Who is an American Indian?

As a general principle, an American Indian is a person who is of some degree Indian blood and is recognized as an Indian by a tribe/village and/or the United States. There exists no universally accepted rule for establishing a person’s identity as an American Indian. The criteria for tribal membership differ from one tribe to the next. To determine a particular tribe’s criteria, one must contact that tribe directly. For its own purposes, the Bureau of the Census counts anyone as an Indian who declares to be such. By recent counts, there are currently more than two million American Indians, including Native Alaskans and Native Hawaiians.