In “Women’s Lives Among the Delaware”, Heckewelder explains the Indian marriage to be a Male dominated one, much like that of the colonial family. Throughout the passage the main idea that was conveyed was that women, the Indian women along the Delaware, pulled their own weight as far as duties for their homes are concerned. They would “cheerfully” go out and do farm work, which included tilling the land and eventually harvesting the crops. Mothers would teach their daughters to do these duties at a young age as well. Women also looked over their kettles, and fetched and cut the firewood to be used. Other duties were included as well (quilting, husking…), which were called frolics in the document. All in all, Heckewelder wanted to stress the point to say that the women didn’t have too tough of jobs, in comparison to the men of the Indian tribes (the hunters).
The second document, “Iroquois Women in Government”, presented the special case of women having prominent roles in government within the Huron Indian tribes. Charlevoix stated that among these Iroquois-speaking Indians, the role of chief was inherited through the female line. When it comes time to name the counselors of the Huron nations, the women would choose, and more than likely it would be someone of their own sex. However, they did choose male counselors/chiefs as well. These Huron Indian women would also have an orator, or someone that speaks for them and represents them. The orator... [continues]
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