Ho-Chunk Nation of Wisconsin

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Ho-Chunk Nation of Wisconsin
Total population
6,563 (2010)
Regions with significant populations
 United States( Wisconsin)
English, Ho-Chunk[1]
traditional tribal religion, Native American Church[2]
Related ethnic groups
other Ho-Chunk people, Otoe, Iowa, and Missouria people[2]

The Ho-Chunk Nation of Wisconsin, formerly known as the Wisconsin Winnebago Tribe, is one of two federally recognized tribe of that were once a single tribe formerly known as Winnebago. The other federally recognized tribe is the Winnebago Tribe of Nebraska. The tribe separated when its members were forcibly relocated to first a reservation in Minnesota, and later the current reservation in Nebraska. The name Ho-Chunk comes from the word Hochungra, meaning "People of the Big Voice" or "People of the Sacred Language."[2]


The Ho-Chunk Nation of Wisconsin, while having no official reservation has parcels of land placed in Trust as Indian Trust Land as designated by the federal government, Secretary of the Interior and Bureau of Indian Affairs(BIA) spread over Dane, Jackson, Juneau, Monroe, Sauk, Shawano, and Wood Counties, Wisconsin. In 1990, the land designated as trust land was 4,200-acres in size.[3]


The Ho-Chunk Nation of Wisconsin is headquartered in Black River Falls, Wisconsin.[4] The tribe is governed by a democratically-elected general council. The current administration is as follows.

  • President: Jon Greendeer[4]
  • Ho-Chunk Nation Flag:


The Ho-Chunk Nation speak English and the Ho-Chunk language, which is a Chiwere-Winnebago language, part of the Siouan-Catawban language family.[1]

Economic development[edit]

Mitchell Red Cloud Jr., tribal member and decorated Marine who was killed in combat in Korea

The Ho-Chunk Nation owns and operates several casinos, Ho-Chunk Gaming, in Black River Falls, Baraboo, Madison, Nekoosa, Tomah, and Wittenberg, Wisconsin.[5] The tribe also owns numerous restaurants and hotels connected to the casinos.


The Ho-Chunk people were forcibly relocated several times by the US federal government in the 19th century. In the 1870s, a majority of the tribe returned to their homelands in Wisconsin. Under the Homestead Act, some tribal members gained title to 40-acre parcels of land.[2]

Notable tribal members[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Ho-Chunk." Ethnologue. Retrieved 5 Sept 2013.
  2. ^ a b c d Priztker 475
  3. ^ Pritker 477
  4. ^ a b "Tribal Directory." National Congress of American Indians. Retrieved 5 Sept 2013.
  5. ^ "Wisconsin Indian Casinos by Tribe." 500 Nations. Retrieved 5 Sept 2013.


  • Pritzker, Barry M. A Native American Encyclopedia: History, Culture, and Peoples. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2000. ISBN 978-0-19-513877-1

External links[edit]

Further reading[edit]

  • Jones, Tom, et al. People of the Big Voice: Photographs of Ho-Chunk Families by Charles Van Schaick, 1879-1942. Madison: Wisconsin Historical Society Press, 2011. ISBN 978-0870204760.