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Navajo Nation surpasses Cherokee to become largest US tribe

Navajo Nation Monument Valley
Posted at 7:59 AM, May 19, 2021
and last updated 2021-05-19 10:59:10-04

NAVAJO NATION, AZ — The Navajo Nation has by far the largest land mass of any Native American tribe in the country.

Now, it's boasting the largest enrolled population, too.

The number grew to nearly 400,000 as a result of payments made to individual Navajos for hardships during the pandemic.

The tribe now tops the Cherokee Nation's enrollment of 392,000, but a tribal spokeswoman says the Oklahoma tribe also is growing.

The U.S. Treasury Department will use tribes' own enrollment figures to pay out a chunk of the $20 billion set aside for them in the latest virus relief funding package.

Tribes have until Monday to submit data online.