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The Indiana Territory was the name of a British territory in North America bounded by the Mississippi River to the west, the Ohio River to the north, the Appalachian watershed to the east, and the border of the Colony of West Florida to the south. Acquired from France by the Treaty of Paris of 1763, it was intended from the beginning to be a refuge and reservation for various Indian allies of the British crown - hence its name.
The Territory was first organized by the Indian Reserve Act of 1775, which granted its residents the right to elect a legislature and extended to them several other rights that the European-descended citizens of other colonies already possessed. In 1794, with the consent of the local tribes, the northeastern corner was separated and opened to settlement as the Colony of Vandalia. In 1831 the Indiana Territory adopted a written constitution based on that of Great Britain, allowing it to call itself a full-fledged province, and in that capacity it acceded to the Commonwealth of America the following year.