Great Plains

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THE GREAT PLAINS

The Great Plains Native Americans were indigenous people who live in the center of North America. They covered states from the Rocky Mountains to the Mississippi River and cover some provinces in Canada to Texas. The Great Plains Native Americans were separated into two groups called the Plain Indians and Prairie Indians. The Great Plains Native Americans were rich with culture, wore traditional clothing, and made their own tools.

Some of the Great Plains Native Americans were nomads. Being nomadic means they moved around often. The nomadic tribes included the Blackfoot, Crow, Plains Apache, Omaha, and Iowa. These tribes followed the seasonal grazing and migration of buffalo. The tribes came together annually to have the Sun Dance. The Sun Dance is the most important ceremony for them. The scattered tribes gathered in large groups, and the leaders made political decisions, planned movements, resolved problems, and organized expeditions.

Since most of the Great Plains Native Americans were nomadic, so their homes had to be easily disassembled. They needed easy to disassemble homes so they could move when the animal herds move. They lived in tipis and tee-pees, which are made of wooden poles and animal skins. Their clothing was also made from animal skins. The animal skins were sewn together by threads made from deer. Men wore breech cloths and buckskin tunics decorated with beads. Women and girls wore long buckskin dresses with beads. Boys wore nothing until the age of ten. In the winter time, they lived in more stable homes called earth lodges. Earth lodges kept them warm in the winter. They added animal skin leggings to their clothing in the winter so they would not be cold.

Hunting and gathering were the main sources of food for the Great Plains Native Americans. They used every part of the animals they killed. The bones were used to make weapons. They used knives, spears, bows and arrows, clubs, and firearms to hunt. They...