Iroquois facts

After the people who spoke Iroquoian came together as different tribes, which were mostly in what is now central and upstate New York, in the 16th century or earlier they came together in an group known today as the Iroquois Leagueor the "League of Peace and Power". To this day, fifty sachems who represent different clans of the Iroquois meet at the Grand Council [2] near Syracuse, New York.

The Iroquois League has also been called the Iroquois Confederacy.

iroquois facts

Some modern scholars now think the League and the Confederacy are different. The League still exists. The Confederacy broke up after the defeat of the British and allied Iroquois nations in the American Revolutionary War.

iroquois facts

It means that the nations of the League should live together as families in the same longhouse. Symbolically, the Mohawk guarded the eastern door, as they lived in the east closest to the Hudson River. The Seneca guarded the western door of the "tribal longhouse", the land they controlled in New York.

The Onondaga, who lived in the center of Haudenosaunee territory, were keepers of the League's both literal and figurative central flame. The French colonists called the Haudenosaunee by the name of Iroquois. Members of the League speak Iroquoian languages that are very different from those of other Iroquoian speakers.

This suggests that while the different Iroquoian tribes had the same historical and cultural origin, they came apart over a long enough time that their languages became different.

Evidence from archaeology shows that Iroquois ancestors lived in the Finger Lakes region from at least AD.

iroquois facts

The Iroquois League was made before they first met European people. Most archaeologists and anthropologists think that the League was made sometime between about and[10] [11] although some people think it was even earlier.

According to tradition, the League was formed through the efforts of two men, Deganawidasometimes known as the Great Peacemaker, and Hiawatha. They brought a message, called the Great Law of Peace, to the fighting Iroquoian nations.

Once they stopped most of their fighting, the Iroquois fast became one of the strongest forces in 17th- and 18th-century northeastern North America. According to legend, an evil Onondaga chieftain named Tadodaho was the last to be converted to the ways of peace by The Great Peacemaker and Hiawatha.

He became the spiritual leader of the Haudenosaunee. The title Tadodaho is still used for the league's spiritual leader, the fiftieth chief, who sits with the Onondaga in council. He is the only one of the fifty to have been chosen by the entire Haudenosaunee people.

In the s, the Iroquois fought with other tribes for hunting land. This is called the Beaver Wars. The Iroquois hoped that helping the British would also bring favors after the war. The British government made the Royal Proclamation of after the war, which said that white people could not live past the Appalachian Mountainsbut this proclamation was largely ignored by the settlers, and the Iroquois agreed to move this line again at the Treaty of Fort Stanwix inwhere they sold the British all their remaining claim to the lands between the Ohio and Tennessee Rivers.

This was the first major split among the Six Nations. Joseph Louis Cook offered his services to the United States and received a Congressional commission as a Lieutenant Colonel- the highest rank held by any Native American during the war. Daniel Brodhead and General John Sullivan against the Iroquois nations to "not merely overrun, but destroy," the British-Indian alliance.

Iroquois - Words of the World

After the war, the ancient central fireplace of the League was made again at Buffalo Creek. As a reward for their loyalty to the British Crown, they were given a large land grant, now called Brantford, Ontario on the Grand River. Traditionally, the Iroquois were a mix of farmers, fishers, gatherers and hunters, although most of their food came from farming.

Iroquois facts for kids

The main crops they farmed were corn, beans and squash, which were called the three sisters and were considered special gifts from the Creator.The Iroquoian peoples are a group of tribes from the Great Lakes area who speak dialects of the Iroquoian family of Native North American languages and have similar lifestyles. Other Iroquoian peoples include the Huron, Erie, and Wyandotte.

The name was given them either by the Ojibwa or Chippewain which case it means "poisonous snakes," or by the Algonquin, meaning "bad or terrifying man. The Iroquois call themselves Houdenosauneeor "People of the Longhouse. The Owasco were settled agriculturalists and supplemented their diet through hunting and fishing. The Iroquois continued in that tradition well into the 19th century, and even today the basic structure of their life remains the same, though on a much more limited scale.

The Mohawk, Oneida, Onondaga, Seneca, and Cayuga were constantly at war with one another over hunting and fishing grounds, honor and revenge, and, later, trapping grounds for the fur tradein the early part of their history.

Eventually, two men joined together to create the Iroquois Confederacy. An Onondaga named Hiawatha not the same Hiawatha as in Henry Wadsworth Longfellow 's poem began preaching peace among the Iroquois nations but found little support and even active resistance. According to legend, all three of his daughters died of illness or injuries thought to be caused by the evil wishes of his opponents, particularly an Onondaga chief named Thadodaho, who was very powerful and very antagonistic.

In despair, Hiawatha left the Onondagas and wandered to the outskirts of a Mohawk village. There he met Deganawida, who was either a Mohawk or a Huron, and the two of them discovered a great sympathy toward each other.

Together they convinced the Mohawk to be the first nation to join the Iroquois Confederacy. Soon the Oneida agreed to join as well. Hiawatha and Deganawida knew the Confederacy would not succeed without the support of Thadodaho, so they set about persuading him to join. Finally, Thadodaho agreed and the Onondaga became the third nation in the Confederacy.

The Seneca and Cayuga then followed. The Mohawk, as the most eastern tribe, became the Keepers of the Eastern Door; the Seneca, as the westernmost tribe, were designated the Keepers of the Western Door, and the Onondaga, in the center, became the Keepers of the Council Fire.

Every year, the 50 sachems peace chiefs who made up the Great Council of the Confederacy met at the Onondaga council house to discuss and vote on matters of the Confederacy.

Sachems were always men, but they were chosen by the clan matrons, the elder women who headed each clan. Sachems served for life, or until their clan matron decided to remove them from office. Although the five nations each had a different number of sachems on the council, each nation had only one vote.

So the sachems of each nation had to decide together how to use their one vote. In this way, each of the five nations had equal power in the Confederacy. The first European known to have made contact with the Iroquois was the French explorer Jacques Cartierwho encountered the Iroquois in The Iroquois had already begun receiving European goods, such as metal knives and hatchets, guns, glass beads, and wool cloth, in trade with more eastern tribes.

By the 17th century, the Iroquois were trading directly with the French, who were most interested in furs, particularly beaver pelts. The fur trade created tremendous hostilities between the Iroquois Confederacy tribes and their neighbors, especially the Huron.Find Native American ancestors in your family tree.

Iroquois wampum belt. Here is a link to the Haudenosaunee Grand Councilwhere you can find information about the Iroquois Confederacy past and present. Here is the website of the Iroquois Museum of New Yorkwhere you can see photographs of Iroquois art and artifacts.

Sponsored Links How do Iroquois Indian children live, and what did they do in the past? Iroquois dolls. They do the same things any children do--play with each other, go to school and help around the house. Many Iroquois children like to go hunting and fishing with their fathers. In the past, Indian kids had more chores and less time to play, just like colonial children. But Iroquois kids did have cornhusk dollstoys, and games, such as one game where kids tried to throw a dart through a moving hoop.

Lacrosse was also a popular sport among Iroquois boys as it was among adult men. Iroquois mothers, like many Native Americans, had the tradition of carrying their babies in cradleboards on their backs. Here is a website with Iroquois cradleboard pictures. What were men and women's roles in the Iroquois tribe?

Iroquois men were in charge of hunting, trading, and war. Iroquois women were in charge of farming, property, and family. These different roles were reflected in Iroquois government. Iroquois clans were ruled by women, who made all the land and resource decisions for each clan. But the chiefs, who made military decisions and trade agreements, were always men.

Only men represented the Iroquois Confederacy at the Great Council, but only women voted to determine who the representatives of each tribe would be. Both genders took part in Iroquois storytelling, artwork and music, and traditional medicine. What were Iroquois homes like in the past? Iroquois longhouse sketch. The Iroquois people lived in villages of longhouses. A longhouse was a large wood-frame building covered with sheets of elm bark.

Iroquois longhouses were up to a hundred feet long, and each one housed an entire clan as many as 60 people. Here are some pictures of Indian longhouses like the ones Iroquois Indians used, and a drawing of what a longhouse looked like on the inside.

Today, Iroquois families live in modern houses and apartment buildings, just like you.

Iroquois Tribe: Fascinating Facts About Their Food and Clothing

What was Iroquois clothing like? Did Iroquois people wear feather headdresses and face paint? Iroquois men wore breechcloths with long leggings. Iroquois women wore wraparound skirts with shorter leggings. Men did not originally wear shirts in Iroquois culture, but women often wore a tunic called an overdress. Iroquois people also wore moccasins on their feet and heavy robes in winter. In colonial times, the Iroquois adapted European costume like long cloth shirts, decorating them with fancy beadwork and ribbon applique.

Here is a webpage about traditional Iroquois dressand here are some photos and links about American Indian clothes in general. The Iroquois Indians did not wear long headdresses like the Sioux.After the people who spoke Iroquoian came together as different tribes, which were mostly in what is now central and upstate New York, in the 16th century or earlier they came together in an group known today as the Iroquois Leagueor the "League of Peace and Power".

To this day, fifty sachems who represent different clans of the Iroquois meet at the Grand Council near Syracuse, New York. Today, the Iroquois live mostly in New York and Canada. The Iroquois League has also been called the Iroquois Confederacy. Some modern scholars now think the League and the Confederacy are different.

According to this belief, the term "Iroquois League" stands for the ceremonies and culture found in the Grand Council, while the term "Iroquois Confederacy" stands for what was the spread out political and diplomatic group that was made after Europeans began colonizing America.

The League still exists. The Confederacy broke up after the defeat of the British and allied Iroquois nations in the American Revolutionary War. It means that the nations of the League should live together as families in the same longhouse.

Symbolically, the Mohawk guarded the eastern door, as they lived in the east closest to the Hudson River. The Seneca guarded the western door of the "tribal longhouse", the land they controlled in New York. The Onondaga, who lived in the center of Haudenosaunee territory, were keepers of the League's both literal and figurative central flame.

The French colonists called the Haudenosaunee by the name of Iroquois. There are several different places this name might have come from:. Members of the League speak Iroquoian languages that are very different from those of other Iroquoian speakers.

This suggests that while the different Iroquoian tribes had the same historical and cultural origin, they came apart over a long enough time that their languages became different.

Evidence from archaeology shows that Iroquois ancestors lived in the Finger Lakes region from at least AD. After coming together in the League, the Iroquois invaded the Ohio River Valley in present-day Kentucky to find more hunting grounds. The Iroquois League was made before they first met European people. Most archaeologists and anthropologists think that the League was made sometime between about andalthough some people think it was even earlier.

According to tradition, the League was formed through the efforts of two men, Deganawidasometimes known as the Great Peacemaker, and Hiawatha. They brought a message, called the Great Law of Peace, to the fighting Iroquoian nations. Once they stopped most of their fighting, the Iroquois fast became one of the strongest forces in 17th- and 18th-century northeastern North America. According to legend, an evil Onondaga chieftain named Tadodaho was the last to be converted to the ways of peace by The Great Peacemaker and Hiawatha.

He became the spiritual leader of the Haudenosaunee. The title Tadodaho is still used for the league's spiritual leader, the fiftieth chief, who sits with the Onondaga in council. He is the only one of the fifty to have been chosen by the entire Haudenosaunee people.

In the s, the Iroquois fought with other tribes for hunting land. This is called the Beaver Wars. The Iroquois hoped that helping the British would also bring favors after the war.

The British government made the Royal Proclamation of after the war, which said that white people could not live past the Appalachian Mountainsbut this proclamation was largely ignored by the settlers, and the Iroquois agreed to move this line again at the Treaty of Fort Stanwix inwhere they sold the British all their remaining claim to the lands between the Ohio and Tennessee Rivers.

This was the first major split among the Six Nations. Joseph Louis Cook offered his services to the United States and received a Congressional commission as a Lieutenant Colonel- the highest rank held by any Native American during the war.

However, after a series of successful operations against frontier settlements — led by the Mohawk war chief Joseph Brant, other war chiefs, and British allies — the future United States wanted revenge.Cayugas a kind of Iroquois drove the Allegans away and took it over. The Iroquois traded in canoes north up the Hudson River to the St.

They bought copper that came from Lake Superior. In return, they sold rare seashellsdried fishand tobacco.

iroquois facts

So the Iroquois traded with people across all of North America. The Iroquois started to fight a lot of wars around this time. They built their villages on high ground and surrounded them with strong log walls. At some point around the s AD, the Iroquois formed a confederacy con-FED-ur-ah-seewhich is a sort of club or organization. This was an agreement between the different groups of Iroquois — the Mohawk, the Oneida, the Cayuga, the Seneca, and the Onandaigua — to get along and fight as allies against their enemies, instead of fighting each other.

It was super hard to make wampum. So Iroquois people used wampum to mark very important occasions like marriages, or treaties. But wampum was also a kind of moneybecause it was rare and hard to get, like gold. Written — very lively and with a lot of good detail about daily life. I really liked it. The Iroquoisby Barbara Graymont More detailed information. I would like to know how the longhouse evolved. Yes, a lot of people would like to know that!

Those are areas where archaeologists still have a lot of work to do. Karen, Hello, my name is Edward I have been working on Haudenosaunee studies for many years. As contact with White culture had impacted many things, did it also impact and change the farming methods used is unclear. Hi Edward, Wow, that is a hard question, but a good one.

I think that of course contact with Europeans must have changed Haudenosaunee farming methods, for instance by providing the Haudenosaunee with iron shovels and scythes, when before they only had wooden ones.Cemented mainly by their desire to stand together against invasion, the tribes united in a common council composed of clan and village chiefs; each tribe had one vote, and unanimity was required for decisions.

Under the Great Law of Peace Gayanesshagowathe joint jurisdiction of 50 peace chiefs, known as sachems, or hodiyahnehsonhembraced all civil affairs at the intertribal level. The Iroquois Haudenosaunee Confederacy differed from other American Indian confederacies in the northeastern woodlands primarily in being better organized, more consciously defined, and more effective. The Iroquois used elaborately ritualized systems for choosing leaders and making important decisions.

They persuaded colonial governments to use these rituals in their joint negotiations, and they fostered a tradition of political sagacity based on ceremonial sanction rather than on the occasional outstanding individual leader.

Because the league lacked administrative control, the nations did not always act in unison, but spectacular successes in warfare compensated for this and were possible because of security at home. During the formative period of the confederacy aboutthe Five Nations remained concentrated in what is now central and upper New York state, barely holding their own with the neighbouring Huron and Mohican Mahicanwho were supplied with guns through their trade with the Dutch.

Byhowever, the Mohawk had emerged from their secluded woodlands to defeat the Mohican and lay the Hudson River valley tribes and New England tribes under tribute for goods and wampum. The Mohawk traded beaver pelts to the English and Dutch in exchange for firearms, and the resulting depletion of local beaver populations drove the confederacy members to wage war against far-flung tribal enemies in order to procure more supplies of beaver.

In the years from tothe confederacy turned west and dispersed the Huron, TionontatiNeutraland Erie tribes. The Andaste succumbed to the confederacy inand then various eastern Siouan allies of the Andaste were attacked.

By the s most of the tribes of the Piedmont had been subdued, incorporated, or destroyed by the league. The Iroquois also came into conflict with the French in the later 17th century. The French were allies of their enemies, the Algonquins and Hurons, and after the Iroquois had destroyed the Huron confederacy in —50, they launched devastating raids on New France for the next decade and a half.

They were then temporarily checked by successive French expeditions against them in andbut, after the latter attack, led by the marquis de Denonville, the Iroquois once again carried the fight into the heart of French territory, wiping out Lachinenear Montrealin For a century and a quarter before the American Revolutionthe Iroquois stood athwart the path from Albany to the Great Lakeskeeping the route from permanent settlement by the French and containing the Dutch and the English.

In the 18th century the Six Nations remained consistent and bitter enemies of the French, who were allied with their traditional foes. The Iroquois became dependent on the British in Albany for European goods which were cheaper there than in Montrealand thus Albany was never attacked.

During the American Revolution, a schism developed among the Iroquois. The fields, orchards, and granaries, as well as the morale, of the Iroquois were destroyed in when U.Aroundfive tribes -- the Mohawks, the Oneidas, the Onondagas, the Cayugas, and the Senecas -- banded together to form a confederacy.

A sixth tribe, the Tuscaroras, joined in These people called themselves "Haudenosaunee" or "people of the long house". The name "Iroquois" is a French variant on a term for "snake" given these people by the Hurons.

Iroquois Facts

There were other tribes who spoke a similar language, but who were not part of the confederacy. For example, the Erie natives were related to the Iroquois. The Iroquois Confederacy considered them enemies and wiped out the entire tribe. They conquered and drove out various groups of Native Americans living in the area. The resulting wars were known as the Beaver Wars A.

The Iroquois participated in the fur trade with the Dutch and then with the English. Unlike many other tribes east of the Mississippi River, the Iroquois generally did not favor the French over the English. A small group of Mohawks and Onondagas converted to Catholicism and aided the French, but most of the Iroquois assisted the English against the French.

During the American Revolution, many of the British-allied Iroquois joined with the British against the American colonists. A small number of the Iroquois lived in modern-day Ohio. Probably only several hundred Iroquois resided in Ohio at any one time. They came there primarily to hunt. Some Iroquois who remained in Ohio developed their own political system and separated themselves entirely from the Iroquois living in the East. Toggle navigation. Jump to: navigationsearch. Hurt, R. Richter, Daniel K.

Portrait of Ahyouwaighs, chief of the Six Nations, a confederacy of Iroquois tribes.


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