Native American

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Native American tribes inhabited the Americas for centuries before European explorers claim to have discovered the “New World”. Believed to have migrated east on the Bering Strait, these tribes spread throughout North and South America, establishing distinct cultures with rich traditions and customs. When Europeans arrived at the turn of the fifteenth-century, disease and advanced weaponry ravaged the native tribes. Colonists soon arrived and began to establish settlements that grew into towns and cities, further encroaching on Native American lands. Soon, Native Americans were pushed off of their lands by the Bureau of Indian Affairs and the Indian Removal Act. They headed west, though white encroachment continued to threaten them. Often, they had their homes, lands, and cultures stripped from them in misguided efforts to “civilize” and educate them. Many Native Americans were lost to disease and violence over the centuries of European settlement in the Americas, and many more saw their beloved traditions, languages, and customs trampled beneath the feet of colonizers and expansionists. Today, the American Indian Movement strives to revive tribal traditions, languages, and spirituality.

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Fold3, Native American (/collection/native-american : accessed January 24, 2021), database and images,

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