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Thursday, August 26, 2010

Journal #1

Native American history is not the largest topic in the back of my head. Actually, it is quite small, very small, extremely small. There are some things I know like that the Native people were run out of town by new settlers. Apparently, their land was overrun by newcomers, and it forced the natives to move to some new locations. I, however, believe that the people were sort of asking for it. I mean, they hoarded the land for so long, and they should have expected someone to come take over their land because it is, after all, so luscious and fertile and willing to grow sustainable crops such as maize. Maize, by the way, is basically corn. Native Americans grew maize to harvest and feed the family or the village if necessary. Also, it is commonly known that Native Americans lived in teepees, but this is not exactly true. Many people did certainly live in teepees, but most of that living was done during travel since it is such a convenient and easy way of setting up a good shelter. A lot of Native Americans had permanent housing on a "lot," commonly shared with other family members, but there were also some who used teepees as permanent housing. Native Americans from northernmost locations most likely did not use teepees as they would become extremely cold. Instead, the Inuits, for example, came up with a form of shelter involing the surroundings. They cut large blocks of ice and stacked them to create a small dome, then packed the cracks with snow. This system, although sounding totally insane, was actually extremely useful. It provided shelter from the winds of the north, and made a cozy feeling within the people. There was also a ton of hunting back down in the plains. Bear, buffalo, and small game like raccoons, squirrels, rabbits, and birds were hunted for meat, hides, and even bones. They skinned the animal, cleaned it, ate it, then used the remains to form weapons from the bones, like arrow heads, and used the pelts of the animals to make blankets and flooring for their homes.

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