As part of the Indian termination policy that was followed by the US government from the 1940s to the 1960s, four Native American Groups in Minnesota were targeted. A memo dated 19 January 1955 for the BIA issued from the Department of the Interior indicates additional terminations were being reviewed in proposed legislation for four Indian communities of southern Minnesota including the Lower Sioux Community in Redwood and Scott counties, the New Upper Sioux Community in Yellow Medicine County, the Prairie Island Community in Goodhue County and about 15 individuals living on restricted tracts in Yellow Medicine County.
Discussions between the BIA and the Indians from the targeted area began in 1953 and continued throughout 1954. Though the Prairie Island and Lower Sioux communities drafted agreements with individual land ownership, the Upper Sioux strongly opposed fee simple title to tribal lands. On 26 January 1955 Senator Edward Thye introduced into Congress a bill (S704) to provide for termination of the tribes. Opposition, not only of the Indians, but of other citizens who realized their state expenditures might increase, were made to the committee reviewing the bill. The Governor's Commission on Human Rights also opposed the legislation, indicating that it would "not adequately protect the interests of the Indians..." The bill died in committee, never reaching the Senate floor.