Edward S. Curtis was an American photographer born in 1868. His specialty was taking pictures of the American West and Native Americans. He had a vision to document as much Native American tradition and culture as he could before their way of life disappeared.
In Native Nations you will learn about Curtis’s life, but also learn about how he became interested in documenting the lives of the people he saw and why he felt it was so important to capture these images. Thank goodness he did! The book includes many of his photographs. These are not re-enactments. These are not models or actors dressed in traditional clothes. These are photographs taken of real people in the actual time period. The images capture what a person would have seen at the time with his or her own eyes. Curtis was a photo-journalist long before anyone thought to use that term. Listed below are more websites and books to help you learn about Native Americans.
To give you a start looking at what their life was like, you can look at some historical artifacts like this cradleboard which is part of the collection of Artifacts at The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis.
Cradleboard – “Native American mothers, aunts, and grandmothers demonstrated their love and hope for infants by creating elaborately decorated cradle covers or cradleboards. They used beads, pain, wood, or tacks to make special carriers for their infants. Mothers carried their babies in the cradleboards, like this one, or strapped it to the side of a horse. It was easy to prop the cradleboard with the infant near a tree or dwelling while the mother performed daily chores. Many elders believed cradleboards “socialized” infants when worn because it brought the child to the eye level of the adults.” More Native American Artifacts at The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis.
Websites, Activities & Printables:
- National Museum of the American Indian
- First Nations: Recommended Reading List
- Eiteljorg Museum of the American Indian & Western Art
- Native American Library Association: Native American Links
- Scholastic: Native American Heritage, Everything You Need
- Crowcanyon.org: Pueblo Indiana History for Kids
- The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis: Native American Artifacts
U.S. History in Context: Native Americans is a database you can use in any IndyPL Library Branch or at home. Login using your IndyPL library card number. It will show you biographies, magazines, videos and more about Native Americans.
NoveList K-8: Stories about Native Americans is a database you can use in any IndyPL Library Branch or at home. Login using your IndyPL library card number. Novelist will show you fiction chapter books and picture books you can read about Native Americans. Click on “Check the Library Catalog” to see if IndyPL has the book.
Use your indyPL Library Card to check out books at any of our locations, or check out e-books and e-audiobooks from home right to your device. Click on a book jacket below to request a book or download it. Need help? Call or ask a Library staff member at any of our locations, text a librarian at 317 333-6877, or leave a comment.
The Miami, Potawatomi, Kickapoo, Mascoutens, Delaware (Lenape), Shawnee were some of the Native Americans that lived in Indiana before settlers came here. One of the most well-known Native Americans from Indiana is the Miami Chief, Little Turtle. The websites and books below will help you learn more about Native Americans who lived in Indiana.
- Native American Tribes of Indiana
- Historical Indians of Indiana
- DNR: Native Americans in Indiana Today
- Conner Prairie – Native Americans in Indiana: Resistance & Removal
- Conner Prairie: Lenape Indian Camp
- Angel Mounds State Historic Site
- Native Greetings of Indiana
- Indiana Native Animal Words