Treaty of Corporation
The Treaty of Corporation was signed on July 17, 1955 by the United States and tribal leaders of the Disneyland Confederation. It granted American recognition of Disneyland’s territory and sovereignty.
At the conclusion of the Mexican-American War, the ancestral lands of the Disneyland Confederation were annexed by the United States. Members of the Disneyland tribes were displaced. Many were forcibly removed to unproductive lands and lived subsequently in squalor and poverty.
In the early twentieth century, a growing movement called Disneyism blossomed among the Wahtehdausnee exiles. By the 1930s, the American Disneyist Organization, led by Mickey Mouse, Oswald Rabbit, and later Donald Duck became an important force in American political and cultural life.
Acts of Protest
During World War II, many members of the Wahtehdausnee served valiantly in the United States military, only to come home to second-class citizenship. By the early 1950s, Oswald Rabbit began leading a series of acts of civil disobedience in an attempt to gain redress for the many Wahtehdausnee grievances. The most prominent of these protests was the Gracey Estate sit-in on July 4, 1954. It was during this demonstration that Mickey Mouse made his infamous “I Dream of Having” speech.
By early 1955, with mounting public pressure and with the backing of Secretary of State John Foster Dulles, President Eisenhower negotiated an agreement with leaders of the Disneyist movement. This agreement, which came to be known as the Treaty of Corporation, would return the ancestral territories to the Wahtehdausnee in addition to granting the Wahtehdausnee full independence and sovereignty.