Presentation on theme: "The ancestors of the present day Native Americans came to North America from Asia across the Bering Strait between 36.000 and 12.000 years ago. They were."— Presentation transcript:
The ancestors of the present day Native Americans came to North America from Asia across the Bering Strait between 36.000 and 12.000 years ago. They were all hunters.
They lived in many different environments, worshipping elements of nature such as the sun, thunder, rain, as well as the bear, the wolf and the deer. With time, many of them became farmers and craftsmen. Let us have a close look at three representative groups.
The League of Iroquois consisted of 5 tribes: Seneca, Cayuga, Onondaga, Oneida and Mohawk. They lived in the north-east near the Great Lakes. The Five Nations joined together to form the most powerful tribal government in North America. We do not know precisely when or where the Iroquois formed their union, but the tradition says that the formation happened in the fifteenth century.
Iroquois big families lived in large houses, ”called longhouses ’’. The large houses formed villages, usually protected by palisades and often situated on hills near water. In the neighbourhood they cut down the trees and grew different plants. Every fifteen or twenty years they changed their territory for a new one.
Another important group are Warriors of the Central Plains - Blackfeet, Cheyenne and Dakota. They hunted for buffalo, for food leather and bones. Their houses - similar to tents teepees, were constructed in a few hours and quickly deconstructed. Women took care of building the teepees.
Tattoos and body painting were popular among the Plains warriors. They believed that the decorations protected their bodies in fight. Often the warrior ’ s horse was decorated, too. In the traditional rituals of war they took a scalp from the dead or wounded enemy. The scalp was a symbol of courage and victory. The warriors used bows, clubs, hatchets and tomahawks.
For more than five hundred years the Indians travelled around the Plains. There were representatives of different language families - Algonquian, Kiowan, Athapaskan and many other. To communicate, they invented their own sign language. It was also used as a universal language by trappers and soldiers and even men from Europe.
The Northwest Coast People - Haida, Tsimshian, and Kwakiutl found their food in the sea but all necessary materials for building and crafts they took from the nearby forests. The fishing season began in the spring and ended in September. The sea was full of herring, tuna, seals, otters, sea lions, dolphins and whales. They also collected shellfish and sea bird eggs.
They lived in large plank houses built from logs and boards. Men were responsible for the education of sister ’ s children while their own children depended upon the wife ’ s relatives. Children learned from their elders about the history of the clan and the deeds of the warriors.