Land Acknowledgement

University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee Version:
We acknowledge in Milwaukee that we are on traditional Potawatomi, Ho-Chunk and Menominee homeland along the southwest shores of Michigami, North America’s largest system of freshwater lakes, where the Milwaukee, Menominee and Kinnickinnic rivers meet and the people of Wisconsin’s sovereign Anishinaabe, Ho-Chunk, Menominee, Oneida and Mohican nations remain present.

Unsure how to say some of the words? Click here to listen, then you too can share this acknowledgement.

Information about acknowledgements:

The Land Acknowledgement posted by EQI is intended to serve as a starting point for people in the UWM community. Anyone can use it and all are encouraged to do so when hosting gatherings or teaching a course, especially one connected to concepts of place and identity. There are no rules about these statements and some would say that simply posting such statements is not enough. We see this as the beginning of a conversation or connection to a much bigger story. The best way to acknowledge the place where we live and work is to know and appreciate it. We encourage all students and staff to trace and celebrate their own connections to land and water and get to know the local indigenous history of sustainable, resilient human presence in this and other places. Individuals should know the nearby native nations and be encouraged to work toward reconciliation where land has been taken and culture erased. The best acknowledgement is one that begins with the facts and is adapted to reflect personal and communal experiences. The staff at EQI are available to answer specific questions as needed.

At present, there are 573 federally recognized American Indian and Alaska Native tribes and villages with government-to-government relationships with the United States. The citizens of these nations are also citizens of the United States and their languages, cultures and histories are a part of our shared story. Land acknowledgements help us remember these nations and the ancestors who were stewards of the places where we live.

For more information about treaties and tribal nations visit one of these websites:

Grand Portage Trust Lands Agency
Vallen Cook, the current leader of Grand Portage Trust Lands Agency, took the land acknowledgement statement practice one step farther by asking Margaret Noodin for a poem to share the beauty of his home when he goes visiting.

University of Wisconsin Freshwater Collaborative Version:
As a system of universities in Wisconsin we share stewardship of the land and water between the Michigami, the full system of Great Lakes, and Michiziibi, the great Mississippi River, with the current sovereign nations of Potawatomi, Ho-Chunk, Menominee, Ojibwe, Oneida and Mohican people along with the ancestors before them. Together we commit to being connected to this space, increasing our knowledge of it and transmitting that knowledge to future generations.

National Wildlife Federation version
The name Milwaukee comes from the Anishinaabe and/or Algonquin words for the “good land” or “gathering place”; the area has probably gone by many overlapping names, because it has been a place where people come together for thousands of years. In recent history, Milwaukee has been home to people of the Potawatomi, Ojibwe, Odawa, Fox, Ho-Chunk, Menominee, Sauk, and Oneida nations, and more. Today, more than 7,000 Milwaukee residents identify as Native – the largest concentration of Native people in Wisconsin – and the community includes people from across Wisconsin, the Midwest, and North America. As we virtually gather in Milwaukee for WildlifeUnite, the National Wildlife Federation respectfully acknowledges and honors the ancestral owners and stewards of this place, who preceded – and survived – European colonization and live here today. We offer our respect to the elders, past, present and future, in Milwaukee and across Wisconsin’s Native nations. Even as we honor the people of Milwaukee, we also note that participants in this online conference will be attending from many different lands across North America. We encourage everyone to learn more and recognize the Native people whose ground you stand upon.

Woodland Pattern Version
We acknowledge that in Milwaukee we live and work on traditional Potawatomi, Ho-Chunk, and Menominee homelands along the southwest shores of Michigami, part of North America’s largest system of freshwater lakes, where the Milwaukee, Menominee, and Kinnickinnic rivers meet and the people of Wisconsin’s sovereign Anishinaabe, Ho-Chunk, Menominee, Oneida, and Mohican nations remain present. We further acknowledge the grave evil colonialism introduced to these lands ​through genocide as well as slavery, and also via racist and xenophobic ​beliefs, laws​, and practices that continue to inflict harm upon Black, brown, and Indigenous lives. We honor those who have lived—and do live, now—at these intersections of identity and experience, and are committed to the active dismantling of white supremacy.