Native American Culture (The Native American Sourcebook) by Kathleen Kuiper

By Kathleen Kuiper

While touch with eu cultures eroded indigenous existence throughout North the USA, many local American teams came across how one can look after the integrity in their groups throughout the arts, customs, languages, and spiritual traditions that animate local American lifestyles. whereas their collective struggles opposed to a standard reason may possibly create the appearance of a shared prior, each one local American neighborhood has a distinct history that displays a novel historical past. the traditional cultural legacies that either distinguish and unite those assorted tribes are the topic of this engrossing quantity.

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Expanding economic opportunities in the north also drew families from southern Canada, and for the first time fairly large numbers of indigenous subarctic peoples and EuroAmericans interacted. By the close of the 20th century, many subarctic peoples had become involved in cultural preservation or revitalization 44 | Native American Culture movements, and a portion of those chose to remain in or relocate to smaller trading-post settlements to foster a more traditional lifestyle. Whether in rural or urban areas, many First Nations peoples and Native Alaskans began to view an intact forest landscape as an intrinsic part of their heritage.

Subsistence, Settlement Patterns, and Housing The traditional Northwest Coast economy was a complex whole. One of its most important distinctions was the highly efficient use of natural resources. Aquatic resources were especially bountiful and included herring, oil-rich candlefish (eulachon), smelt, cod, halibut, mollusks, five species of salmon, and gray whales. 50 | Native American Culture However, the fisheries were scattered across the region and not equally easy to exploit. Certain species of salmon, for example, traveled upriver from the sea to spawn each year, but only in certain rivers and only at particular times of the year.

The northern Coast Range averages an elevation of about 3,300 feet (1,000 m) above sea level, with some peaks and ridges rising to more than 6,600 feet (2,000 m). In most of the Northwest, the land rises steeply from the sea and is cut by a myriad of narrow channels and fjords. The shores of Puget Sound, southwestern Washington, and the Oregon coast hills are lower and less rugged. In general, traditional Northwest Coast economies were oriented toward aquatic resources. The region’s coastal forests—dense and predominantly coniferous, with spruces, Douglas fir, hemlock, red and yellow cedar, and, in the south, coast redwood—supported abundant fauna and a wide variety of wild plant foods.

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