First Americans of Virginia
American Indians of Virginia. Meera Mehtaji
Where did they live? The Indians of Virginia lived in the area North America now know as Eastern Woodland Region. The eastern woodland region had many trees and dense forests. The climate of Virginia had four seasons, spring, summer, autumn and winter.
Spring Summer Autumn Winter
Three American Indian language groups on the map of Virginia.
The Algonquian Language speakers:- Powhatan Indians.
The Powhatan Indians lived in Coastal Plain or Tidewater region. Present before the European Settlers. Had their own territories, language, customs and traditions. Chief Powhatan united thirty Algonquian tribes to form the Powhatan chiefdom.
The Powhatan Chief.
Food for every day living.
The Powhatan people used the different climate of Virginia to get a variety of food. In different seasons they had different ways of finding food.
Spring Powhatan people dung for clams, fished in the nearby rives and picked wild berries in the forest. By the end of spring they would plant seed for corn, beans, squash, sunflowers, pumpkins, and tobacco. The climate is warm and with rain shower. Good for seeds to grow. Powhatan Indians fishing
Summer Climate is hot and dry.
Harvest the spring crops and planted more for crops to grow till fall. Tobacco field Corn field
Autumn Climate:- Cool with rain showers
Harvested the crops and prepared them to last over winter.
Winter Climate:- Cold Ate dried fruits and vegetables they had grown during the planting season. Fresh Food:- hunting birds, and animals such as wild turkey, deer, squirrel and rabbit.
Clothing Powhatan used deer skin to make clothes.
They decorated their clothes with shells, animal claws and pearls.
Houses Powhatan people kept warm during winter by building long, one-room houses. They made the houses out of small trees and barks. Their families and relatives could all live in these houses. Their houses were called long houses.
Siouan Language speakers:- Monacans
The Siouan language speakers lived in the Piedmont region. Monacan were part of this group.
Woman Grew corn, beans, and squash.
Gathered nuts, berries, and other foods form the trees in the forest. They made household goods out of wood, bones, animal skin, and other available natural resources.
Men Hunting and fishing.
Protected their homelands by becoming warriors. Did not allow other Indian group to invade their lands.
Iroquoian language speakers:- Cherokee
Lived in southwestern Virginia and southern Virginia. Lived in small communities. Located on fertile lands along side the rivers.
Houses Houses were made of wood frame covered with woven vines and tree saplings and plastered with mud. Later replaced with log structures.
Village life Children took the family name of the mother.
Women had equal voice in the tribe. Each village had council houses where ceremonies and tribal meetings were held using democratic process.
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