Against the Winds: American Indian Running Traditions
Harvard University’s Peabody Museum here presents a virtual exhibit on the Native American traditions of running. At first thought one may not assume running to be a very culturally enlightening subject, but this website proves otherwise. Drawing heavily from Peter Nabokov’s book Indian Running: Native American History and Tradition, this exhibit explains and traces the tradition of running from pre-Columbian times to the present.
American Native Press Archives
American Native Press Archives is devoted to the preservation and dissemination of the written words of Native peoples…It stands today as one of the world’s largest repositories of Native thought.”
This collection of Native American resources is maintained and hosted by the University of Arkansas at Little Rock. Much of the website is dedicated to the contents of the Archives and will not be of much use to the casual browser. However, the digital library, or Native Writers Digital Text Project is very useful. It contains various pieces of Native American literature that give a unique view on historical events. The most valuable resource on the site is the information on the Trail of Tears. The texts in this section contain a wealth of information, primary documents and even related images of this tragic event. (BR)
American Originals, Part 2: Treaty of 1868, April 29, 1868
American Originals, Part 2: Treaty of 1868, April 29, 1868 is a webpage concerning a very specific topic. As this is the case there is not a lot of information present; the page consists of approximately two paragraphs worth of information. The information on this site pertains primarily to the treaty signed between the American Government and the Sioux Indians in the year 1868, and traces events of the area of the Black Hills up to 1877 following the discovery of gold. With such close geographical ties to the Lakota Sioux, this page offers valuable local history for the classroom.
Camping with the Sioux: Fieldwork Diary of Alice Cunningham Fletcher
“Although they contain scant ethnographic information, Fletcher’s writings provide an important insight into the attitudes of many white scientists and administrators in the late nineteenth century with regard to what they termed ‘the Indian Question.’"
The information on this website concerns Alice Cunningham Fletcher and her ethnographic work among the Sioux. Educated in the best Bostonian preparatory schools, she gained some repute as a lecturer before her western travels. Her interest in the Siouan peoples eventually lead Fletcher to live among the tribes in order to study their culture. Digital reproductions of her diary, photographs, and a collection of oral literature recorded by Fletcher are included.
CryptologyNavajo Code Talkers in World War II
“Guadalcanal, Tarawa, Peleliu, Iwo Jima: the Navajo code talkers took part in every assault the U.S. Marines conducted in the Pacific from 1942 to 1945. They served in all six Marine divisions, Marine Raider battalions and Marine parachute units, transmitting messages by telephone and radio in their native language -- a code that the Japanese never broke.”
CryptologyNavajo Code Talkers in World War II describes the role of Navajo code talkers during World War II and contains a dictionary of the codes used. The material was prepared by the Navy & Marine Corps WWII Commemorative Committee. Although the narrative gives a very general overview of the code talkers’ actions, contributions, and troubles during the war, browsers interested in either Navajo history/language or military codes and code breaking should find the dictionary of special interest.
Explore National American Indian Heritage Month
“The National Register of Historic Places is pleased to promote awareness of and appreciation for the history and culture of American Indians and Alaska Natives during National American Indian Heritage Month. This month is dedicated to recognizing the intertribal cultures, the events and lifeways, the designs and achievements of American Indians and Alaska Natives.”
This is another series of thematic lesson plans provided by Teaching with Historical Places, a project of the National Park Services. Explore National American Indian Heritage Month uses historical sites of Native American villages and battles to examine their cultures and histories. These lesson plans specifically focus on the Battle of Honey Springs, the Battle of Horseshoe Bend, the Battle of Oriskany, Pueblo, Hidatsa, and Mandan cultures, histories and sites, Lewis and Clark, and the Spanish mission-presidio system. The lesson plans include a clear, coherent outline accompanied by images, readings, and review questions.
Indians and the American Revolution: By Wilcomb E. Washburn
Indians and the American Revolution, by Wilcomb E. Washburn, is a webpage that provides an annotated text of a presentation given in Riverside, California. Wilcomb E. Washburn received his Ph.D. from Harvard in 1955 in the area of American Civilization, and at the time of the presentation was Director of American Studies at the Smithsonian Institute. The presentation text is a good source of information concerning the involvement of Native American peoples during the Revolutionary War, providing a look into an area of influence in the war often overlooked.
Indian Center, Inc.
“The Indian Center, Inc.'s mission is to provide information, services, and resources to empower our community.…”
With its mission to “promote cultural awareness” of Native Americans, the Indian Center, Inc. website offers visitors information pertaining to many Great Plains Indian tribes. Through the brief tribal histories of the Ho-Chunk, the Omaha, the Ponca, and the Santee Sioux one is able to get a better overall picture of the general history of the Great Plain’s American Indian. Also located on this site are pictures of the culture center and individual tribes, information pertaining to upcoming events such as pow-wows, and general contact information.
Indian Pueblo Cultural Center
“Dedicated to the preservation and perpetuation of Pueblo Indian Culture, History and Art. The Indian Pueblo Cultural Center is your Gateway to the 19 Pueblos of New Mexico. Committed to educating all generations of visitors.”
At this site, browsers will discover information about the nineteen pueblo communities of New Mexico. Each pueblo has a brief summary of its history located under the “19 Pueblos” tab. These summaries offer information about the history, culture, and present experiences of the communities. For those interested in visiting the pueblos, the narratives also give advice on proper tourist etiquette, dates when the community can be accessed, and announcements on whether or not the pueblo is a closed community. Finally, the site has images of modern pueblo art. The pieces are creations of professional, pueblo artists, and definitely worth examining.
Kiowa Drawings in the National Anthropological Archives
“The Smithsonian’s collections of Kiowa drawings include works of art on buffalo hide and more recent examples on paper, a medium that Kiowa artists adopted after it became widely available in the late nineteenth century. Together, these drawings offer a unique source of information on tribal social and artistic traditions.”
Provided by the National Anthropological Archives, Kiowa Drawings in the National Anthropological Archives offers browsers a chance to peruse the beautiful art of the Kiowa tribe. The on-line collection includes selections drawn by the Fort Marion artists, Silver Horse, Spencer Asah, Jack Hokeah, Stephen Mopope, Monroe Tsatake, and Lois Smokey. Accompanying text places these drawings in a historical context for the viewer, while digital images reveal the rich, colorful pictures.
Legal Information Institute (LII)Title 25Indians
The material contained on this site includes the text and reproduction of United States codes pertaining to Native American tribes. The information covers subjects ranging from Indian child welfare to the irrigation of Indian lands. Overall, this is a great website for Native American Legal History. While the material is accessible, teachers may need to help younger high school students use the resources for research projects.
Legends of Our TimeNative Ranching and Rodeo Life on the Plains and Plateau
“Legends of Our Times: Native Ranching and Rodeo Life on the Plains traces the history of Native people as buffalo hunters, horsemen, ranchers, and cowboys, and as entertainers and participants in the sport of rodeo.”
Dedicated to Native American involvement with bison, horses, and ranching, this site describes Native Americans’ attempts to preserve portions of their cultures. Although this site was designed to highlight a museum exhibition, browsers can examine objects used in native ranching. Also, image captions explain the objects. Overall, this is a good sight for a quick glimpse into this subject.
The Menominee Indian Tribe of Wisconsin
“The Menominee Tribe's history is unique because our origin or creation begins at the mouth of the Menominee River, a mere 60 miles east of our present Menominee Indian Reservation. This is where our five clans: ancestral Bear, Eagle, Wolf, Moose, and Crane were created. Not many tribes in this region can attest to the fact their origin place exists close or near to their present reservation. This is where our history begins.”
The Menominee tribe offers on-line visitors the opportunity to explore their rich culture and modern political system. A detailed historical narrative recounts the story of the Menominee people from their cultural perspective. Also, the website creators provide an environmental history of the region and its people. They include such factors as epidemics and geological formations. Definitely worth the visit!
National Indian Law Library
“The National Indian Law Library is a non-profit public library supported by individual contributions. The library provides free reference and research services to the public and strives to deliver information to its clients in the most cost-effective manner.”
Associated with the Native American Rights Fund (NARF), the National Indian Law Library (NILL) website contains information on tribal constitutions and policies, as well as any recent U. S. Supreme Court cases that may affect tribal sovereignty. Browsers can retrieve this information in the form of a summary, or in some cases, actual transcriptions of the Supreme Court decision or tribal constitution. In addition to information contained on the website, the NILL provides visitors with links to other helpful sites.
National Museum of the American Indian
“Native people are profoundly connected to their origins, the places they come from. These places are the source of community identity and cultural continuity.”
National Museum of the American Indian, maintained by the Smithsonian Museum is a good source of information pertaining to the subject of the indigenous peoples of the Americas. Located on this site one can find information in the form of online exhibits such as “Legends of Our Times: Native Ranching and Rodeo Life on the Plains and the Plateau,” where one can find many pictures of Native Americans past and present. Also located on this site is a section titled “Education and Programs” which has a resource center complete with lesson plans written from the Native American perspective, links that provide access to other Native American sites and information, and links for teachers to other resource centers. While this site is a good source of information, it does use Flash technology making it slow to load.
National Park Monument: Navajo National Park, Arizona
“The Dineh, or "The People," as the Navajo call themselves, migrated to the Southwest from the North around the 15th century. They were first noticed by other peoples between the 14th and 15th century, between the Champa and upper San Juan rivers. The Spaniards brought sheep and horses which the Navajo adapted to their nomadic lifestyle.”
The Navajo National Park, Arizona, website contains information regarding the park and the Navajo people. The site designers included some pictures of pottery, paintings, and archaeological sites, and the National Park Service text is very general. However, there is one distinguishing characteristic that makes this website attractive to those studying the Navajo culture. The “History & Culture” tab takes the visitor to an on-line book entitled, Navajo National Monument: A Place and Its People. While it is a work intended to highlight the history of the National Monument, the author, Hal K. Rothman, gives the reader information regarding Navajo history and culture. Moreover, this material does not stop with the close of the nineteenth-century. It includes information regarding the Navajo involvement with the monument, the tribe during the Great Depression, and a narrative of Navajo involvement in state politics and Native American organizations following the Civil Rights Movement. It is well documented and worth the visitor’s time to read
Native American Documents Project
“This project was begun in 1992 by Prof. E.A. Schwartz to develop methods for making documents of federal Indian policy history accessible by computer. The first documents used, now in the Rogue River War and Siletz Reservation collection, were originally gathered for dissertation research.”
For teachers, students, and scholars looking for primary documents, this is a wonderful source! Native American Documents Project has digital images of the reports of the Commissioner of Indian Affairs, principally from the 1870s. It also includes sources about the Dawes Allotment Act, including accompanying charts, tables, and narratives about allotment and its effects on Native Americans. The narrative about the Rogue River War is well documented and very helpful for people uninformed of the event. Finally, teachers searching for maps of reservations in the West will be very pleased with this site. The researchers for Native American Documents Project include a colored, detailed map of the reservations located west of the Mississippi River.
Native American Rhymes
“The books in the Native American Rhymes series, which I firmly believe makes a great first introduction, describes the social, cultural and geographical elements that are essential… to understand and appreciate the history of our very first Americans…”
The Native American Rhymes website covers the histories of nine geographical areas; the Far North, Pacific Northwest Coast, Desert Southwest, Plains, Sub Arctic, California, Great Plateau and Great Basin, and the Northeast and Southeast Woodlands. Admittedly, this site’s main purpose is to promote the author’s (Sam Rhodes) series of books concerning Native Americans. There are many benefits to this site nonetheless, including sections on the Great Chiefs and Native American Regions. As an additional feature, there is a section titled Native American Fun where the visitor can find a collection of games and puzzles for use in the classroom.
The Navajo Times Online
Students studying the modern tribes of the Southwest will find this site helpful. The stories contain up-to-date information about events affecting the Navajo. Political, national, state, and local issues often appear in the stories, as well as features about daily activities and community members. Browsers rarely encounter advertisements, and annoying pop-up ads are nonexistent. Navigation is easy, and the junior high and high school students should not have difficulties with the content. Overall, this is an excellent site for school projects and information about modern Navajo issues.
Omaha Public Library Omaha People
“The Omaha originally had its settlements along Missouri river in eastern Nebraska…”
For the most part this can be viewed as a webpage rather than a much larger website. This page offers a brief history of the Omaha People from 1780 on in the form of textual information. There are a couple of photographs on this page, but neither is of any exceptional quality for overheads, etc. As the website states, “The Omaha lived under the protection of the powerful Pawnee, who claimed the whole Platte region. Since they have occupied a subordinate position, they have never been prominent in tribal history…” As is the case, information on this tribe is relatively limited, making the information on this page even more important as a historical source.
Pueblo of Sandia Home Page
“The Sandia people are members of the pre-Columbian Tiwa language group who once dominated the Albuquerque area and our lineage can be traced back to the Aztec civilization who later migrated to the New Mexico region. The present site has been our home, where we have cultivated the land and raised our families, since at least 1300 AD.”
The Sandia Pueblo site provides information regarding their history and culture as well as current issues. The segment on the Sandia Mountain settlement gives researchers valuable primary sources and a general history of this prolonged court battle for Sandia Pueblo rights to 10,000 acres of land ceded to them by the Spanish. For those interested in environmental history, the web designers have a section that discusses modern efforts to promote a healthy and stable environment.
Sioux Nation Tribes
“… I will try to give you an overall view of the Sioux Nation so at least if you are looking for a branch of the tribe you will know what area to locate…”
Sioux Nation Tribes, a website put together by a private citizen and hosted on America Online, is a good source for information pertaining to the Great Plains’ Lakota Indian Tribe. The information on this site not only gives background information concerning this group of people, but also a breakdown of the structure of the tribe. While there are no pictures on this site, the information from this site used with other teaching aids would serve to better bring the Lakota culture to the classroom.
Smithsonian Arctic Studies Center
“The Arctic Studies Center invites you to explore the history of northern peoples, cultures, and environments and the issues that matter to northern residents today. Join us as we excavate arctic sites; support indigenous efforts to preserve cultural heritage; and work with communities and scholars to share the treasures preserved in museum collections and archives.”
Visiting the Arctic Studies Center website, visitors come face-to-face with the history of the North American and Siberian Arctic regions. During this encounter, the visitor explores the rich cultures, histories, wild life, and geography of the region. To enhance this experience, the web site provides a sweeping array of images, videos, and virtual tours. These interactive features make the website especially attractive. By reading extracts from explorers’ and anthropologists’ original documents, readers also have the opportunity to discover the initial reactions of Russian and American colonists to the region and its inhabitants. In addition to European and American experiences within this region, the Arctic Studies Center website offers an insight into the indigenous cultures. On-line displays of various tribal artifacts bring the ancient cultures to life and portray living native peoples in their cultural settings. he exhibition of the Yamal expedition to Siberia is another place of interest. Here, students and teachers can learn about a living indigenous culture that still maintains a traditional way of life. Last, but definitely not least, the website provides an interesting exhibit on the Ainu, thus opening students’ perspectives on indigenous Japanese cultures. Overall, this website provides an enjoyable experience as one lingers in the Arctic.
The Southern Ute Indian Tribe
Created and maintained by the Southern Ute Indian Tribe, this site offers a good introduction to Ute history. The material contained on this website ranges from modern tribal government history to cultural information about the tribe. Their historical narratives provided here offer an account of the tribe since it entered the Southwest until the present. Also, the website creators include information about up-coming events sponsored by the Southern Ute.
Teaching with Documents:
Memorandum Regarding the Enlistment of Navajo Indians
“During World War II, the U.S. Marine Corps, in an effort to find quicker and more secure ways to send and receive code enlisted Navajos as ‘code talkers.’”
This lesson plan offers teachers an activity that instructs students on the role of Navajo soldiers as code talkers during World War II. The activity includes background information, images, primary documents, and group activities. Furthermore, it incorporates modern legislation, issues, and media. The writers recommend using Wind Talkers, starring Nicholas Cage, as a means of visualizing Navajo soldiers’ duties. Overall, students should enjoy this lesson plan. If nothing else, at least the movie should catch their attention!
Welcome to Colorado Ute Legacy
“This web site is sponsored by the Southern Ute Indian Cultural Center.”
This site is sponsored by the Southern Ute Cultural Center located in Ignacio, Colorado (Southern Ute Reservation). It gives information in two forms: timeline and narrative. The material traces the history of the Utes from their entrance in present day Colorado and the surrounding states to the American conquest and removal of the Utes from their traditional tribal lands. Pictures of historic figures and places accompany the text, in addition to pictures of local flora and fauna. Furthermore, the website has questions for classroom discussion. While students can answer these questions by reading the web material, the designer(s) actually intended teachers to ask these questions after the students finished watching a documentary of the Utes (provided by the cultural center for $20.00). Finally, while this material primarily focuses on the Utes, the author(s) include information about American and Mexican/Spanish settlers.
Welcome to the Official Website of the Caddo Nation
“The Caddo emerged from the earth near the confluence of the Red and Mississippi Rivers. It is said that an old man carried fire and a pipe in one hand, and in his other hand a drum. His wife carried seeds of pumpkin and corn, and that all these items were important to the Caddo.”
The Caddo Nation website provides browsers with a general history of the Caddo people as well as contact information and information concerning modern tribal lands. The Caddo tribe holds an important place in Native American History and the History of the U.S. West. Members of this group played a role in regional native trade, and managed to resist assimilation until the 1800s. For students and teachers interested in incorporating Native Americans into their studies, this website serves as a useful tool.
Welcome to the Oneida Indian Nation
“As the first American Indian nation in the United States to establish a World Wide Web site and utilize this innovative technology, our Nation, located in the heart of New York State, is proud to share its People, culture, history, and progress with you.”
Hosted by the Oneida Indian Nation, this website provides viewers with an introduction to past and present issues of the tribe, as well as information on Oneida culture, beliefs, and symbols. The historical background included on the site begins with the tribal creation story and ends with the present movement to restore tribal lands and rebuild an Oneida economy. While relating these efforts to the reader, the authors also explain the tribe’s understanding of sovereignty and the ongoing struggle of addressing treaty grievances. While this website provides reliable information about Oneida history, society, and politics, users should be aware that there are links to the new Turning Stone Casino Resort.