Difference between revisions of "North American Indians"

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'''North American Indians''' (also '''Native Americans''') are the original inhabitants of the Americas. [[Archaeology|Archaeological]] evidence has led some researchers to claim that there has been 10 to 30 thousand years of continuous occupation of the [[America]]s  by indigenous people. However, [[Young Earth Creationist|Young Earth Creationists]] contend that the universe is only 6,000 years old, so they accept the [[origins theory]] model used by young earth [[creation science | creation scientists]] which believes modern Indians to be the descendants of [[Noah]] and his family who survived [[Great Flood]] on [[Noah's Ark]]. Indians are the descendants of those groups that migrated from Asia to North America at the end of the post-flood [[ice age]], or before the supercontinent of [[Pangea]] broke apart. The idea that God simply generated Indians into existence in the Americas is considered by most creation researchers to be contra-Biblical.
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'''North American Indians''' (also '''Native Americans''') are the original inhabitants of the Americas. The Native Americans of North America are typically considered to be all those tribes north of Central Mexico.  While technically part of North America, most archaeologists tend to place the civilizations of Central Mexico into a separate category.<ref>Swidler, Nina, Dongoske, Roger. 1997.  ''Native Americans and Archaeologists: Stepping Stones to Common Ground.'' Walnut Creek: AltaMira Press.</ref> Tribes in North America maintained a wide variety of [[subsistence pattern]]s, from hunting and gathering, to intensive agriculture.  North America is also home to two of the most unusual groups of hunter-gatherers, the Northwest Coast tribes, and the Aleuts.  The first Native Americans are believed to have migrated from Asia via the [[Bering land bridge]], the exposed continental shelf between Asia and N. America during the last Ice Age.  There are also those that subscribe to a similar migration by sea that followed the ancient coastline from Asia around the Bering land mass.  A small group of researchers claim to have uncovered evidence of possible migration from Europe during the same time period, but the evidence is still heavily contested.   
 
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The Native Americans of North America are typically considered to be all those tribes north of Central Mexico.  While technically part of North America, most archaeologists tend to place the civilizations of Central Mexico into a separate category.<ref>Swidler, Nina, Dongoske, Roger. 1997.  ''Native Americans and Archaeologists: Stepping Stones to Common Ground.'' Walnut Creek: AltaMira Press.</ref> Tribes in North America maintained a wide variety of [[subsistence pattern]]s, from hunting and gathering, to intensive agriculture.  North America is also home to two of the most unusual groups of hunter-gatherers, the Northwest Coast tribes, and the Aleuts.  The first Native Americans are believed to have migrated from Asia via the [[Bering land bridge]], the exposed continental shelf between Asia and N. America during the last Ice Age.  There are also those that subscribe to a similar migration by sea that followed the ancient coastline from Asia around the Bering land mass.  A small group of researchers claim to have uncovered evidence of possible migration from Europe during the same time period, but the evidence is still heavily contested.   
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While the American Indian population once numbered over 100 million, over 90% were killed by [[smallpox|European diseases]] and fighting with the U.S. and European governments over their land.<ref>[http://www.powersource.com/cocinc/history/trail.htm Trail of Tears]</ref>
 
While the American Indian population once numbered over 100 million, over 90% were killed by [[smallpox|European diseases]] and fighting with the U.S. and European governments over their land.<ref>[http://www.powersource.com/cocinc/history/trail.htm Trail of Tears]</ref>

Revision as of 12:54, 16 February 2008

North American Indians (also Native Americans) are the original inhabitants of the Americas. The Native Americans of North America are typically considered to be all those tribes north of Central Mexico. While technically part of North America, most archaeologists tend to place the civilizations of Central Mexico into a separate category.[1] Tribes in North America maintained a wide variety of subsistence patterns, from hunting and gathering, to intensive agriculture. North America is also home to two of the most unusual groups of hunter-gatherers, the Northwest Coast tribes, and the Aleuts. The first Native Americans are believed to have migrated from Asia via the Bering land bridge, the exposed continental shelf between Asia and N. America during the last Ice Age. There are also those that subscribe to a similar migration by sea that followed the ancient coastline from Asia around the Bering land mass. A small group of researchers claim to have uncovered evidence of possible migration from Europe during the same time period, but the evidence is still heavily contested.

While the American Indian population once numbered over 100 million, over 90% were killed by European diseases and fighting with the U.S. and European governments over their land.[2]

Culture Areas of North America

American Indians of North America are generally divided into culture areas according to similarities in geography, environment, subsistence patterns, language family, and similar social practices. According to the Handbook of North American Indians, there are ten such cultural areas.[3]

Arctic
Greenland, extreme northern Canada, and the northern and western coastlines of Alaska.
Subarctic
Most of central Canada and interior Alaska.
Northeast
New England, Nova Scotia, the Great Lakes region, the Chesapeake Bay area, and most of current day W. Virginia, the Ohio River valley, and Illinois.
Southeast
N. Carolina excluding the NE corner, western Virginia, southern W. Virginia, and all the southern states east of the Mississippi River, in addition to parts of Arkansas, Louisiana, and eastern Texas.
Plains
the entire Midwest United States from Texas north to southern parts of Canada.
Southwest
Central Mexico north into W. Texas, NM, and AZ.
Great Basin
Nevada, Utah, N. Arizona, W. Colorado, W. Wyoming, S. Idaho, SE Oregon, and parts of W. California.
California
Interior and Coastal California and N. Baja.
Northwest Coast
N. California to S. Alaska along 1500 miles of coastline.
Plateau
Parts of Oregon, Washington, N. Idaho, W. Montana, and SW Canada.

References

  1. Swidler, Nina, Dongoske, Roger. 1997. Native Americans and Archaeologists: Stepping Stones to Common Ground. Walnut Creek: AltaMira Press.
  2. Trail of Tears
  3. Washburn, Wilcomb E. 1998. Handbook Of North American Indians, Vol. 4, History of Indian-White Relations. Washington: Smithsonian Institute.

See Also

American Indian

Native American

Trail of Tears

Jamestown Massacre