Act - An act passed by Congress in 1934 authorizing Indian tribes
to establish and conduct their own governments and form business corporations.
The I. R. A. abolished the old Allotment Act, authorized the Secretary
of the Interior to return to the tribes all "surplus lands," and prohibited
the sale of indian lands to non Indians. More lands were to be purchased
for Indian tribes.
The I. R. A. restored to the Indian the
right to practice his own religion and tribal ceremonies. All restrictions
on the use of his language were abolished. An Arts and Crafts Board
was established to encourage the production of indian art and handicraft
and to promote the sale of such work. Indian teachers speaking native
languages were employed in grade schools. A scholarship fund was
established from which Indians could borrow for college or special training,
and a revolving loan fund was set up for the incorporated tribal enterprises.
After passage of the act, tribes were given
two years to decide whether to go on as they had before, or to accept the
conditions of the I. R. A. In 1936, 195 out of the 258 eligible "tribes"
accepted. Others who felt that their reservations and treaty rights
might be affected, did not accept the act in full, but many have taken
advantage of certain provisions of the act, such as the revolving loan
within this Site
Act ][ Association
of American Indian Affairs ]
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