Woodland Region The Iroquois lived in the Northeast region of the United States called the Woodlands. This land is fertile, thick and green with different types of trees such as oak, elm, fir and maple. This region has many streams, rivers, and lakes.
Clothing Iroquois men wore breechcloths with long leggings. Iroquois women wore wraparound skirts with shorter leggings. Men did not originally wear shirts in Iroquois culture, but women often wore a tunic called an overdress. Iroquois people also wore moccasins on their feet and heavy robes in winter. In colonial times, the Iroquois adapted European costume like long cloth shirts, decorating them with fancy beadwork and ribbon appliqué.
Food The Iroquois were farming people. Iroquois women did most of the farming, planting crops of corn, beans, and squash and harvesting wild berries and herbs. Iroquois men did most of the hunting, shooting deer and elk and fishing in the rivers. Iroquois Indian dishes included cornbread, soups, and stews cooked on stone hearths.
Housing The Iroquois people lived in villages of longhouses, which were large wood- frame buildings covered with sheets of elm bark. Iroquois longhouses were up to a hundred feet long, and each one housed an entire clan (as many as 60 people.) Click here to see inside
Southwest Region The Navajo lived in the Southwest region of the United States and northern Mexico. The region is mostly flat-topped mesas, steep- walled canyons, mountains, and deserts. This is a very dry region where few plants grow.
Clothing Navajo clothing for both men and women initially was deerskin for shirts and skirts. The men later wore cotton or velvet shirts with no collars, breeches below the knee, and moccasins. Women gradually wore the "squaw dress," made of plain dark blankets.
Food The Navajo men hunted deer, and the women took care of the sheep and corn. Sheep provided meat for food and wool for clothing. They prepared for years of drought by storing their dried corn. This land is arid (dry). In order to survive these conditions, most of the Indians turned to farming in small gardens. Their farm crops survived only if the rains came.
Housing Navajo made their homes of wooden poles, tree bark, and mud. They called their homes hogans. The door of the hogans always pointed to the east because the sun rises in the east. The hogans usually had only one room and no windows. The Navajo usually had one hogan in the desert and one hogan in the mountains because they needed to make sure they could find food and water and also grazing land for their sheep. Click here to see inside
Plains- Lakota Sioux Region FoodHousing Clothing
Plains Region The Lakota Sioux tribes lived in the Great Plains region of central United States. This area mostly flat grasslands with roaming herds of bison and deer. The climate was harsh. The summers were very hot and winters were very cold.
Clothing Sioux women wore long deerskin or elkskin dresses. Sioux men wore breechcloths and leggings and buckskin shirts. The Sioux also wore moccasins on their feet and buffalo-hide robes in bad weather. In colonial times, the Sioux adapted European costume such as vests, cloth dresses, and blanket robes. Sioux warriors and chiefs were well-known for their impressive feathered warbonnets, but they didn't wear them in everyday life.
Food The Sioux Indians' diet was mostly meat, especially buffalo, elk and deer, which they cooked in pits or dried and pounded into a powder and mixed with dried pounded berries and melted fat, called pemmican. The meat was sometimes roasted on a spit or broiled in a skinbag with hot stones to make soup. The Sioux also ate many wild, fruits, nuts, and berries in addition to meat. Wild turnips, potatoes, and other roots were favorite foods which they added to soups.
Housing The Lakota Sioux people lived in large buffalo-hide tents called tipis (or teepees). Tipis were carefully designed to set up and break down quickly. An entire Sioux village could be packed up and ready to move within an hour. Originally tipis were only about 12 feet high, but after the Sioux got horses, they began building them twice that size. Click here to see inside
Northwest Region The Tlingit tribes lived in the Northwest region of the United States and Canada. They lived mostly along the ocean coastline and rivers of southern Alaska. This is a temperate rainforest region with lush plant life and lots of rainfall.
Clothing In hot weather, men wore breechcloths made of animal skins or woven grass or reeds. When it got cold and rainy in the winter they added animal skin or woven cedar shirts and leggings. Women wore skirts and capes of woven cedar strips. In the winter, clothing was made of animal skins. Even in winter, people often went barefoot.. The Tlingit wore hats made of roots. Men and women wore ear and nose rings. Ceremonial dress includes carved masks, weapons and "Chilikat" robes.
Food Food is a central part of Tlingit culture. The Tlingit gather much of their food from the beaches. “When the tide goes out the table is set." Tlingit saying They gather not only from the beach but from the forest. Their diet includes fruits, nuts, berries, and roots found near their villages. They are excellent fisherman. Salmon is a main part of their diet. Tlingit also used canoes to hunt seal and other animals.
Housing Tlingit people lived in towns with wood buildings. Boards were cut from cedar trees to build the large houses. Families of the same clan lived together. The houses had a hole in the roof to let smoke out, but no windows and no rooms. Large items like fishing gear and paddles were stored in the rafters. Beautiful clan symbols were sometimes painted on the outside. Huge totem poles telling the story of the clan were placed in front. Click here to see inside
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