Seminal Supreme Court Cases
Regarding Federal Indian Law


Below are links to the text of many of the Supreme Court decisions which have shaped and influenced Indian Law. These cases are listed in chronological order. 

1800-1900 1900-1920 1920-1940 1940-1960 1960-1970 1970-1980 1980-1990 1990-2000 2000-

1800-1900

Cherokee Nation v. State of Georgia, 30 U.S. 1 (1831).

Worcester v. State of Georgia, 31 U.S. 515 (1832).

United States v. McBratney, 104 U.S. 621 (1881).

United States v. Holliday, 70 U.S. 407 (1865).

In re Kansas Indians, 72 U.S. 737 (1866).

The Cherokee Tobacco, 78 U.S. 616 (1870).

United States v. Kagama, 118 U.S. 375 (1886).

Talton v. Mayes, 163 U.S. 376 (1896).

Lucas v. United States, 163 U.S. 612 (1896).

1900-1920

Lone Wolf v. Hitchcock, 187 U.S. 553 (1903).

Winters v. United States, 207 U.S. 564 (1908).

United States v. Sandoval, 231 U.S. 28 (1913).

1920-1940

Carpenter v. Shaw, 280 U.S. 363 (1930).

United States v. Creek Nation, 295 U.S. 103 (1935).

United States v. Shoshone Tribe of Indians, 304 U.S. 111 (1938).

1940-1960

Tulee v. State of Washington, 315 U.S. 681 (1942).

Williams v. Lee, 358 U.S. 217 (1959).

1960-1970

Seymour v. Superintendent, 368 U.S. 351 (1962).

Warren Trading Post v. Tax Commission, 380 U.S. 685 (1965).

Menominee Tribe v. United States, 391 U.S. 404 (1968).

1970-1980

Mescalero Apache Tribe v. Jones, 411 U.S. 145 (1973).

Morton v. Mancari, 417 U.S. 535 (1974).

United States v. Mazurie, 419 U.S. 544 (1975).

Moe v. Salish & Kootenai Tribes, 425 U.S. 463 (1976).

Bryan v. Itasca County, 426 U.S. 373 (1976).

United States v. Antelope, 430 U.S. 641 (1977).

Puyallup Tribe v. Washington Game Department, 433 U.S. 165 (1977).

Oliphant v. Suquamish Indian Tribe, 435 U.S. 191 (1978).

United States v. Wheeler, 435 U.S. 313 (1978).

1980-1990

Washington v. Confederated Tribes, 447 U.S. 134 (1980).

White Mountain Apache Tribe v. Bracker, 448 U.S. 136 (1980).

Central Machinery Company v. Arizona Tax Commission, 448 U.S. 160 (1980).

Montana v. United States, 450 U.S. 544 (1981).

Merrion v. Jicarilla Apache Tribe, 455 U.S. 130 (1982).

Ramah Navajo School Board v. Bureau of Revenue, 458 U.S. 832 (1982).

New Mexico v. Mescalero Apache Tribe, 462 U.S. 324 (1983).

Rice v. Rehner, 463 U.S. 713 (1983).

Three Affiliated Tribes v. Wold Engineering, 467 U.S. 138 (1984).

National Farmers Union Insurance Companies v. Crow Tribe of Indians, 468 U.S. 1315 (1984).

Kerr-McGee v. Navajo Tribe, 471 U.S. 195 (1985).

Montana v. Blackfeet Tribe, 471 U.S. 759 (1985).

California v. Cabazon Band of Mission Indians, 480 U.S. 202 (1987).

Lyng v. Northwest Cemetary Protection Association, 485 U.S. 439 (1988).

Cotton Petroleum Corporation v. New Mexico, 490 U.S. 163 (1989).

Brendale v. Confederated Yakima Indian Nation, 492 U.S. 408 (1989).

1990-2000

Employment Division, Oregon Department of Natural Resources v. Smith, 494 U.S. 872 (1990).

Duro v. Reina, 495 U.S. 676 (1990).

Oklahoma Tax Commission v. Citizen Band Potawatomi Tribe, 498 U.S. 505 (1991).

Yakima v. Confederated Tribes, 502 U.S. 251 (1992).

Oklahoma Tax Commission v. Sac & Fox Nation, 508 U.S. 114 (1993).

South Dakota v. Bourland, 508 U.S. 679 (1993).

Seminole Tribe of Florida v. Florida, 517 U.S. 44 (1996).

Babbitt v. Youpee, 519 U.S. 234 (1997).

Strate v. A-1 Contractors, 520 U.S. 438 (1997).

Idaho v. Coeur d'Alene Tribe of Idaho, 521 U.S. 261 (1997).

South Dakota v. Yankton Sioux Tribe, 522 U.S. 329 (1998).

Alaska v. Native Village of Venetie, 522 U.S. 520 (1998).

Montana v. Crow Tribe of Indians, 523 U.S. 696 (1998).

Kiowa Tribe of Oklahoma v. Manufacturing Technologies, Inc., 523 U.S. 751 (1998).

Arizona Dept. of Revenue v. Blaze, 526 U.S. 32 (1999).

Minnesota v. Mille Lacs Band of Chippewa Indians, 526 U.S. 172 (1999).

El Paso Natural Gas Company v. Neztsosie, 526 U.S. 473 (1999).

Amoco Production Co. v. Southern Ute Indian Tribe, 526 U.S. 865 (1999).

2000-2009

Rice v. Cayetano, 528 U.S. 495 (2000).

Department of the Interior v. Klamath Water Users Association, No. 99-1871 (2001).