The native peoples of North America, sometimes referred to as American Indians or First Nations.

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Why weren't North American Indians enslaved?

When White men came to mainland North America, there were an indigenous population already here. I will refer to that population as North American Indians. Africans were brought to the Americas ...
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What region(s) of the country supported President Madison's reelection during the War of 1812? [on hold]

A) West and South for religious and social reasons B) West and South because he was for the war C) Northeast because he was against the war D) Northeast for economic reasons
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When is it okay to use the word “Indian” when meaning “Native American?” [closed]

It has always been a personal pet peeve of mine when Native Americans are referred to as "Indians." It has nothing to do with respect for Native Americans or political correctness; it is entirely ...
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Who were the Deer Touchers?

About 20 years ago I read an article in a periodical (can't remember which periodical) about a tribe of natives (I believe they were North American) who had a tradition of touching live deer. They ...
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Did native Mexicans prefer Spanish rulers to the Aztecs?

In his letter to Charles V, Hernan Cortes states that "it was only necessary to threaten to return them [the natives] to their native masters in order to make them serve the Spaniards very willingly." ...
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Why did Native Americans die from European diseases while Europeans didn't catch serious diseases from the New World?

Why did Native Americans die of European diseases while Europeans didn't have serious diseases from the New World? I read that most Native American victims of colonization in the new world died of ...
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Historical drivers behind demographics of Indigenous populations in American countries [duplicate]

Today I run into this picture (shown below) that shows what seems to be a stark difference in the percentage of indigenous populations in Spanish speaking countries vs other countries in the Americas ...
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Before the Land Bridge Theory, how was human presence in the Americas explained?

The Land Bridge Theory argues that humans crossed over to Alaska from Siberia, via a land bridge created by glaciation. The theory developed in the 1930s and became the popularly accepted explanation ...
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What did Native Americans know, or speculate, about the Old world?

When Columbus "discovered" the New World, the Old World had little to no knowledge of it. What little was known was perhaps Greenland, and - based on accurate knowledge of the size of the world - a ...
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Why does Latin America has a higher number of surviving Native Americans than North America?

Despite having the same disease susceptibility and technological inferiority against the Europeans, it seems that Native Americans have much more surviving descendants in Latin America compared to ...
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Was the concept of religious freedom in the early United States applied to native American faiths?

When the nascent United States was drafting and adopting its supreme laws, some references to religions were made. For example, in the Bill of Rights: Congress shall make no law respecting an ...
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How did Europeans really conquer the Americas? [closed]

In school we (US centric students) were taught that the european settlers won over the Native Americans due to our superior technology (aka guns) and the native american's susceptibility to our ...
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How did native Americans and European colonists conduct their trades?

I'm curious to know how Natives Americans and Europeans colonists traded during the colonization of north-east America. what kind of currencies (if any) were used? Or did they barter?
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What type of defenses did the Pequot use at their fort?

During the Pequot War (1634-1638), the Pequot built a fort near modern Mystic, Connecticut. This fort was overrun by the English settlers in 1637 who massacred most of the inhabitants. What type of ...
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How did people dress at the Jesuit missions to the Hurons?

The Jesuits established a number of missions among the Huron people of what is today Ontario during the 1600s. Unlike many other proselytizing groups of that era, the Jesuits were known for ...
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How much did Native Americans steal from the Pilgrims? [closed]

In Of Plymouth Plantation, William Bradford mentions one instance of Native Americans stealing Pilgrims' tools while they were eating dinner. The tools were later returned after negotiating with ...
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What was the estimated population of the Mississippi Valley before contact with European?

According to Jared Diamond's Guns, Germs and Steel (p. 211), the Mississippi Valley used to contain populous Indian societies: When we in the United States think of the most populous New World ...
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Did the Assiniboine live around Fort Assiniboine (Canada)?

There's a place in Alberta called Fort Assiniboine. Today it's a small village, but in the days of the fur trade, it was a fort and trading post for the Hudson's Bay Company. The Assiniboine people ...
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Which native groups were hostile to the fur trade in North America?

From c. 1600-1830, there was a major fur trade going on in North America. Which native groups were hostile to the fur trade? I've read that the Iroquois were seen as dangerous by the fur traders, ...
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Where were they ecoshapping and were condemned by the UN

I remember an article from some time in the past about an american/canadian indian tribe which sank an iron rich ship in their lake or inlet to the ocean in order to increase the amount of fish. I ...
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Did syphilis, polio, hepatitis, and encephalitis come to general world from the Americas?

This site asserts that syphilis, polio, hepatitis, and encephalitis come to general world from the Americas but I am unable to prove that statement could someone confirm or deny it?
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Why didn't Native (North) Americans ever advance their civilization?

I was taught that the Native Americans (both North, then South) primarily came down from Canada from what is now Russia. Whether or not that is true, why did the Native American civilizations from the ...
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Is this accusation in the Declaration of Independence factual?

In the Declaration of Independence, one of the "Wrongs of King George" is: He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeavoured to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers, the ...
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Explaining differences in settler-first peoples mating

There was fairly little mixing between European settlers and the first peoples in what is today USA and Canada. There was extensive mixing in what is today Mexico (modern day: 65% Mestizo, 17.5% ...
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How many acres per person were needed for the early American settlers vs. the native Americans?

Clearly the lifestyle of the native peoples of North America was less intensive than that of the European settlers and thus required more land per person. However, theirs was not exclusively a ...
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How are historical epidemiological studies done?

While growing up we were told in school that plagues, carried over by the Europeans, decimated the Native American population. We were also taught about the black plague in Europe and a few other ...
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Why did Ancient Pueblo peoples build their homes in cliffs?

The Ancient Pueblo peoples are known for their cliff dwellings found throughout the American Southwest, in places like Mesa Verde, Bandelier, Montezuma Castle, and the Gila Cliff Dwellings. Why did ...
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Why did no Independent American Indian states ever develop?

The Jewish people, who had no state of their own for close to two thousand years, re-created one in the 20th century. How come no native American states have formed? Is there something preventing it? ...
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Did the US government officially apologize for Indian Removal Act and Native American Indian genocide?

Have the US government officially apologized for Indian Removal Act and Native American Indian genocide? If yes, could you provide more information when did it happen and who (which president or ...
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Why did the Native American city of Cahokia die out?

From AD 600-1400, the Mississippian native Americans had a massive city near the present site of St. Louis, MO. It was one of the world's largest cities at the time, and was the largest pre-Columbian ...
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Why Californian Indian leader Estanislao was named after Polish martyr?

Researching for Polish people dealing with Indians during 19th century, I've found out about Estanislao, one of Yokuts' leaders, who led different groups of Californian Indian rebels against Mexican ...
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Early instances of bacteriological warfare

Via The Straight Dope, I came across this page which claims that Lord Jeffrey Amherst, commander-in-chief of the Brits in America seriously considered distributing blankets infected with small-pox to ...
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Did Native Americans ever fight the indigenous people living in Mexico before Europeans arrived?

From elementary school, my history teacher used to talk about the fighting between native American tribes. Then, later in the semester, we would briefly discuss the rise of Aztecs, Olmecs, Mayans, ...
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Why did civilisation/city states never take root in Australia and North America?

I recently read that the Australian Aborigines numbered close to a million during the time of Botany Bay and comprised of ~250 tribes/nations. The Native Americans of North America also boasted ...
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Did the US gov't pay the Cherokee for their lands in Georgia?

According to the Treaty of New Echota, ratified by the US Senate in 1836, the US government was supposed to pay the Cherokee Nation $5 million for their lands in and around Georgia. In exchange, the ...
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Did non-Indians go into Indian Territory (now Oklahoma)?

From 1854 to 1907 there was a territory reserved for American Indians (aptly named "Indian Territory") in what is now the state of Oklahoma. How exclusive was this territory? Did non-Indians go ...
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Did American Indians disrupt railroads in their regions?

In the Old West, many railroads went through Indian-occupied areas. Are there any documented instances of the Indians ever sabotaging the railroads? Please provide dates and circumstances where ...
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Did Native Americans sabotage telegraph lines running through their territory?

In the 1800s in the Western US, there were a number of telegraph lines running through territory mostly inhabited by Indians. Did they ever sabotage the lines?
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New World Sickness

When Europeans came to the Americas, they brought with them "Old World diseases" that decimated the Native American population. There's a big list of them here. Were there any "New World" diseases ...
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Where can one study the movements of the natives of North America prior to European contact

I was curious to know what is currently the best source (or the best sources) for information about people indigenous to the Americas prior to European contact. I am especially interested in the area ...
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To what extent did Native American cultures develop metalworking for tools and weapons?

When Europeans started showing up in the New World, the native cultures were technologically far behind. Many still used stone tools: North American tribes used flint, while some Mesoamerican cultures ...
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What Land Runs were there in the U.S., and were the Indians paid for their land?

In 1893, the U.S. paid the Cherokees $8.5 million for the Cherokee Strip or Outlet for the land run that year. Were Indians paid for land in the other Oklahoma land runs? Were there land runs in ...
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Why is Christopher Columbus credited for “discovering” America?

Even if we ignore the millions of native Americans who lived in the continent before Columbus "discovered" it, even if we ignore other civilizations (eg: Polynesians, Phoenicians, Chinese, Arabs, ...
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What historical evidence do we have regarding the Lost Colony of Roanoke?

In grade school, Americans are told a very basic story of Roanoke colony. A group of colonists arrive in the New World and establish the colony. The first American of English descent is born there: ...
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How is it that King Philips War devastated the colonists so much, but the Colonists were not driven out?

King Philips War, or Metacom's War if you will, was pretty devastating to the Northeast Colonies in the pre-United States - yet even after this the tribes that could have realized that the English and ...
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What are the factors that caused the new world civilizations to be less technologically advanced than the old world?

Assuming they started at the same point (maybe the split of the continents or the migration of the first "Native Americans" to the American continent), why did the Old World end up developing faster? ...