Language: Winnebago Hochunk
Family Central Mississippi Valley Siouan
Stock: Siouan Proper
Phylum: Siouan
Macro-Culture: Great Plains
Speakers 250 speakers  1995 V. Zeps
      The Winnebago were a sedentary hunter/farmer nation.  Aboriginally, they were located on the south side of Green Bay and inland to Lake Winnebago.  Tradition states that the Iowa, Otoe, and Missouria tribes separated late from the Winnebago in the region of Green Bay.  There is further evidence that, prehistorically, they live at what is now know as the Aztlan Mound in Wisconsin.
      The Winnebago suffered greatly during the time of the Beaver Wars in conflicts not only with the Iroquois, but the Illinois, Fox and others.  They allied with the French against the British and with the British against the Americans until well after the Revolutionary War.
      They were forced to move on numerous occasions, finally settling in reservations in Nebraska and Wisconsin.
Aboriginal Locations (Subdivisions)
WI  About Green Bay
Present Locations
NE   Winnebago Reservation, Winnebago
WI   Winnebago Reservation, Wisconsin Dells
Year History
1634 Battle with Illinois, met by Nicolet while at Green Bay, traded
1642 Attacked Potawatomi refugees from Beaver Wars, lost 500 warriors to storm when attacking Fox tribe, more losses to epidemic .. smallpox[?], soon killed 500 Illinois bringing aid to desperate Winnebago
1643 Devastated in revenge rail by Illinois
1660 Force inland by Iroquois attacks
1667 Devastate Winnebago accepted Algonquian refugees replenishing population
1701 Gained territory after defeat of Iroquois by French and Great Lakes tribes
1724 Joined Dakota and Fox in alliance against French and Illinois
1737 Established friendly relations with Sauk and Fox
1741 Many Winnebago moved inland from Green Bay due to decrease game animal populations
1755 Sided with the French in the French and Indian War
1775 Fought on side of British in Revolutionary War 
1763 Remained neutral in Pontiac Uprising
1809 Militant allies of Tecumseh against Americans
1812 Fought on the side of the British
1816 Made peace with the Americans
1825 Ceded land for Iowa reservation, many remained in Wisconsin
1827 Winnebago War, Chief Red Bird died in prison
1828 Treaty, ceded lands
1832 Refused to participate in Blackhawk War, treaty with US
1836  Smallpox epidemic, 25% deaths
1837 Relinquished Wisconsin lands
1839 Sauk and Fox killed 40 members of a Winnebago hunting party, later attacked Winnebago village but drive back by winter weather
1846 Moved to Minnesota reservation north of Minnesota River
1848 Moved to Long Prairie reservation in Minnesota
1853 Moved to Crow River in Minnesota
1856 Moved to Blue Earth in Minnesota
1863 Whites demanded their removal to Crow Creek Reservation after Sioux outbreak which killed 400 Whites, soon escaped to Omaha tribe, eventually given reservation in Nebraska, some remained in Minnesota
1887 Lost one third of Nebraska land to Whites
Year Total Population NE WI Source
Arrival 3,800 3,800
1650 3,800 Mooney estimate
1700 2,800 2,800 NAHDB calculation
1800 1,800 1,800 NAHDB calculation
1806 1,750 Swanton
1867 2,450 Swanton
1876 2,543 Swanton
1886 2,152 Swanton
1900 2,200 1,000 1,200 NAHDB calculation 
1910 2,333 Census
1937 2,688 US Indian Office
1973 2,334 BIA
1981 2,861 BIA
1989 2,952 BIA estimate
2000 3,600 1,100 2,500 NAHDB calculation
2004 3,736 1,204 IHS
Other speakers of the same language:
Winnebago Sites:
Appleton History
Below Aztlan
Better Life for Winnebagoes
Blackhawk of the Sauk Nation
Blackhawk War
Fort Atkinson Military Post
Ho-Chunks Under a Different Name
Hochunk Vocabulary
Hochunk Winnebago Language
New Tribal Village Rises ...
Treaty with the Winnebago - 1828
Winnebago Authors
Winnebago Casinos
Winnebago History
Winnebago History
Winnebago History
Winnebago Hoca'k
Winnebago Hoca'k Linguistic Lineage
Winnebago Indian Reservation - 1913
Winnebago Indian Road:  To the Land of the Dead
Winnebago Indian School
Winnebago Language
Winnebago Paintings
Winnebago Tribal Executive Profiled in People Magazine
Winnebago Tribe
Winnebago Tribe Creating Village for Members
Winnebago Tribe of Nebraska
Winnebago Tribe of Nebraska Community Profile
Winnebago Tribe of Nebraska:  Ferry Boat Project
Winnebago Tribe of Nebraska:  Tribal Leadership
Winnebago War

Last updated 04/04/05  Copyright 2005 by Four Directions Press