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American Indian Tribes

Civics, History, and Government
Crow Tribe
Crow Tribe

American Indians are also called Native Americans or Indians.

Indians lived in the Americas long before people from Europe arrived.

Scientists believe they may have traveled from Asia and Europe to the Americas by crossing the Bering Strait.

The name Indian was given by Christopher Columbus who thought he had reached East India.

Blackfoot Indians
Blackfoot Indians

Most Indians lived in tribes. A tribe is a group of people who share the same ancestors, customs, beliefs, and leaders.

Some tribes built chiefdoms, cities, and nations; others remained independent.

Tribes lived by gathering food, growing food, fishing, or hunting.

There were several types of Indian homes: tipis or teepees, wigwams or wickiups, and cliff dwellings or caves.

Shoshoni Indians and Teepees
Shoshoni Indians and Teepees

Millions of Indians were killed by European and African diseases and wars with American settlers and other countries.

The disease that killed the most Indians was smallpox.

The arrival of Europeans in the Americas brought about the end of most Indian populations and cultures.

Here is a list of some American Indian tribes:

1. Cherokee
2. Navajo
3. Sioux
4. Pueblo
5. Apache
6. Blackfoot
7. Crow
8. Huron
9. Hopi, and more.


1. November is National American Indian Heritage Month.

2. States with the largest American Indian populations are: California, Oklahoma, Arizona, and New Mexico.

3. An Indian reservation is land that is managed by a Native American tribe. It is overseen by the U.S. Bureau of Indian Affairs. Laws on reservations can be different than the laws in the surrounding areas.

4. There are over 300 Indian reservations in the United States.

5. A little less than half of all American Indians live on reservations.

Quiz Questions

1. Name one American Indian tribe in the United States.

2. Did American Indians live in the Americas before Europeans arrived?

3. Name two ways that Indians got food.

4. What is another way to spell teepee?

5. Did the arrival of Europeans bring about the end of most Indian populations and cultures?

Downloadable Lesson Activities

Civics Test PowerPoint, Citzenship Questions 1-50

Civics Test PowerPoint, Citizenship Questions 51-100