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Lummi Nation

The Point Elliott Treaty established the Lummi Reservation. The reservation was originally 12,562.94 acres and was enlarged by executive order on Nov. 22, 1873 to 13,600 acres. The reservation was also meant for Nooksacks, Samishes and other local Indians but was primarily populated by Lummis. On the reservation a Roman Catholic mission was established which influenced the people there. There were many controversies with the white and the Lummi asked government to send out agent to stop the whites from harming them. Many of the people went out to work for white people like the Bellingham Bay coal mines making $700 a month. In 1974 Lummi fishing rights were restored by decision of a federal judge, provided legal protections to them in their fishing.

A new constitution was adopted in 1970 which gave broader power to the tribal business council. The council was made up of 11 persons for a term of three years. They filed a claim for additional money from the United States saying the amount given to them was too low. The commission figured $52,067 was a fair market value in 1859 and the tribe received $33,634.13. The amount valued of the land and the amount given to tribe was not considered unconscionable. The commission would not pay an additional amount and the tribe appealed. In 1972 the Court of Claims ruled that the commission had placed the bare minimum fair market value on the land in 1859 and they reversed the decision and set a fair value of $90,634.13. On Oct. 22, 1970 the tribe was awarded the rest of the money $57,000.