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The Navajo get sheep – American history

By |2017-08-13T22:25:08+00:00August 13th, 2017|History, Native American|

Navajo with sheep Navajo people moved south into the south-west part of North America from their home in Canada about 1400 AD. So when the Spanish invaders came in the 1500s, the Navajo (Dine is what they call themselves) were themselves pretty new to the area. When the Navajo arrived, they had been nomads, who lived [...]

The Apache get horses – American history

By |2018-10-02T06:16:03+00:00August 12th, 2017|History, Native American|

The Apache get horses: an Apache rock painting, ca. 1800 AD Who were the Apache? Like their Navajo cousins, the Apache people were Athabascan. They moved south into the south-west part of North America from their home in Canada about 1400 AD. So when the Spanish invaders came in the 1500s, the Apache hadn't been in the Southwest [...]

Early Native American languages

By |2018-04-07T17:05:42+00:00August 10th, 2017|Literature, Native American|

Inuit carving of a fish The languages Native American people spoke (and still speak) in North America fall into several groups. The Cherokee and the Iroquois, on the East Coast, spoke Iroquoian languages. In the midwest, the Sioux, the Crow, and the Mandan spoke related languages. In the Pacific Northwest, the Chinook and the Nez Perce shared a language group. In the Southwest, the Shoshone, [...]

Early Shawnee history – Native Americans

By |2018-04-07T17:05:39+00:00August 9th, 2017|History, Native American|

Serpent Mound (Ohio, about 500 BC?) Shawnee people were related to the Algonquin and the Cree, and spoke a related Athabascan language, but they lived a little further south, in the mid-west (modern Ohio, Virginia, Pennsylvania, Indiana, and Kentucky). Indeed, the word "Shawnee" may mean "south people". The Shawnee lived more like their neighbors than like [...]

Paleo-Indians – the first Native Americans

By |2018-04-08T11:23:17+00:00August 9th, 2017|History, Native American|

Pacific coast of North America Archaeologists call the time just after people first came to North America the Paleo-Indian period. During the Paleo-Indian period, all the people in North America were nomads and got their food by hunting and gathering, and especially by fishing. Some of these people stayed in Alaska and Canada. We call them the Athabascans or the Dene. Other [...]

Navajo history – Dine – Native Americans

By |2018-04-07T17:05:37+00:00August 9th, 2017|History, Native American|

A Navajo dog today After the ancestors of most Native Americans crossed the Bering Land Bridge, about 12,000 BC, they split up and settled in different parts of North America. The Navajo started out as part of the Athabascans or Dene. Like other Athabascans, they settled in west-central Canada (modern Alberta or Saskatchewan). Sometime around 1300 or [...]

Cree history – Native Americans

By |2018-04-07T17:05:34+00:00August 8th, 2017|History, Native American, Where|

Typical Cree environment - Great Lakes wetland The Cree probably started out as part of the Athabascan crew. When other Native people spread out south and east, the Athabascans, or Dene, stayed up north. Their language became different. But then later, they moved south and east too. The Athabascans who moved to the [...]

Early California history – Native Americans

By |2018-04-07T17:05:33+00:00August 8th, 2017|History, Native American|

Stone carving of a fish (San Francisco, ca. 7000 BC) The first people probably reached California about 17,000 BC. They were probably fishing people, coming south along the Pacific coast in small boats, following the fish. Some of them kept on going south and reached Central America and then South America. Some moved inland, fishing out of Lake Tahoe and [...]

Apache history – Native Americans

By |2018-04-07T17:05:32+00:00August 8th, 2017|History, Native American|

West Texas Sometime around 1300 AD, some of the Athabascans, the ancestors of the Apache and Navajo people, left their homes in what is now western Canada and slowly travelled south to what is now Arizona, New Mexico, and western Texas. This may have been because of the climate change known as the Little Ice Age. The Navajo people [...]

Algonquin history – Early Native Americans

By |2018-04-07T17:05:32+00:00August 8th, 2017|History, Native American|

Algonquin history: Algonquin arrowhead from about 1 AD. It's made from stone imported from south of the Great Lakes From Athabascan to Algonquin Algonquin tradition says that people who called themselves Algonquins first lived along the Atlantic Coast, in the north-eastern part of North America, north of the Iroquois and south of the Inuit (in modern Canada). [...]