The Seneca Nation (Onondowahgah), meaning the People of the Great Hill, was one of the five original nations of the Iroquois (Haudenosaunee) Confederacy.  Their traditional homeland was between the Genesee River and Canandaigua Lake in what is now called New York State. The Seneca were also known as the "Keepers of the Western Door" because they lived west of all the other Haudenosaunee nations.  They were responsible for guarding the Iroquois Confederacy from threats from the west.


The Seneca sided with the British during the Revolutionary War.


There are 5 Seneca communities in the United States and Canada shown in blue on the map above.

Click on the images below for information on each of the five Seneca communities.

Click the arrows to move to the next slide. 

Photographs of Cattaraugus contributed by Lily Jones, Seneca Bear Clan

© 2014 Iroquois Indian Museum created with

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