the ever growing tree wampumAs a gathering of all the Chiefs from all nations of the Haudenosaunee Confederacy the Grand Council is the world’s oldest representative democracy.

With 50 Chiefs in total representing all the clans from all the nations they work to resolve disputes and plan for the welfare of all the people. As stated by the Peacemaker, Onondaga stands as the fire keepers for the Grand Council. Grand Council Chiefs are divided into Elder Brothers and Younger Brothers with the Mohawks, Onondagas and Senecas making up the Elder Brothers with the Cayugas and Oneidas as the Younger Brothers.

The Tuscaroras who joined the league after the original joining have no voice within Grand Council and can only speak if it will help the nations. When they do have an issue to be discussed it is voiced through the Cayugas.