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6 years ago


Mesa Verde National Park
6 years ago

Mesa Verde, Spanish for green table, offers a spectacular look into the lives of the Ancestral Pueblo people who made it their home for over 700 years, from A.D. 600 to A.D. 1300. Today, the park protects over 4,000 known archeological sites, including 600 cliff dwellings. These sites are some of the most notable and best preserved in the United States.

Ancestral Puebloans of Mesa Verde

About 1,400 years ago, long before Europeans explored North America, a group of people living in the Four Corners region chose Mesa Verde for their home. For more than 700 years they and their descendants lived and flourished here, eventually building elaborate stone communities in the sheltered alcoves of the canyon walls. Then, in the late A.D. 1200s, in the span of a generation or two, they left their homes and moved away. Mesa Verde National Park preserves a spectacular reminder of this ancient culture.

found at

6 years ago

Kootenai Falls

Photo Courtesy of Gene & Bernice Yahvah

The rock cairns were constructed to ensure that the builder would stay "in the good graces of the many spirits which inhabited the land."

A member of the Kootenai Tribe said the cairns may have been built to give good luck to travelers who took the risky portage route. Offerings to the traveler's guardian spirit would be placed on the cairn to "insure the success of one's journey."

Thompson was called Kookoosint by the Native Americans. It means "man who looks at stars." He traveled with an array of surveying instruments and a telescope.

The power of the river and the danger of the portage was not lost on the famous explorer.

He wrote in his diary: "The River had steep banks of rocks and only 30 yards in width; this space was full of violent eddies, which threatened us with destruction; at wherever the river contracted, the case was always the same, the current was swift; yet to look at the surface, the eddies make it appear to move as much backward as forward."

Thompson also wrote that he traded with two canoe loads of Indians in the area for "12 singed muskrats and a shoulder of antelope" providing him and Finan McDonald with something other than moss bread and dried carp to eat.

Swinging Bridge

Despite his concern with the portage route, Thompson predicted the Kootenai River Trail, the Moccasin Trail or as it was called later, "The Wolf Creek Trail", would become a major route through this area.

McDonald established a trading post near what became later the townsite of Jennings, eight miles upstream from the present city of Libby.

The falls and river trail saw the continued light traffic of fur trappers and Native Americans for nearly a half century.

In 1845 the Jesuit missionary, Pierre Jean DeSmet, passed through the falls portage during one of his journeys to the St. Ignatius Mission in the lower Flathead Valley.

"At a place called the Portage, the river crossed a defile of mountains, or rather of precipitous and frightful rocks; and the traveller is compelled, for the distance of eight miles, to risk his life at every step, and brave obstacles that appear, at first sight, insuperable."

"Whatever can be imagined appalling seems here combines to terrify the heart — livid gashes of ravines and precipices, giant peaks and ridges of varied hue, inaccessible pinnacles, fearful and unfathomable chasms filled with the sound of ever-precipitating waters, long, sloping and narrow banks, which must be alternately ascended, and many times have I been obliged to take the attitude of a quadruped and walk upon my hands."

"Amid these stern, heaven built walls of rocks, the water has forced its way in varied forms, and we find cataracts and whirlpools engulfing crags and trees, beneath their angry sway."

Traffic through the portage increased slowly until the later part of the 1800s when gold was discovered on Libby Creek and the migration of miners and settlers began.

Remnants of a couple of homesteads, including hay fields and an old apple orchard, sit along the old Kootenai Trail within the state wildlife management area.

Kootenai Falls

© Photo Courtesy of Lance Schelvan

Kootenai Falls is the last major waterfall on a Northwest river that has not been harnessed to produce electricity.

Thompson predicted the trail and portage around the falls would be a major transportation route some day. He also wrote about the expanses of timber and power that could be produced on the river.

Several proposals to construct a dam have been attempted.

In 1912 preliminary surveying and engineering was completed by Joseph Coram of Boston, according to old issues of The Western News.

Coram had secured a 10,000 cubic-foot per second water right and proposed a $6 million project that would ultimately produce 70,000 horsepower.

The slow moving project was lost in the aftermath of World War I. Kootenai Falls Sign

The latest threat occurred during the late 1970

6 years ago

                        Kootenai Falls

A River Runs Over It

To the Kootenai Tribe, the Falls is a sacred site - the center of the world, a place where tribal members can commune with spiritual forces.   

Long before it can be seen, it is heard. Tons of bright green water crash over rocks as the Kootenai River loses 300 feet in elevation traveling a few hundred yards down river.

Kootenai Falls

Imagine the sound of Kootenai Falls before the railroad, before the highway with its perpetual whine of diesel and gasoline engines. Imagine 80,000 to 100,000 cubic-feet per second racing downstream before Libby Dam, nearly 30 miles upstream, was built.

Swinging Bridge

Photo Courtesy of Jim & Marge Sullivan

The steep slopes and loose rock cliffs forced early travelers into close communion with the falls.

The Kootenai Indians moved into the area in the 1500s, according to historians.

They were originally called the Ksunka meaning "People of the standing arrow." To the Native Americans the standing arrow represented strength, unity and dexterity.

However, when the French encountered the Ksunka, they referred to them as the Kootenai, meaning "water people." The source of the word has puzzled people for many years. It is thought to be an Algonquin word.

The Kootenai or Kutenai or Kootenaha came to be known as "flat bow" or "flat bow people."

Confused? Other sources say the word Kootenai means "deer robes" alluding to the natives as excellent deer hunters and tanners.

The word Yaak is the Kootenai word for bow and was the Native American word for the Kootenai River while the Yaak River was called the Aak, meaning "arrow" by the early local residents.

A glance at any map of the area shows today's Yaak River poised as a nocked arrow to the Kootenai River's bow.

To the Kootenai tribe, the falls is a sacred site. They view it as the center of the world, a place where tribal members can commune with the spiritual forces that give direction to the tribe and to individual members.

Photo Courtesy of Gene & Bernice Yahvah

The falls area is a place where the Kootenai go for visions or meditation.

Archaeological evidence shows the Kootenai had Native American sweat lodges and encampments up and down he river valley from Pipe Creek — where light clay was found for pipes — to the falls area.

The Kootenai Tribe continues to view the falls as sacred. In 1993, Universal Studios had to negotiate with the tribe to secure permission to film "The River Wild" at the falls.

Native American concerns included environmental degradation and excessive publicity leading to desecration of the sacred site.

David Thompson, a Canadian explorer and employee of the Northwest Company, is considered the first white man into the Kootenai Country.

In 1808 Thompson used the Kootenai River as a highway through the area following the well-trod path of the Native Americans. He portaged around the falls, following cairns — piles of rocks marking the trail — built by the Kootenais.

Kootenai Falls

Photo Courtesy of Gene & Bernice Yahvah

6 years ago

Havasupai means "people of the blue green water".

Havasupais have dwelt in the Grand Canyon and the rest of north-central Arizona for over 1,000 years, practicing summertime irrigated farming in the canyons and wintertime hunting in the plateaus. The Havasupai Tribe Reservation is at the end of Indian Route 18 off historic Route 66. It consists of 188,077 acres of canyon land and broken plateaus abutting the western edge of the Grand Canyon's south rim. Residents live in Supai Village in the 3,000 foot deep Havasu Canyon. The reservation was established in 1880 and substantially enlarged in 1975. The tribe is known for its location, traditional cultural life, and beautiful arts and crafts.

6 years ago

6 years ago

The Havasupai Tribe and Havasupai Waterfalls

Havasuw `Baaja, the people of the blue green waters, are the traditional guardians of the Grand Canyon. Related to the Yuman, the Havasupai have from the beginning, inhabited the Grand Canyon and its environs.

By 1919 with the establishment of the Grand Canyon National Park, the Tribe was restricted to 518 acres, 5 miles wide and 12 miles long in a side canyon. The Tribe has since had returned to them 188,077 acres of their former homelands which makes up their reservation today.

The Havasupai Reservation is located in Coconino County, at the southwest corner of the Grand Canyon National Park. The nearest community to the Reservation is Peach Springs, 64 miles southwest from Hualapai Hilltop.

The Havasupai Reservation consists of plateau country, dissected with deep, scenic canyons characteristic of the Grand Canyon of the Colorado River. Notable geographic features include "The Great Thumb," Long Mesa, and Tenderfoot Mesa, which converge on the Coconino Plateau at the south end of the reservation.

Havasu (Cataract) Canyon, now the permanent home of the Havasupai Indian Tribe, is internationally known for its blue water and spectacular water falls adorned with travertine columns, shelves and skirts. Topography of the plateau areas varies from rolling, gentle slopes, to escarpments of outcrops of the Kaibab Limestone.

The population for the Havasupai Tribe is 639 with a median age of 24.8 years. The largest employer of the tribal members on the reservation is the Tribe. The main occupation of individual members is packing and working for tribal enterprises (tourism).

The Havasuw `Baaja, draw their strength from the land, which is sacred. Visitors are asked to preserve the magnificence of the Havasupai homeland and respect their natural resources which contribute to their spiritual direction. All visitors are asked to leave their liquor, drugs, weapons and pets at home and to take their trash out of the canyon.

The best way to reach Havasupai is from Highway 66, six miles east of Peach Springs, onto Indian Route 18, a 64 mile road to Hualapai Hilltop. From the Hilltop parking lot there is an eight mile trail to Supai Village. This trail may be traveled either by foot or horse.

6 years ago


First Day Tuesday, February 23, 1836

General Santa Anna with the vanguard of his army arrived in San Antonio close to sundown. A blood-red banner was run up an San Fernando Cathedral, signifying no quarter. Colonel William 'Travis ordered the red banner answered

with a cannon shot. The Mexican soldiers fired back and the siege of the Alamo began. It lasted 13 days.

Second Day, Wednesday, February 24, 1836

Colonel Bowie, gravely ill, turns over command to Colonel Travis. Travis sends Albert Martin. with a letter "To the people of Texas and All Americans in the World."

Third Day, Thursday, February 25, 1836

Messengers reach Fannin in Goliad. The Mexican batteries move closer. A strong norther blows in around 9:00 P.M.

Fourth Day, Friday, February 26, 1836

A skirmish takes place east of the fort while the Texans are hunting for wood. Mexican trooos try to cut water supply.

Fifth Day, Saturdav, February 27, 1836

Bonham leaves for Goliad and Gonzales. The Mexican Army causes many night alarms, giving Texans very little sleep. The Mexicans try to cut off water supply to north.

Sixth Day, Sunday, February 28, 1836

Fannin starts for the Alamo and then returns to Goliad. Mexicans cannonade ail day. Crockett with fiddle, Mc Gregor with bagpipes, stace musical to cheer Texans. Drizzles.

Seventh Day, Monday, February, 29, 1836 Mexicans move earthworms closer. Santa Anna reconnoiters troops. The 32 men. leave Gonzales for the Alamo.

Eighth Day, Tuesday, March 1, 1836

3:00 a.m., Texans elated at arrival of 32 men from Gonzales. Texans fire two 12-pound shots at house Santa Anna is in on Main Plaza; one shot hits the house.

Ninth Day Wednesday, March 2, 1836

Heavy Mexican cannonading continues. Weary men in Alamo unaware Texas Declaration of independence declared at Washington-on-the-brazos.

Tenth Day, Thursday, March 3, 1836

Bonham returns from Gokiad-to report Fannin not coming. John W. Smith sent to Governor Smith with final message from the Alamo.

Eleventh Day, Friday, March 4, 1836

CannoTa-ding starts early and continues all day. Little return fire from the Alamo.

Twelfth Day, Saturday, March 5, 1836

Colonel Travis draws line on ground with sword for ail who will stand and fight with him. Mexican bombardment ends at 1O:00 p.m.

Thirteenth Sunday, March 6, 1836

1:00 a.m. Weary Texans sleep. - Mexican troops move into positions.

2:00 a.m. Santa Anna and Almonte discuss battle plans.

3:00 a.m. Troops still moving into positions.

4:00 a.m. Silence. Troops in position. Just after

5:00 a.m. Santa Anna gives signal. Mexican bugler sounds Dequello. Four columns of Mexican Army advance on Alamo. Twice repelled by Texans. Intense fighting, heavy Mexican casualties. Mexicans breach north wall, pour into plaza barracks, and former church.

6:30 am The Alamo has fallen

6 years ago

The Battle Of The Alamo

Unsheathing his sword during a lull in the virtually incessant bombardment Colonel William Barret Travis drew a line on the ground before his battle-weary men. In a voice trembling with emotion he described the hopelessness of their plight and said, "those prepared to give their lives in freedom's cause, come over to me."

Without hesitation, every man, save one, crossed the line, Colonel James Bowie, stricken with pneumonia, asked that his cot be carried over.

For twelve days now, since February 23, when Travis answered Mexican General Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna's surrender ultimatum with a cannon shot, the defenders had withstood the onslaught of an army which ultimately numbered 4,000 men.

Committed to death inside the Alamo were 189 known patriots who valued freedom more than life itself. Many, such as the 32 men and boys from Gonzales who made their way through the Mexican lines in answer to Travis's plea for reinforcements, were colonists. Theirs was a fight against Santa Anna's intolerable decrees. Others were volunteers such as David Crockett and his "Tennessee Boys" who owned nothing in Texas, and owed nothing to it. Theirs was a fight against tyranny wherever it might be. A handful were native Texans of Spanish and Mexican descent who suffered under the same injustices as the other colonists.

Now with the ammunition and supplies all but exhausted, yet determined to make a Mexican victory more costly than a defeat, those who rallied to the Texas cause awaited the inevitable.

It came suddenly in the chilly, pre-dawn hours of March 6. With bugles sounding the dreaded "Deguello" (no quarter to the defenders) columns of Mexican soldiers attacked from the north, the east, the south and the west. Twice repulsed by withering musket fire and cannon shot, they concentrated their third attack at the battered north wall.

Travis, with a single shot through his forehead, fell across his cannon. The Mexicans swarmed through the breach and into the plaza. At frightful cost they fought their way to the Long Barrack and blasted its massive doors with cannon shot. Its defenders, asking no quarter and receiving none, were put to death with grapeshot, musket fire and bayonets.

Crockett, using his rifle as a club, fell as the attackers, now joined by reinforcements who stormed the south wall, turned to the chapel. The Texans inside soon suffered the fate of their comrades. Bowie, his pistols emptied, his famous knife bloodied, and his body riddled, died on his cot.

Present in the Alamo were Captain Almeron Dickinson's wife, Susanna, and their 15-month-old daughter, Angelina. After the battle, Santa Anna ordered Mrs. Dickingson, her child, and other noncombatants be spared. Other known survivors were Joe, Travis servant; Gertrudis Navarro, 15, sister by adoption to James Bowie's wife, Ursula; Juana Navarro Alsbury, sister of Gertrudis, and her 18-month-old son, Alijo; Gregorio Esparza's wife Ana, and her four children: Enrique, Francisco, Manuel and Maria de Jesus; Trinidad Saucedo and Petra Gonzales. Another survivor was Lewis "Moses" Rose, who by his own choice left the Alamo on the fifth day of March.

Santa Anna, minimizing his losses which numbered nearly 600, said, "It was but a small affair," and ordered the bodies of the heroes burned. Colonel Juan Almonte, noting the great number of casualties, declared, "Another such victory and we are ruined."

The Texans' smoldering desire for freedom, kindled by the funeral pyres of the Alamo, roared into flames three weeks later at Goliad when Santa Anna coldly ordered the massacre of more than 300 prisoners taken at the Battle of Coleto Creek.

On April 21, forty-six days after the fall of the Alamo, less than 800 angered Texans and American volunteers led by General Sam Houston launched a furious attack on the Mexican army of 1,500 at San Jacinto. Shouting "Remember the Alamo! Remember Goliad!", they completely routed the Mexican army in a matter of minutes, killing six hundred and thirty while losing nine. Santa Anna was captured. Texas was free; a new republic was born.

An independent nation for nearly 10 years, Texas was officially annexed to the United States on December 29, 1845. With the change in government, and the lowering of the Texas flag on February 19, 1846, outgoing President Anson Jones declared, "The final act in the great drama is now performed; the Republic of Texas is no more."

6 years ago

The Alamo as it would have appeared in 1836 Texas Shrine to Freedom and Courage The Alamo

The Alamo was already a hundred years old at the time of the siege and battle. It was founded in 1718 as a Spanish mission for the purpose of Christianizing the Indians indigenous to the area. The Indians themselves built the mission under the supervision of the Spanish priests and it was named Mission "San Antonio de Valero." The church was designed without the benefit of a master engineer, the roof collapsed almost immediately, and this portion of the mission was never actually completed.

By 1793, most of the Indians had died from disease and "San Antonio de Valero" was closed as a mission. In 1803, a Spanish cavalry unit from Alamo de Parras, Mexico, was quartered In the mission and it was from this unit that the mission received the name "PuebLo del Alamo." The Spanish word "alamo" means "cottonwood" and may refer to the cottonwood trees that grew along the San Antonio River.

In 1821, Mexico won her independence from Spain and claimed all the land that Spain owned that included Texas. In 1824, Mexico created a democratic constitution based on the United States Constitution. Mexico opened Texas for colonization, offering land very cheaply to new settlers. Many people. both Americans and Europeans, relocated to the area which offered the opportunity for a fresh start. In 1833, a Mexican general, Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna, was elected President of Mexico, but it wasn't long before he turned his presidency into a dictatorship. He began to collect hi-h taxes and passed harsh and unreasonable laws, making the settlers very unhappy with their new home. By 1835. many colonists began to threaten revolt. Alarmed by these threats. Santa Anna sent his brother-@ln-law,. General Martin de Cos, to reinforce the Alamo General Cos arrived in San Antonio. quartered himself and his troops in the Alamo, and converted the old mission into a fortress. He added some 21 cannons which he placed around the walls and began to prepare for a siege and battle. Declaring martial law, he jailed people for no reason and soon the threat of revolution became a reality. Almost two months after Cos' arrival. in December of 1835, a force of 400 Texans led bv Ben Milam made their way into San Antonio and engaged General Cos in battle. After several days of fighting Cos surrendered by raising, a white flag above the Alamo.

The Texan force of 400 suffered 19 casualties while. defeating Mexican forces of l,1OO and gained the most important military stronghold north of the Rio Grande. Leaving his cannons behind, General Cos fled to Mexico promising not to return. The defeat of Cos angered Santa Anna. It became a matter of honor to teach the Texans a lesson and he began to raise an army which he would personally lead to San Antonio.

In the meantime, despite the obvious importance of the Alamo location, Texas Army Commander Sam Houston ordered the Alamo abandoned and destroyed. Feeling that the outpost was far too isolated. he sent Colonel James Bowie with 30 men to carry out his orders. After arriving in San Antonio. somehow Bowie couldn't bring himself to destroy the old mission. Hearing that Santa Anna was marching toward The Alamo. He became even more determined to save the Alamo

7 years ago

Thank you for this thread, it is really informative.



8 years ago
Christopher Columbus
1451 - 1506
Opens the Door to European Invasion of the Americas

A substantial amount of the money used by Queen Isabella to finance the explorations of Columbus came from the seizure and sale of properties owned by Spanish Jews and Muslims. On March 30, 1492, she issued an edict demanding that Jews either convert to Catholicism, leave the country, or be executed.

Quoted from We Were Not the Savages

"The event that led European Nations to destroy many of the civilizations of two continents, and drastically diminish the remainder, resulted from what was an almost impossible accident of fate. If it had not already occurred, it would be virtually impossible to envision.

In 1492, Christopher Columbus, on a sea voyage to chart a shortcut to the Indies, funded by Queen Isabella of Spain, set the stage for the rape of American civilizations by going astray at sea. By chance he eventually landed on a small island in the Caribbean sea populated by a defenseless and friendly pacifist race of people, the Taino. These people were ripe for picking by unscrupulous men, and Columbus and his crew pillaged with impunity. The blind luck that led him to land on this small defenseless island instead of somewhere else along the thousands of miles of North and South American coastline-where people wouldn't have been so complacent-is akin to finding a needle in a haystack.

In retrospect, if he had instead landed in a non-pacifist country, such as that of the Iroquois or Maya, history would have turned out differently. Their Warriors would have fought back ferociously, very probably ending his voyage on the American side of the Atlantic. If this had happened, and no Europeans had appeared for another century, population growth and technology development would have reduced the possibility of European colonization considerably. However, history turned out the way it did and no amount of fantasizing can change that.

Columbus, thinking he was in the Indies, did not waste time paying lip service to the pretence that he was importing "shining" European ideals to the people he mistakenly labelled Indians. Instead he wrote in his journal: "We can send from here, in the name of the Holy Trinity, all the slaves and Brazil wood which could be sold." True to the intent of these words, he initiated the Amerindian slave harvest on his first voyage. When he embarked from the Americas for Spain, it was with a cargo of five hundred Native Americans to be sold on the continental slave markets. Upon landing at Seville, only about three hundred of these unfortunate souls were still alive. These and booty were turned over to Queen Isabella.

The news of the riches offered by Hispaniola and surrounding islands soon spread across Europe. The notion of fabulous wealth for the picking was like a magnet for other European Nations. Within a few years, harvesters from Spain and other European countries were travelling from island to island seeking artifacts, precious metals, spices, and human beings for enslavement. The cruel assault mounted by these people against the defenseless and non-aggressive Taino, who had numbered in the millions in 1492, was so effective that forty years later they were virtually extinct."

8 years ago

The Army expression "Going over The Hill" meaning leaving the army without an authorized pass or going Absent With out Leave (AWOL) came about due to the early setttlers living close to a Cherokee group called "The Over The Hills" ?

8 years ago

Eagle mating ritual

When I was a teenager I heard the sound of two eagles and I looked up and saw them..They were flying very high up over the mountains and were just specks in the sky..I witnessed them lock together and they looked kind of like a helicopter as they spun towards the ground..They were spinning closer and closer to the ground but just yards away from hitting the ground they separated and flew off together over another nearby mountain..

I asked my grandfather what was that all about and he told me the following..He told me eagles mated while flying very high and as they mated they did not fly but locked together and fell toward the ground..He told me this was the way the Creator ensured only the strongest eagles survived because if they did not finish mating while they were locked together in the sky they would both hit the ground and die together..

Eagles mate for life and when one dies the other usually dies within days after the others death..

8 years ago

Friday After Thanksgiving Will Now Be Designated as Day of Tribute

Washington, DC – Earlier this week President Bush signed into

law legislation introduced by Congressman Joe Baca (D-Rialto),

to designate the Friday after Thanksgiving as Native American

Heritage Day. The Native American Heritage Day Bill, H.J. Res.

62, is supported by the National Indian Gaming Association

(NIGA) and 184 federally recognized tribes. It designates Friday,

November 28, 2008, as a day to pay tribute to Native Americans for

their many contributions to the United States.

“I am pleased the President took quick action on signing this

legislation, which recognizes the importance of Native Americans

to our history and culture,” said Rep. Baca. “It is critical we honor

the contributions of Native Americans and ensure all Americans

are properly educated on their heritage and many achievements.”

The Native American Heritage Day Bill encourages Americans

of all backgrounds to observe Friday, November 28, as Native

American Heritage Day, through appropriate ceremonies and

activities. It also encourages public elementary and secondary

schools to enhance student understanding of Native Americans

by providing classroom instruction focusing on their history,

achievements, and contributions. As a state Assemblyman, Rep.

Baca introduced the legislation that established the fourth Friday

of September as Native American Day in California – which

became state law in 1998.

H.J. Res. 62 was originally passed by the House of Representatives

on November 13, 2007. The bill was passed with technical

adjustments by unanimous consent in the U.S. Senate on

September 22, 2008. Then, on September 26, 2008, the House

of Representatives unanimously voted to pass the legislation

again, this time including the adjustments from the Senate. The

legislation was signed into public law by the President on October

8, 2008.

“This law will help to preserve the great history and legacy of

Native Americans,” added Rep. Baca. “Native Americans and

their ancestors have played a vital role in the formation of our

nation. They have fought with valor and died in every American

war dating back to the Revolutionary War, and deserve this special


“Since my time in the California State Legislature, I have fought

to ensure Native Americans receive the recognition they deserve,”

continued Rep. Baca. “After introducing the legislation that

established Native American Day in California, I am proud to have

introduced and passed the legislation that creates a national day of

recognition. I thank my good friend James Ramos, now Chairman

of the San Manuel Band of Mission Indians, for standing with

me from the beginning on this long journey to ensure the

contributions of Native Americans are recognized and appreciated

by all.”

Native American Indian Headdress and Indian War Bonnets
8 years ago

 Designs are different for each Tribe. The Sioux Indian's have a large flair and make a very colorful  Indian Headdress, while the Crow Indian War Bonnets slopp back flatter on the head.

The Blackfoot Indians make an Indian Headdress that is worn straight up from the head. The Sioux Indian, Cheyenne Indian and the Pawnee Indian use only geometric designs in the beaded brow band. Indian

War Bonnets were very practical on the Plains because there were no bushes or trees for them to catch on. Eagle feathers were rewarded to Indian Braves, warriors and Chieftains for extreme acts of valor and bravery and were very difficult to achieve. They were earned one at a time. 

Regardless of the circumstance of how an Indian Brave accumulated feathers, he was not authorized, according to Tribal law, to wear them until he won them by a brave deed. He had to appear before the Tribal council and tell or reenact his exploit. Witnesses were examined and if in the eyes of the council the deed was thought worthy, the brave was then allowed to wear the feathers in his hair or Indian Headdress or in the Indian War bonnets.

Sometimes a tuft of horsehair was added to the tip of a feather to designate additional honor. Coup Feathers (pronounced "coo") of the Native American Indian can be compared to campaign ribbons or medals awarded to our modern soldiers. An Indian would rather part with his horse, tepee or even his wife, than to loose his eagle feathers. To do so would be dishonor in the eyes of the Tribe. Many of the old Native American Indian Chiefs had won enough honors to wear a double-trailed bonnet that dragged the ground. Only the great and important men of the Tribes had the right to wear the doubled-trailed Indian war bonnets.

8 years ago

Why the Blackfoot Indians are called Blackfoot!

The tribe was called Blackfoot from the discoloration of their moccasins from ashes. They also had a habit of dyeing their moccasins black and the dye would color their feet black..

8 years ago

"Who are the Elders ?"by Daniel Crowfeather

It is time for all the pedestals to be torn down, and for each of us to walk the paths we were intended to walk. We must push aside our egos, and listen to the spirits and to the quiet voice of our own hearts. To do any less is to break faith with ourselves, and with the spirits who agreed to help and guide us. Let the true Elders to do the teaching. Let the Healers do the Healing. Let the Seers do the Seeing. Be content that your life, lived as it supposed to be lived, is as important and necessary as that of any other person. Learn, love, and be humble.

All my relations...

If you would like to learn more about the Mi'kmaw culture, please visit Mi'kmaq Spirit

Copyright 2005 Daniel Crowfeather

8 years ago

The Choctaws comprise two American Indian tribes whose origins are in central and eastern Mississippi. Their ancestors lived in fortified villages, raised corn, and hunted deer. They first encountered Europeans when Hernando de Soto led his forces from 1539 to 1541 through the Southeast. In the eighteenth century, they traded food and deerskins to British and French traders in exchange for weapons and cloth. Their major public ceremonies were funerals, but otherwise Choctaw religious beliefs were matters of private dreams or visions. They traced descent through the mother's line. The Choctaws settled conflicts between towns or with neighboring tribes on the stickball field, where each team tried to hit a ball of deerskin beyond the other's goal. The game was violent, but its outcome kept peace within the nation. During the American Revolution the Choctaws remained neutral, and they rejected the Shawnee leader Tecumseh's effort to form an alliance against the Americans before the War of 1812. In 1826, to assert their national identity and to show that they were adapting to white civilization, they adopted a written constitution that established a representative form of government. Despite the Choctaws' friendship and signs of adopting American customs, President Andrew Jackson pressed all Indians east of the Mississippi to cede their lands and move west. In 1830, Choctaw leaders signed the Treaty of Dancing Rabbit Creek, and approximately fifteen thousand Choctaws moved to what is now Oklahoma. There they reestablished their constitutional form of government and controlled their own school system. They allied with the Confederacy during the Civil War and afterward were forced to sign new treaties with the United States that ceded parts of their land and allowed railroads to cross their territory. Railroads brought non-Indians to Choctaw lands, and in 1907 the tribal government was dissolved when Oklahoma became a state. Mineral resources, however, remained as communal holdings, and the federal government continued to recognize titular chiefs. Political activism in the 1960s led to a resurgence in tribal identity. At the turn of the twenty-first century, the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma had over 127,000 members throughout the United States, and the Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians, descendents of those who resisted removal, numbered over 8,300.

The Doctrine of Discovery
8 years ago

From 1492 forward, European countries and the United States justified their dealings with the natives and American Indian tribes in North and South America under the “doctrine of discovery.”  Under this principle, the European country that first discovered a new area where Christian Europeans had not yet arrived could claim the territory for their own country.  This did not mean that the natives lost the right to live on the land or to farm and hunt animals on it but it did mean that the natives could only sell their land to the one European country that “discovered” them and that they should only deal politically with that one European country.  In most situations, the Europeans also enforced the doctrine of discovery against themselves because they recognized and agreed to be bound by the principle that the discovering country earned a protectible property right in newly discovered territories.  The audacity of one country “discovering” and claiming lands already occupied and owned by American Indians came from the idea that Christians and white Europeans were superior to people of other races and religions.      When European countries first came to the New World, they were not strong enough militarily to just take the land from the Indian tribes.  Thus, they entered treaties with tribes to make the transactions look legal and valid, and they bought the lands they wanted.  In addition, influential scholars in England and Spain, for example, believed that Indians had a legal right as free people to continue to own their lands and that a European country could only take lands by force in an honorable war.

In exercising its control over the American continent, the United States also enforced the doctrine of discovery.  Thus, as the United States Supreme Court stated in 1823, in the case of Johnson v. McIntosh, 21 U.S. (8 Wheat) 543 (1823), the United States acquired the sole right to buy lands from Indian tribal governments under the doctrine of discovery.  Thus, sales of land that Indians had made to persons other than to the United States government were invalid.  Tribes continued to have the right to use and occupy their lands but their governmental sovereign powers were restricted in that they could only sell their lands to the United States.  Johnson, 21 U.S. at 573-74.  The United States gained this power under the doctrine of discovery from England and from other European countries as the U.S. bought or acquired the “discovery” authority of these European countries over various parts of the American continent.

In upholding this power of discovery over Indian tribes for the United States, the Supreme Court had to ignore its own opinion that Indians possessed natural rights to their lands.  In fact, the Supreme Court refused to say why American farmers, “merchants and manufacturers have a right, on abstract principles, to expel hunters from the territory they possess” or to limit the tribal rights.  Instead, in determining tribal rights to sell their lands, the Court relied on the doctrine of discovery and the fact that the United States had beaten some tribes in war to decide that only the United States could buy Indian lands.  “Conquest gives a title [to the land] which the Courts of the conqueror cannot deny . . . .”  Id. at 588.

8 years ago

American Indians are also mentioned in the Constitution of 1789, Article I, and again in the Fourteenth Amendment to the Constitution which was ratified in 1868.  In counting the population of the states to determine how many representatives a state can have in Congress, Indians were expressly not to be counted unless they paid taxes.  In effect, Indians were not considered to be federal or state citizens unless they paid taxes.  After the Civil War when citizenship rights were extended through the Fourteenth Amendment to ex-slaves and to “[a]ll persons born or naturalized in the United States,” that Amendment still excluded individual Indians from citizenship rights and excluded them from being counted towards figuring congressional representation unless they paid taxes.  This demonstrates that Congress still considered Indians to be citizens of other sovereign governments even in 1868 when the Fourteenth Amendment was adopted.  This view was correct because most Indians did not become United States citizens until 1924 when Congress passed a law making all Indians United States citizens.  For many years after 1924, states were still uncertain whether Indians were also citizens of the state where they lived and in many states Indians were not allowed to vote in state elections.

8 years ago

The meaning of the term medicine to an American Indian is quite different from that which is ordinarily held by modern societies.  To most American Indians, medicine signifies an array of ideas and concepts rather than remedies and treatment alone.  There is no separation between religion and medicine in tribal culture and healing ceremonies are an integral part of the community experience.  To the American Indian, the natural or correct state of all things, including man, is harmony.  Far from being dominant over nature, man is seen as interdependent with other living beings and physical forces.  All thinking is grounded in relationships.  More emphasis is given to the connectedness of one thing to another than to the individual thing itself.  To maintain a correct or natural relationship is to be in harmony.  The universe is a complex matrix of interdependence.  There is a proper set of relationships for each being, a proper existing in harmony with the universe.

8 years ago
 North American Indian Medicine

Medical problems in aboriginal times included wounds, sprains, broken bones, burns, and other minor skin ailments. Rheumatism and arthritis affected the old. Smoke-filled lodges caused sore eyes. Dental problems were fairly common. Women had problems with menstruation and childbirth. Intestinal worms were endemic.

"Diseases of civilization" such as heart disease, arteriosclerosis and cancer were rare in aboriginal times. Very few viral or bacterial diseases existed in North America before contact. Epidemic "crowd" diseases such as measles and smallpox did not affect Indians until European contact when these diseases came to the New World.

The North American Indians did not usually regard physical problems as distinct from spiritual problems. Some tribes had herbalists as well as shamans; however, in many tribes the two roles were combined in a single person. Even when a physical remedy was applied, the cause of the ailment might still be scribed to evil spirits. In many respects, Indian medicines in the days after contact were not much different from those in Europe. Early explorers, particularly clergymen, took an interest in simples (herbals) used in the Americas.


8 years ago
Paiute Native American Shaman Wovolka:
The Ghost Dance:

Osiyo my brothers and sisters in this group!

The following is a very informative video about how the spirit of the Native Americans during their hostile take over by the white man scared the US military which lead to the massacre of innocent Lakota Indians.

The Ghost Dance appeared during a time of desperation for the Native American Indian people. The Ghost Dance started when Paiute shaman Jack Wilson or Wovoka had a vision that if our people would dance and sing we Indians would live again. The Ghost Dance spread throughout the land. In Dec. 1890 the military panicked and massacred innocent Lakota Indian people at Wound Knee while they danced. It is one of the worse incidents in United States history. Judy Trejo - Summit Lake (Tommo Agi) and Walker River (Agi) Paiute and Anita Collins - Shoshone and Walker River Paiute speak about Wovoka. The Round Dance was a traditional Great Basin dance that spread across the land in the form of the Ghost Dance, and is now part of many celebrations. Robbie Robertson sings "Ghost Dance".

I am truly ashamed by this part of the white man's history. We must never forget so we can avoid never duplicating such genocide!

8 years ago

The city in Florida named Miami means sweet water in the Seminole language

8 years ago

The "In God We Trust" Rock by teacherholly
"Canesadooharie" was the Native American name given to the Black River. This 111-mile river drains 467 square miles and consists of two major branches that meet in Elyria. Where the east and the west branches form the Black River mainstem, waterfalls celebrate the joining which will carry the water another 16 miles to Lake Erie. Local historian William G. Wickens said, "There's no doubt that it was the Black River that brought the steel mill." The river provided transportation, but the steel industry impacted the river's health.

Twin waterfalls mark the union of the east and west branches of the Black River. Remarkably preserved within the center of a busy city, these waterfalls are perhaps older than Lake Erie itself, as the waterfalls were being sculpted when an ancient forerunner to Lake Erie had its shore just north of where Cascade Park is located today. Like many of Lake Erie's waterfalls, Berea Sandstone forms the basis for creation. This stone was a popular building material because of its durability. If you look closely, you can see waves embedded into the sandstone before the sediments deposited 320 to 345 million years ago turned completely to stone.

Shale cliffs formed when water undercut layers of red-tinted Bedford Shale that lies beneath the sandstone. Older than sandstone, shale is quicker to erode. As the water weakened the shale, layers of rock collapsed, creating dramatic cliffs. Cascade Park is also a place to witness the heavy layer of glacial till that formed following the retreat of the Wisconsin glacier approximately 12,000 years ago. A 50-foot layer of till is exposed, revealing an even more recent glimpse at geological history.

A band of Wyandots were thought to have inhabitated a settlement near this area. In 1754, James Smith encountered the Wyandots and was taken captive. He lived with the tribe for four years until he was exchanged for Indian captives.

The City of Elyria got its start, in part, because of the economic power of the waterfalls. Herman Ely, a Massachusetts native who purchased this land as part of a Western Reserve transaction, established a small settlement in 1816. Eventually a mill produced meal and flour for nearby settlements. A flood destroyed the Red Mill in 1832. Foundation remains can be seen today near the West Falls. Ruins of a hydroelectric plant from the early 1900s can be seen near the East Falls.
8 years ago
According to 2003 United States Census Bureau estimates, a little over one third of the 2,786,652 Native Americans in the United States live in three states: California at 413,382, Arizona at 294,137 and Oklahoma at 279,559.

As of 2000, the largest tribes in the U.S. by population were Navajo, Cherokee, Choctaw, Sioux, Chippewa, Apache, Lumbee, Blackfeet, Iroquois, and Pueblo. In 2000, eight of ten Americans with Native American ancestry were of mixed blood. It is estimated that by 2100 that figure will rise to nine out of ten. In addition, there are a number of tribes that are recognized by individual states, but not by the federal government. The rights and benefits associated with state recognition vary from state to state.
8 years ago

English/Cherokee Dictionary - Cherokee NationCherokee Nation

"They took the whole Cherokee Nation
Put us on this reservation
Took away our ways of life
The tomahawk and the bow and knife

Took away our native tongue
And taught their English to our young
And all the beads we made by hand
Are nowadays made in Japan

Cherokee people, Cherokee tribe
So proud to live, so proud to die

They took the whole Indian Nation
Locked us on this reservation
Though I wear a shirt and tie
I'm still part red man deep inside

Cherokee people, Cherokee tribe
So proud to live, so proud to die

But maybe someday when they've learned
Cherokee Nation will return
Will return...
Will return...
Will return...
Will return."

John D. Loudermilk

9 years ago

American Indians made foot wear for the right and left foot whereas the white more civilized Europen made foot wear that was worn by either foot..Can you imagine wearing the same size and shape shoe on the right or left foot when there is a difference in the size and shape of each foot ? If the wrong shoe is worn on the wrong foot it will cause severe damage to the foot.. The white more civilzed Eropean did not make foot wear for each individual foot until the 18th century..

HMM! Now You Know..

9 years ago

People say you can't have a Powwow without a drum, for it carries the heartbeat of the Indian nation. It is also felt to carry the heartbeat of Mother Earth, and thus calls the spirits and nations together.

The Powwow drum is a large base covered with hide (buffalo, deer, or cow). Forming a circle, eight or more men strike the drum in unison with covered mallets. The men then blend their voices with the beating of the Drum to create the song. The songs are often in the Indian language of the drum members. It is the responsibility of the drum members and especially the lead singer to be able to sing and play whatever kind of song is requested by the master of ceremonies or the arena director for any given event (i.e. flag raising, honoring ceremony, different kinds of dances).

It is said that the drum was brought to the Indian people by a woman, and therefore there is a woman spirit that resides inside the drum. Approriately, it is to be treated with respect and care, and strict behavior is expected of anyone coming in contact with the drum. The drum is often thought to help bring the physical and mental side of a person back in touch with his or her spiritual or heart side. As with many things in the Indian culture, the drum is used to bring balance and rejuvenation to a person through their participation in dancing, singing or listening to the heartbeat.
9 years ago
The Real Founding Fathers of the United States were American Indians named "Hiawatha and Deganwidah."
The United States was an American Indian Idea not a white European concept..The first person recorded to have suggested a union of all the colonies and to propose a federal model for it was the Iroquois Chief Canassatego,speaking at a British-Indian assembly in Pennsylvania in July 1744..He complained the Indians found it hard to deal with so many colonial administrations each with its own policy,procedures and laws..He said it would make life easier for everyone involved if the colonists could form a union which would allow them to speak with one voice..He not only proposed that the colonies unify themselves,but told them how they may do it..He suggested that they do as his people had done and form a union like the League of the Iroquois founded by Hiawatha and Deganwidah sometime between AD 1000 and 1450..
When Thomas Jefferson framed the constitution of the United States he borrowed heavily from the Great Law of the Iroquois and the US Congress with two groups was patterned exactly like the representatives of the various tribes within the Iroquois Confederacy.. Adams,Franklin and Jefferson advocated one person be the head of the united colonies instead of an elected group as the Iroquois Confederacy used..
9 years ago

The popular way of saying goodbye comes from the old Puritanical saying of "God Be With Ye" when someone departed from them..The American Indians living in the area heard the Puritans saying this but to their ears they heard "GOOD BYE" and this phrase became popular among the Indians of the area..When white non puritans heard this they also began using  the phrase and today it is a universal phrase for people to say when they depart from one another....

Did You Know
9 years ago
| Hot!

A German Doctor visited the USA and North America learning various remedies natives used for colds,weakness,arthritis and he came upon a common remedy most Natives used to rid a headache..He saw them use the inner bark of a willow tree and dry it and then pound it into a powder and take it with water..When he had a very bad headache he took some of the powder and his headache ceased..

He took this remedy back to Germany and made some of the powder into tablet form..His Name Was M.L. Bayer and the founder of Bayer Aspirin which is often called the wonder drug of all time because of its many uses.. And NOW YOU KNOW...


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