Today there are more than 500 Indian tribes in the United States. Their histories are complex. The following represents a number of resources available:
The United States and the Cherokees signed treaties in 1785, 1835 and 1866 which, among other things, contained a clause in which the Cherokee could appoint a member to be a delegate in the United States Congress. Recently, Kim Teehee, the Cherokee Nation's Vice President of Government Relations, was nominated to be this delegate. She is the first such nominee. Cherokee Nation Principal Chief Chuck Hoskin, Jr. has said that the nation will uphold its treaty obligations and hopes the United States will too. The nomination of a delegate is aimed at strengthening the tribe's sovereignity.