Johnson v. McIntosh -101 - An analysis of the Origin of Federal Indian Law & Property Law Johnson v. McIntosh (1823) is a property law case acknowledged as the first “federal Indian law” case because it said Native Nations do not have title to their lands. The religious basis of Johnson is usually not acknowledged: “Christian discovery,” typically shortened to “discovery.”
Many readings of Johnson minimize the negative impact of the case by focusing on positive sounding language about “Indian occupancy rights,” ignoring that “occupancy” is not ownership. Other readings minimize the federally controlled market in Native land that Johnson created when it said the US has an “exclusive right to extinguish … Indian …occupancy… by purchase or by conquest.”
Conventional discussions will not tell you that Chief Justice John Marshall used Johnson v. McIntosh to put the continent (or at least what he imagined of it) up for sale to the highest bidder: "Indian Land For Sale" — "Federal Right of Preemption" — "Make checks payable to the US Treasury."
Johnson v. McIntosh -101 - An analysis of the Origin of Federal Indian Law & Property Law examines the text of Johnson v. McIntosh. The presentation unpacks the 200-year old decision that still stands today as the foundation of federal Indian law.
* If you are interested in participating in all three parts of the Marshall Trilogy purchase all three parts at a savings here: The Marshall Trilogy