Christopher Columbus discovered America. But how could he have discovered some place where people were already living? At any rate, Americans celebrate Columbus' arrival as a holiday, but they forget the indigenous people. These are people that helped our ancestors live here when the first settlers were having troubles adapting to an environment in which they did not know how to exploit the resources. But the repayment for such selfless aid is sub-par by anyone's standards. Nowadays it's hard to picture how the Native Americans used to live because meeting one is a rarity.
The Native Americans once occupied the entire region of the United States. They were composed of many different groups, with as many as a few hundred languages and dialects. The Natives from the Southwest used to live in large built terraced communities and their main way of finding food was from agriculture; they planted squash, pumpkins, beans and corn crops. Trades between neighboring tribes were common, and this act brought in additional goods and also some raw materials such as gems, cooper, seashells and soapstone. To this day, movies and television continue the stereotype of Natives wearing feathered headdresses and killing innocent white settlers.
As they encountered the Europeans, their material world completely changed. The Native Americans were amazed by the physical looks of the white settlers, their way of dressing, and also by their language. The first Native-White encounter was very peaceful and trade was their principal interaction. Tension and disputes were sometimes resolved by force but more often by negotiation or treaties. On the other hand, the Natives were described as strong and very innocent creatures waiting for th...
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Once thought to be vanishing, the Native Americans are to the contrary still a part of our world. The Native voices grow strong and this Museum serves as a stage to present the diversity and vitality of those voices. By visiting the Museum of the American Native, my knowledge has increased enormously about this topic. I found out things about the Natives that I didn't know. The Native Americans can finally say thanks for the things the U.S. Government in its efforts to keep the Native American culture among our history for all these years.
Egan, Timothy. "Seeking Land for Tribe of Girl Who Helped Lewis and Clark," New York Times, October 26, 1999.
Poteete, Troy Wayne. "Trail of Tears Advisory Council." Cherokee Nation. May 31, 1992.
Richards, Dorothy Fay. "Pocahontas, Child Princess." NJ: Prentice, 1978.
Milwaukee Public MuseumNative Americans
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