Miami Tribe of Oklahoma
Miami Tribe of Oklahoma flag
|Regions with significant populations|
|United States (Oklahoma)|
|Christianity, traditional tribal religion|
|Related ethnic groups|
|Peoria, Kaskaskia, Piankashaw, Wea, Illinois, and other Algonquian peoples|
The tribe has partnered with Miami University of Oxford, Ohio, to create the Myaamia Center. The two organizations are working together to conduct research projects to revitalize Miami language and culture and to offer university students opportunities to visit and work with the tribe on various projects.
Government and programs
The headquarters of the Miami Tribe are Miami, Oklahoma. Of the 3,908 enrolled tribal members, only 775 of them live within the state of Oklahoma. Enrollment in the tribe is based on lineal descent, that is, they have no minimum blood quantum requirement.
Douglas Lankford is the Chief of the Miami Tribe of Oklahoma. The Miami Tribe issues its own tribal vehicle tags and operate their own housing authority.
Atotankiki Myaamiaki is the Miami Nation quarterly newspaper. The tribe is in the process of building the Myaamia Complex, for the benefit of tribal elders, to house the food program and tribal library.
In the interest of providing economic development for the community, the tribe created Miami Nation Enterprises, which oversees tribally-owned companies such as Miami Business Services, which provides personnel, information technologies, and business supplies; Miami Designs, which provides graphic art and promotional materials; Miami Cineplex, a movie theater and arcade; and ServiceWorld Computer, which provides computer networking and support, as well as video surveillance. Additionally the tribe owns one smokeshop and one casino. Their estimated annual tribal economic impact is $16,700,000.
The Miami Tribe of Oklahoma is Eastern Woodlands tribe, who traditionally spoke the Miami-Illinois language, a language of the Algonquin family, but few tribal members speak the language today. There have been recent and ongoing attempts at a revival of their 'sleeping' tongue, which is particularly well-documented in early sources (including a complete Illinois-French dictionary)  The name 'Miami' derives from the tribe's autonym (name for themselves) in their Algonquian language, Myaamia (plural Myaamiaki); it appears to have come from an older term meaning 'downstream people’. Some scholars contended the Miami called themselves the Twightwee (also spelled Twatwa), supposedly an onomatopoeic reference to their sacred bird, the Sandhill crane. However, recent studies have shown that Twightwee derives from the Delaware language exonym name for the Miamis, tuwéhtuwe, a name of unknown etymology. Some Miamis have stated that this was only a name used by other tribes for the Miamis, and not the autonym which the Miamis used for themselves. Another common term was Mihtohseeniaki, "the people." The Miami continue to employ this autonym today.
Miami society was divided into clans, led by hereditary chiefs. They settled in village of long houses. They were farmers and were known for a unique type of white corn. Traditionally, they played double ball, the moccasin game, and darts.
Like all Oklahoma tribes, the Miami endured their communal lands being broken up by the Dawes Act and their tribal government destroyed by the Curtis Act of 1898. They persevered and organized their own tribe, independent of the Peoria under the Oklahoma Indian Welfare Act, ratified their constitution on August 16, 1939.
- 2011 Oklahoma Indian Nations Pocket Pictorial Directory. Oklahoma Indian Affairs Commission. 2011: 21. Retrieved 4 Jan 2012.
- Koenig, Pamela. Miami. Oklahoma Historical Society's Encyclopedia of Oklahoma History & Culture. (retrieved 24 Feb 09)
- Statement of Purpose. The Myaamia Center at Miami University. 2013 (retrieved 23 Oct 2013)
- Atotankiki Myaamiaki: Miami Nation Newspaper. The Sovereign Miami Tribe of Oklahoma. (retrieved 24 Feb 2009)
- Special Projects. The Sovereign Miami Tribe of Oklahoma. (retrieved 24 Feb 2009)
- MNE Companies. Miami Nation Enterprises. (retrieved 24 Feb 2009)
- Anderton, Alice, PhD. Status of Indian Languages in Oklahoma. Intertribal Wordpath Society. 2009 (24 Feb 2009)
- Costa, David J. 2000. Miami-Illinois Tribe Names. In John Nichols, ed., Papers of the Thirty-first Algonquian Conference 30-53. Winnipeg: University of Manitoba.
- "Constitution of the Miami Tribe of Oklahoma." Native American Constitution and Law Digitization Project. (retrieved 1 Mar 2010)
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Miami (tribe).|
- Miami Tribe of Oklahoma, official website
- The Myaamia Center at Miami University
- Miami Nation Enterprises