
  • Ho-Chunk of Wisconsin joined the Consortium.

2008   Midwest Fee to Trust Consortium Agreement

  • Oneida Tribe entered into a New Memorandum of Understanding with the BIA for the processing of the Tribal fee to trust packages.

2009   Acquired acres

  • Acquired the former Catlin property with acquisition funds and NRDA grant monies.
  • Acquired 1607 acres which included the Golf Course and the Skenandoah complex.


2010   Land Acquisition Plan 2033

  • GTC enacted resolution to provide a stable and adequate budget for the Land Commission and Division of Land Management to meet the goal of re-acquiring 75% of the Oneida Reservation within a 23 year period.
  • Sept, 2010 DOLM employees were selected for the Bureau of Indian Affairs Trust Asset Accounting Management System (TAAMS). Which is new program being used by the Bureau of Indian Affairs to manage all of the Trust Assets for various tribes in the US.

2011   Bought 501 Packerland

  • The new Oneida One Stop & Market is located here.

2012   Anniversary

  • Land Management will be celebrating its 35th Anniversary celebrated at the Annual Open House.
  • OnBase files are 100% scanned in as of April 2, 2012
  • November 14, 2012 Residential Leasing Specialist made history by encoding the first residential lease into the Bureau of Indian Affairs Trust Asset Accounting Management System (TAAMS). 

2013 Tribal Land

  • 1ST Virtual Open House posted on the Website
  • Employee, Eleanora Smith hit 30 Years of service with DOLM
  • By June 2013 the tribe owns approximately 25,042 acres or 39% of the reservation. (25,042 divided by 65,400)


  • Move in Ready Process approved and in action
  • GTC approved the Land Use Plan presented on September 12, 2015 (HBO Process)


Posted 101013 LAE