Portal:Indigenous peoples of the Americas

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The Indigenous peoples of the Americas Portal

Current distribution of the Indigenous peoples of the Americas (not including mixed people like mestizos, métis, zambos and pardos)

The Indigenous peoples of the Americas are the inhabitants of the Americas before the arrival of the European settlers in the 15th century, and the ethnic groups who now identify themselves with those peoples.

Many Indigenous peoples of the Americas were traditionally hunter-gatherers and many, especially in the Amazon basin, still are, but many groups practiced aquaculture and agriculture. While some societies depended heavily on agriculture, others practiced a mix of farming, hunting, and gathering. In some regions, the Indigenous peoples created monumental architecture, large-scale organized cities, city-states, chiefdoms, states, kingdoms, republics, confederacies, and empires. Some had varying degrees of knowledge of engineering, architecture, mathematics, astronomy, writing, physics, medicine, planting and irrigation, geology, mining, metallurgy, sculpture, and gold smithing. (Full article...)

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Ohlone villages.png

Ohlone people, also known as the Costanoan, are a Native American people of the central and northern California coast. When Spanish explorers and missionaries arrived in the late 18th century, the Ohlone inhabited the area along the coast from San Francisco Bay through Monterey Bay to the lower Salinas Valley. At that time they spoke a variety of languages, the Ohlone languages, belonging to the Costanoan sub-family of the Utian language family, which itself belongs to the proposed Penutian language phylum. The term "Ohlone" has been used in place of "Costanoan" since the 1970s by some descendant groups and by most ethnographers, historians, and writers of popular literature. In pre-colonial times, the Ohlone lived in more than 50 distinct landholding groups, and did not view themselves as a distinct group. They lived by hunting, fishing, and gathering, in the typical ethnographic California pattern. The members of these various bands interacted freely with one another as they built friendships and marriages, traded tools and other necessities, and partook in cultural practices. The Ohlone people practiced the Kuksu religion. Before the Spanish came, the northern California region was one of the most densely populated regions north of Mexico. However in the years 1769 to 1833, the Spanish missions in California had a devastating effect on Ohlone culture. The Ohlone population declined steeply during this period.

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"Sacagawea" (1910), North Dakota State Capitol, Leonard Crunelle, sculptor.

Sacagawea (/ˌsækəəˈwə/ see below; c. 1788 – December 20, 1812; see here for other theories about her death), also Sakakawea or Sacajawea, was a Lemhi Shoshone woman, who accompanied the Lewis and Clark Expedition, acting as an interpreter and guide, in their exploration of the Western United States. She traveled thousands of miles from North Dakota to the Pacific Ocean between 1804 and 1806.

She has become an important part of the Lewis and Clark legend in the American public imagination. The National American Woman Suffrage Association of the early twentieth century adopted her as a symbol of women's worth and independence, erecting several statues and plaques in her memory, and doing much to spread the story of her accomplishments.

In 2000, the United States Mint issued the Sacagawea dollar coin in her honor, depicting Sacagawea and her son, Jean Baptiste Charbonneau. The face on the coin was modeled on a modern Shoshone-Bannock woman named Randy'L He-dow Teton. No contemporary image of Sacagawea exists.

In 2001, she was given the title of Honorary Sergeant, Regular Army, by then-president Bill Clinton.

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