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25 November 2006

THE ALGONQUIANS


Algonquian Area Map Showing Early Areas of Occupation from Virginia through Nova Scotia  on the Atlantic Coast
(From Algonquians of the East Coast, a Time- Life Book, highly recommend reading)

From time-to-time we are asked about other Algonquian language based tribes -- our linguistic cousins. Consequently, in the future we will have  sketches of those tribes on this page. We will also provide links to more comprehensive coverage of each tribe. When available, we will use the data that the individual tribes provide provides to describe themselves. Much of the data used herein is the result of the careful research of many people, to who we are indebted. We encourage readers to use the links to those sites in order that you can enjoy the rich amount of Algonquian culture contained therein.    

Some Algonquian Moons

JANUARY SQUOCHEE KESOS SUN HAS NOT STRENGTH TO THAW
FEBRUARY APICUUMMILCUM ICE IN RIVER IS GONE
MARCH NAMOSSACK KESOS CATCHING FISH
APRIL SUQUANNI KESOS WHEN THEY SET INDIAN CORN
MAY MOONESQUANIMOCK KESOS WHEN WOMEN WEED CORN
JUNE TWOWA KESOS WHEN THEY HILL INDIAN CORN
JULY MATTERLLAWAW KESOS SQUASH ARE RIPE & INDIAN BEANS BEGIN TO BE EDIBLE
AUGUST MICHEENEE KESOS WHEN INDIAN CORN IS EDIBLE
SEPTEMBER POHQUITAQUNK KESOS MIDDLE BETWEEN HARVEST AND EATING INDIAN CORN
OCTOBER PEPEWARR WHITE FROST ON GRASS AND GROUND
NOVEMBER QUINNE KESOS SAME AS PEPEWARR
DECEMBER PAPSAPQUOHO  

 

ABENAKI
Some Abenaki Moons

JANUARY          Alamikos       Greetings Maker Moon    
FEBRUARY        Pia˘dagos      Makes Branches Fall In Pieces Moon    
MARCH             Mozokas        Moose Hunter Moon    
MID-MARCH    Sigwankas      Spring Season Maker Moon    
APRIL                Sogalikas        Sugar Maker Moon    
MAY                  Kikas               Field Maker Moon    
JUNE                 Nokahigas       Hoer Moon    
JULY                 Temaskikos      Grass Cutter Moon    
AUGUST          Temez˘was      Cutter Moon    
SEPTEMBER     Skamonkas      Corn Maker Moon    
OCTOBER         Penibagos        Leaf Falling Moon    
NOVEMBER     Mzatanos        Freezing River maker Moon    
DECEMBER      Pebonkas        Winter Maker Moon    

CANOY (PISCATAWAY)


The Conoy or Piscataway Indians were closely related to the Delaware and Nanticoke tribes.  They originally inhabited the Piscataway Creek in Southern Maryland but were forced to move to the Potomac region because of constant attacks by the Susquehannocks. In 1701, they attended a treaty signing with William Penn and moved into Pennsylvania under the protection of the Iroquois nation, becoming members of the "Covenant Chain."
The Covenant Chain was a trade and military alliance between the Iroquois and the non-Iroquoian speaking tribes conquered by the former. The conquered tribes had no vote or direct representation in the Iroquoian Council and all relations with the Europeans were handled by the Iroquois. In return the Iroquois agreed to protect the members from intertribal warfare. The Canoy settled along the southern Susquehanna River in a region once occupied by the Susquehannock. Once in Pennsylvania, they continued to spread northward and established a town in 1718 at the mouth of the Conoy Creek.  The tribe continued to move and finally settled on an island at the mouth of the Juniata River.
    The culture of the Conoy or Piscataway Indians was said to resemble that of the Powhatan Indians of Virginia.  They lived in communal houses which consisted of oval wigwams of poles, covered with mats or bark.  The women of the tribe made pottery and baskets, while the men made dug-out canoes and carried the bows and arrows.  They grew corn, pumpkins, and tobacco.  Their dress consisted of a breech cloth for the men and a short deerskin apron for the women.   The Piscataway were known for their kind, unwarlike disposition and were remembered as being very tall and muscular. (From the Pennsylvania Department of State Internet Site.)

MUNSEE

More than 250 years have passed since the last Lenape (also called Delaware) relinquished their traditional homeland and migrated to the west or north. Bark lodges crumbled, dugout canoes rotted, wooden mortars and pestles decayed; only an occasional stone arrowhead or pottery fragment marks the places where these people once lived.    The Lenape way of life has been faithfully recreated on an island called "Winakung" (meaning "Place of Sassafras") in Historic Waterloo Village. Here there are no teepees, no feathered war bonnets, no fringed buckskins or other trappings reminiscent of the TV Indians, who are usually associated with the Great Plains or the Southwest. Instead, Winakung is a life-sized Minisink Indian Village carefully built on actual archaeological evidence and scholarly research.    The Minisink were the people who inhabited Northeastern  New Jersey, including what is now Historic Waterloo Village. Like the Raritan, Hackensack, Sickonese and other groups, they were part of a larger Lenape "nation" comprising the people who were indigenous to New Jersey and the adjacent parts of Eastern Pennsylvania, Southeastern New York and Northern Delaware.    Located in a natural and scenic setting, an earthen trail leading to the island is dotted with bark wigwams, a native garden, and a grove replete with symbols from a local Lenape petroglyph. After crossing the bridge to the "Indian Island" the visitor is transported into the Lenape world as it might have been in 1625, when European traders were visiting Indian communities to barter metal pots, iron axes, scissors, cloth, glass beads and other items for the Indians' furs and skins. Indeed, one bark longhouse measuring 60 feet by 20 feet and completely furnished with benches, fireplaces and other paraphernalia replicates a trading scene.


Replica of a Munsee Longhouse


Another longhouse created of saplings and bark is 40 feet long and 20 feet wide. Like the first, it is furnished with deerskin-covered bunks and shelves holding baskets, pots and pelts. Firewood is conveniently stored under the bunks. Countless braided ears of corn hang from the domed roof. A longhouse was occupied by a number of families related through the same female line. Smaller bark or sedge-covered round houses were used by single families. Several examples are located throughout the island.    Two years in the making, Winakung has been visited and approved by descendants of the Lenape Indians now living in Oklahoma and Canada. It is the finest and most authentic Indian Village reconstruction in the Northeast. (From the Village of Waterloo Web Site)

   
   
                                                    
                   MUNSEE DELAWARE

Munsee is an Algonquian language closely related to American Lenape-Delaware, but is considered by most linguists a distinct language. Only a handful of elders still speak Munsee in Ontario. Near cousins of the Lenni Lenape, the Munsee Delaware live primarily in Ontario. There are 2,000 Munsee there, and another 1,500 people in the mixed Stockbridge-Munsee reservation in Wisconsin.
(Native Languages of the Americas: Amerind Language Foundation

NANTICOKE

nanticoke.jpg (20650 bytes)
 Nanticoke Man

In 1772, the Nanticoke, or "tidewater people" began their trek northward to escape the violence caused by the British colonists. They stopped for a time on the Susquehanna River by the mouth of the Juniata, but by 1748 a greater part of the tribe continued north. They settled along the northern Susquehanna River and in Southern New York. Later they joined the Iroquois as members of the "Covenant Chain" and moved to Ohio with the    Delaware tribe. The Nanticoke were distinguished from other tribes by their darker skin color and devotion to fishing and trapping as a main source of food.  They were known as excellent farmers, hunters, and gatherers.  Most of their food was provided through agricultural means.  The women and children planted and tended their gardens, while the men hunted and fished.  The Nanticokes believed in a variety of spirits and felt that things in nature such as water, earth, fire, and trees all possessed a unique spirit.   They were rumored to have been skilled at witchcraft and had an extensive knowledge of poisons. They also transported the bones of their dead with the tribe. (From the Pennsylvania Department of State Internet Site:
 

Shawnee (Shawano, Savannah)
(From Native American Technology and Art)

Originally from the Ohio-Pennsylvania area, the Shawnee were driven out first by the Iroquois and then by the United States government, who forced them to first to Kansas and then to Oklahoma. Some 14,000 Shawnee currently live in Oklahoma. The Algonquian language is spoken by about 200 people in Oklahoma. Another Shawnee tribe is in Kansas.

So live your life that the fear of death can never enter your heart. Trouble no one about their religion; respect others in their view, and demand that they respect yours. Love your life, perfect your life, beautify all things in your life. Seek to make your life long and its purpose in the service of your people. Prepare a noble death song for the day when you go over the great divide. Always give a word or a sign of salute when meeting or passing a friend, even a stranger, when in a lonely place. Show respect to all people and grovel to none. When you arise in the morning give thanks for the food and for the joy of living. If you see no reason for giving thanks, the fault lies only in yourself. Abuse no one and no thing, for abuse turns the wise ones to fools and robs the spirit of its vision. When it comes your time to die, be not like those whose hearts are filled with the fear of death, so that when their time comes they weep and pray for a little more time to live their lives over again in a different way. Sing your death song and die like a hero going home. (Shawnee Chief  Tecumseh)

Before the 1800s, Shawnee men wear a leather breechclout  with a short flap worn only in the front, knee leggings which were gartered below the knee and fringed on the sides. In cooler leather they wore robes and mantles made of lightweight deerskin. Their winter robes were made of bear or buffalo hides. Hides were often worn of animals with the claws attached over the shoulder. They shaved the front of the heads and wore one or two feathers attached to the hair in back. The men wore sashes which were wrapped around the waist and the head. They were often crisscrossed across the chest. Their medicine bags and pouches were of the Prairie tribe style. They also wore leather belts. Important person carried fans. They had numerous necklaces of shells,  beads, native copper and hair pipes. They pierced their ears. Their earlobes were often distended to the shoulders by attached weights. They wore ear wheels, huge hopes, and rings in the holes. They worn nose rings. The men tattooed fine red lines on their faces or painted the lines on. Other colors were used, but red was the most common. After the 1800s, the Shawnee men adopted European dress with the exception of ear ornaments and face painting. Their leggings were often trimmed with ribbon work. (From the very informative site, "Detailed discussion of Shawnee, Sauk, and Potawatomi basic dress, regalia, and hair style."
 

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This Page was last proofread on 19 February 2004. Copy 5 November 2004. Times New Roman 14 point (TH)