Paper on The History, Lifestyle and Culture of Indians in Eastern America

The Indians are believed to be native tribe that occupied Eastern American before the arrival of the Europeans. The period these tribes occupied the region was further subdivided into three main periods, namely; Woodland period, Archaic period and Paleo-Indian period. These tribes are believed to have migrated from Asia at around 500 B.C. The paper explores the lifestyle, history and culture of natives American from the prior European era all the way to the 21st century.

The early tribes that live in the eastern part of Mississippi were hunters and gathers as a result of the availability of many wild animals and indigenous plants. Agriculture was also practiced by these tribes. Corn was regarded as a stable food, however they grew other food such as beans, potatoes and tomatoes. Research shows that small scale farming practiced by the American Indian started at around 1000 B.C (Kehoe 7). Apart from sourcing their food from the land they also did fishing.

Political system of the tribes on the eastern part of the Mississippi began  just before the Europeans arrived in the region. The political system of governance was headed by a chief who controlled an area known as a chiefdom. Chiefs were also in charge in leading religions ceremonies and rituals during planting and harvesting seasons. The green corn ritual was an example of a celebrated event that marked the ripening of corn. Chiefs were also in charge in overseeing that the environment was conserved to ensure that there was a supply of foodstuff every year. Historians suggest that after the formation of political systems that led to rise of conflicts among the chiefdoms.

European Explorers arrived in America after 1500s. It is in this period little was known about the continent. Tremendous changes took place when these Europeans namely: the English, French and Spanish made contact with the natives. These explorers brought with them smallpox and flu eventually infecting the indigenous people who had no immunity. As a result, many people were infected and died leading to some extinction of some tribes.The new trade between the Europeans and the natives brought a positive impact on the everyday lives of the natives. For instance, they were able to use new products and materials to hunt and carry out agriculture. They did away with the use of bow and arrows and incorporated use of firearms. The Europeans brought rum, which led to numerous problems in some tribes.

Finally, European traders introduced slave trade in the region. They was a great demand of workers to clear fields and help in building of houses. It was at this point that the natives realized that they could benefit greatly from this trade. Therefore, they exchanged prisoners who were captured in tribal wars with good such as weapons and tools from the Europeans. As the trade grew so did the inter-tribal conflicts intensified due to the high demand for slaves.

In the twenty first century, most indigenous people still practice their religion beliefs that they shared several centuries ago. However, they have resolved their cultural differences as the conflicts that used to happen are something of the past. Some natives have moved into the cities, others are still in the reserves while others have remained in their native lands. Despite many communities having relocated the new world, they are still respected as natives Americans. As natives, they have economically benefited from some government projects. For instance state universities in Arizona are giving preferences when admitting female American Indian students.

 

Work Cited

Kehoe, Alice Beck. North America Before The European Invasions. United Kingdom: Taylor & Francis, 2016. Print.