County of Oneida v. Oneida Indian Nation
United States Supreme Court
470 U.S. 226 (1985)
The Oneida Indians (plaintiffs) lost most of Oneida land through treaties with the United States. As of the mid-1700s, the Oneida Indians lived on a 300,000-acre reservation in central New York. In 1790, the United States passed the Indian Trade and Intercourse Act (ITIA), 1 Stat. 137, which prohibited the sale of Indian land unless the sale was governed by treaty. However, in 1795, the State of New York purchased the remainder of Oneida land from the Oneida Indians in exchange for cash payments. In 1970, the Oneida Indians sued the Counties of Oneida and Madison, New York (Counties) (defendants), alleging that the county purchase of land from the Oneida Indians in 1795 violated the ITIA and was void. The Oneida Indians sought to recover as damages the fair market value of the land. The district court held that the 1795 sale violated ITIA. The United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit affirmed. The United States Supreme Court granted certiorari. The Counties argued before the Supreme Court that the Oneida Indians had no right to bring a federal common-law claim for violations of ITIA.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Powell, J.)
Dissent (Stevens, J.)
What to do next…
Unlock this case brief with a free (no-commitment) trial membership of Quimbee.
You’ll be in good company: Quimbee is one of the most widely used and trusted sites for law students, serving more than 97,000 law students since 2011. Some law schools—such as Yale, Vanderbilt, Berkeley, and the University of Illinois—even subscribe directly to Quimbee for all their law students. Read our student testimonials.
Learn more about Quimbee’s unique (and proven) approach to achieving great grades at law school.
Quimbee is a company hell-bent on one thing: helping you get an “A” in every course you take in law school, so you can graduate at the top of your class and get a high-paying law job. We’re not just a study aid for law students; we’re the study aid for law students. Read more about Quimbee.
Here's why 175,000 law students have relied on our case briefs:
- Written by law professors and practitioners, not other law students. 14,000 briefs, keyed to 188 casebooks. Top-notch customer support.
- The right amount of information, includes the facts, issues, rule of law, holding and reasoning, and any concurrences and dissents.
- Access in your classes, works on your mobile and tablet. Massive library of related video lessons and high quality multiple-choice questions.
- Easy to use, uniform format for every case brief. Written in plain English, not in legalese. Our briefs summarize and simplify; they don’t just repeat the court’s language.