SKIP navigation
History Department
History Department

Dennis J. Smith


Missouri Valley History Conference Coordinator

Director, Native American Studies

Associate Professor of History

287C ASH, 402-554-3688(email)

Born and raised in Montana, Dr. Smith is an enrolled member of the Assiniboine Tribe, Fort Peck Reservation, Montana. With an Assiniboine, wheat-farming father who loved to hunt and fish, the family reveled in much of Montana’s glorious outdoors.

A former physical therapist, Dr. Smith returned to his great interest – Native American history – earning a M.A. in History from the University of Montana in 1983. He began his academic career as Academic Dean of Fort Peck Community College (a tribally-controlled college), and later directed the Indian Studies Program at Morningside College [Sioux City, Iowa] (1989-2000). He received a Ph.D. in History from the University of Nebraska in 2001, and joined UNO in 2002. Dr. Smith is an active member of the Native American Studies Program.

Dr. Smith’s areas of study emphasize Native American history and cultures (especially northern plains tribes), federal Indian policies, and Native American environmentalism. His primary interest continues to be Fort Peck Assiniboine culture and history. He is coauthor of The History of the Assiniboine and Sioux Tribes of the Fort Peck Reservation: 1600-2000 (2008; revised ed. 2012, which extends study to 2012).

In addition to three beautiful daughters, outside interests include contemporary energy and environmental issues, Wimbledon, University of Montana Grizzlies football (and go Huskers), and both kinds of music: country and western.

Frequently Taught Courses:

· Introduction to Native American Studies
· The Sioux Tribe (history)
· Native American Environmentalism (history)