There are approximately 2.4 million American Indians in the U.S. (almost 1% of the U.S. population) (Census Bureau, June 1999). There are 556 federally recognized tribes (December 1998 BIA list).
There are 314 reservations the smallest is the Likely Rancheria in California with under 2 acres, and the largest is Navajo with about 16 million acres in Arizona, Utah and New Mexico. There are also tribes without land bases, such as the Ponca of Nebraska and the Lytton Rancheria in California. 22% of the American Indian population lives on reservations and trust lands.
The smallest tribe, the Augustine Band of Mission Indians in California, has a population of one. The largest tribe, Cherokee, has a population of approximately 308,000.
39% of the American Indian population is under the age of 20 (29% for total U.S. population).
8% of the American Indian population is over 60 years old (17% for total U.S. population).
American Indians tend to have larger families than the national average. About 80% of American Indians live in extended-family households.
34% of American Indians over age 25 never graduated from high school.
9% of American Indians have a bachelor's degree or higher (3% have graduate or professional degrees).
One-third of American Indian households lives below the poverty level (Census Bureau, 1995).
In 1996, 67% of the tribes had no gaming operations. Of the tribes that did have gaming, 10 of them earned more than 50% of the gaming income (General Accounting Office, A Profile of the Indian Gaming Industry, May 1997).
Of the American Indian households located on reservations
1. 20% lack complete plumbing facilities (hot and cold piped water, a flush toilet, and a bathtub or shower).
2. 11% lack complete plumbing and are crowded (more than 1 person per room).
3. About 1 in 5 dispose of sewage by means other than public sewer, septic tank or cesspool (for example, outhouse or chemical toilet).
4. 18% don't have complete kitchens (piped water, a range or cookstove, and refrigerator).
5. 1 in every 3 homes are heated by wood.
Source: Based on the 1990 U.S. Census. The data for American Indians (American Indian, Eskimo and Aleut) are based on self-identification of race; therefore, the data doesn't represent enrolled tribal members.