In 1914, Red Fox James from the Blackfeet tribe rode horseback from state to state promoting a day that honors American Indians. On December 14, 1915, he presented the endorsements of 24 state governments to the White House. There is no record, however, of such a national day being proclaimed.

In May, 1916, New York State celebrated the first American Indian Day.

In 1990, President George H.W. Bush signed a joint congressional resolution designating November 1990 as “National American Indian Heritage Month.” Similar proclamations have been issued every year since 1994.

Recent Statistics
American Indians (AI) Alaska Natives (AN)

5,l00,000
The nation’s population of AI/AN, including those of more than one race.

They made up
1.6% of the U.S. population. About half were AI/AN only, and about half were AI/AN and one or more other races.

8,600,000.
The projected population of AI/AN, including those of more than one race, on July 1, 2050.

They will comprise
2% of the total population.

1,000,000
Increase in the AI/AN population between the 2000 Census and 2010 Census.

The population increased by
26.7%.
The U.S. population growth was
9.7%.

31.3
Median age for those who are AI/AN, and no other race.

The national median age was 37.3.

324
Federally recognized American Indian reservations in 2010.

Excluding Hawaiian Home Lands, there are 617 AI/AN legal and statistical areas.

22%
AI/AN, alone or in combination, who lived in American Indian or Alaska Native Village  Areas in 2010.

100,000+
Tribal groupings with 100,000 or more population.

 Cherokee
(819,105), Navajo (332,129), Choctaw (195,764), Mexican American Indian (175,494), Chippewa (170,742), Sioux (170,110), Apache (111,810) and Blackfeet (105,304)

54%
AI/AN alone householders who owned their own home in 2011.

The national average was 65%.

27%
AI/AN alone 5 and older who spoke a language other than English at home

The national average was 20.8%

68%
Residents of the Navajo Nation Reservation and Trust Lands, age 5 and older, who spoke a language other than English at home.

$34,400,000,000
Receipts for American Indian and Alaska Native-owned businesses in 2007

 This was a
28.0% increase from 2002.
These businesses numbered
236,967, up 17.7% from 2002.

23,704
AI/AN alone-owned firms that had paid employees in 2007.

These businesses employed
184,416 people.

$35,192
The median income of AI/AN alone households in 2011.

The national average was $50,502.

27.6%
AI/AN alone who lacked health insurance coverage in 2011.

The national average was
15.1%.

153,223
AI/AN alone veterans of the U.S. armed forces in 2010.