Federal Recognition

BIA issues final decision against Central Band of Cherokees

The Bureau of Indian Affairs has issued a final determination against federal recognition for the Central Band of Cherokee, a group in Tennessee.

The BIA said the group did not meet the seven mandatory criteria for federal recognition. In particular, its members were unable to document Indian ancestry.

"[T]he evidence shows that the group’s ancestors were consistently identified as non-Indians, primarily White settlers coming to Tennessee in the early and mid-1800s from disparate locations. At no time were they identified as Indians or living in an Indian community," the BIA said in a press release.

The group is recognized by the state of Tennessee, according to its website.

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