Portal:Indigenous peoples of the Americas

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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Community of igloos. (Illustration from Charles Francis Hall's Arctic Researches and Life Among the Esquimaux, 1865)

An igloo (Inuit language: iglu, Inuktitut syllabics ᐃᒡᓗ [iɣˈlu] (plural: igluit ᐃᒡᓗᐃᑦ [iɣluˈit]) or snowhouse is a type of shelter built of snow, originally built by the Inuit.

Although igloos are usually associated with all Inuit, they were predominantly constructed by people of Canada's Central Arctic and Greenland's Thule area. Other Inuit people tended to use snow to insulate their houses, which were constructed from whalebone and hides. Snow is used because the air pockets trapped in it make it an insulator. On the outside, temperatures may be as low as −45 °C (−49 °F), but on the inside the temperature may range from −7 °C (19 °F) to 16 °C (61 °F) when warmed by body heat alone.

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Chapito.jpg
Chapito, a Seri shaman from Punta Chueca, Sonora, Mexico. Chapito requested to be photographed pointing toward the mountain caves.
image credit:Tomás Castelazo

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The following are images from various Indigenous peoples of the Americas-related articles on Wikipedia.

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Portrait engraving by Simon de Passe, 1616

Pocahontas (born Matoaka, known as Amonute, and later known as Rebecca Rolfe, c. 1595 – March 1617) was a Virginia Indian notable for her association with the colonial settlement at Jamestown, Virginia. Pocahontas was the daughter of Powhatan, the paramount chief of a network of tributary tribal nations in the Tsenacommacah, encompassing the Tidewater region of Virginia. In a well-known historical anecdote, she is said to have saved the life of an Indian captive, Englishman John Smith, in 1607 by placing her head upon his own when her father raised his war club to execute him.

Pocahontas was captured by the English during Anglo-Indian hostilities in 1613, and held for ransom. During her captivity, she converted to Christianity and took the name Rebecca. When the opportunity arose for her to return to her people, she chose to remain with the English. In April 1614, she married tobacco planter John Rolfe, and in January 1615, bore him a son, Thomas Rolfe. Pocahontas's marriage to Rolfe was the first recorded interracial marriage in North American history.

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Native village of Chipitiere, in the Cultural Zone of Manu National Park, Peru
image credit: Martin St-Amant

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