Native American Territories in the Northeastern Forestlands at the time of Contact

Native American Homelands EB

Political boundaries are fluid over time.  Unlike a river or a mountain range, they are merely human constructs.  This is an important truth that children should learn.

This map will help students understand where (in general) the people of several major Native American nations were living some four hundred years ago when Europeans first began visiting this area with increasing frequency.   Youngsters will see that quite a few different Native American cultures were coexisting in this part of the Northeastern Forestlands – before the epidemics and tragic wars that would follow soon after.   Fortunately, many descendants of the Native Americans continue to live in this region (some keenly aware of their ancestry; others not).

This map can be used in many ways.  For example, it exercises students’ capacity to decipher texts describing spatial position, it builds their knowledge about the names of important First Nations in Pre-Colonial times, and it can serve as a prompt for discussions about the primacy of Native American claims / rights to the NE forestlands and waters.  Further research is encouraged to help children develop a more informed understanding of the complexities of this region’s history.

Here’s the PDF of the map:  Native American Homelands EB