Native American settlement (Crow Nation)

Native American settlement (Crow Nation)

The Crow are Native Americans who inhabited the Yellowstone River valley.



Indian village, Crow tribe, Indians, indigenous people, village, North America, tepee, Homo sapiens, United States of America, tomahawk, America, native, natives, Yellowstone, tribes, tribal lifestyle, tribe, tent, totem, bison, hunting, gathering, settlement, craft, crafts, horsekeeping, shaman, lifestyle, ethnography, history

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  • Which of the following is NOT a Native North-American tribe?
  • Which is NOT a Native American tribe?
  • Which is NOT a Native American tribe?
  • What does the term Iron horse mean?
  • What plant did Crow Indians cultivate primarily?
  • What was not part of an average tipi's furnishings?
  • What is the name of the enclaves where Native Americans have been confined by European settlers?
  • What was a very profitable activity of the first European settlers?
  • Who named Native Americans (mistakenly) Indians?
  • What animals did Crow Indians use to draw their characteristic transport vehicles before the 16th century?
  • What was the term Indians used for European settlers?
  • What was the term settlers used for Indians?
  • What was the term Indians used for alcoholic drinks?
  • Which of the following is a type of Indian pipe?
  • What is a tipi?
  • Which North American animal species was hunted almost to extinction by European settlers?
  • Which is a small but sturdy North American horse?
  • What are Native American tents most similar to\n(in construction)?
  • What did Crow Indians not do?
  • Why did European settlers start taking Native American territories in the Wild West?
  • Which area was called\nthe ´Wild West´?
  • Is it true that many chieftains used spectacular headdresses to show their ranks?
  • Is it true that most of the tipis of Crow Indians were not decorated?
  • What does the word tomahawk mean?
  • What was NOT depicted on Indian totem poles?
  • What were totem poles made of?
  • What material were Native American headdresses typically made of?
  • In which language family does the Crow language belong?
  • What is the name of the Crow Nation in their own language?
  • Near which river was the territory of the Crow Indians situated?
  • What did Native Americans make of the tails of American bison?



Native Americans used to live in tents called tipis. According to ethnographers, the Crow Nation built the highest tipis, some could even reach about 7 metres in height. The framework of the tipis was constructed of wooden poles and covered with American bison hide. These cone-shaped tents were easy to set up and disassemble, which was useful when following migrating herds. The animal hide cover was waterproof and a good heat insulator, making the life of the Crow people more comfortable. The tipi had one entrance and a smoke flap on top.

The outside of most of the Crow Indians' tipis was not decorated. However, those that were painted, featured geometric shapes, and depicted animals and important events like hunts, war, etc.

Inside the tipi, the hearth was located in the centre, with place for sitting and sleeping arranged around the edge. Skins, fur and woven cloths provided comfort for the dwellers. They kept their tools on the tipi's wooden poles or on ropes stretched between them.


Crow settlement

  • plantation - While the Crow people were semisedentary, they cultivated plants. One of their most important plants was tobacco.
  • Sun Dance tent - The Sun Dance was performed at irregular intervals rather than annually. Taking part in this special ceremony was like making a vow.
  • pen - Horses played an important role in the lives of the Crow people.
  • smoker - Smoking is a means of preserving meat.
  • dryer - The skin of the animals was stretched and dried.
  • tipi - The characteristic, cone-shaped tent of nomadic Native Americans.
  • totem pole - A totem is an animal or rarely a plant that is respected by a group of people for religious reason. The totem pole itself is also respected.
  • spinning and weaving - Women used traditional techniques to make decorated cloths.
  • hearth - It was located at the centre of the settlement. It played an important role in the life of the community.
  • canoe - Native Americans used these for water transport.
  • travois - Initially these were drawn by dogs, later by horses.

It is generally held that Homo sapiens arrived in North America about 20,000 years ago. Over the millennia, humans formed groups, which eventually evolved into different tribes and nations.

When Christopher Columbus, the first European explorer to set foot in the New World, arrived in what is today Central America, he believed he was in India and therefore named the inhabitants Indians. Even though he was mistaken, the term is still used today.

The various Indian or Native American tribes all had their unique cultures. Of course, their lifestyle depended on the geographic features of their territories

The Crow Nation was one of the tribes inhabiting North America. The territory of the Crow Nation was located in the Yellowstone River valley in the Northern Great Plains. In their own language, which belongs to the Siouan language family, they call themselves Apsáalooke or Absaroka.


Native American artisans, mostly women, made tools, pots, clothes, etc. for the tribe from the available materials of both plant and animal origin. The craftsmen and women of the Crow Nation produced beautifully decorated and painted cloths.

The common hearth at the centre of the camp with tipis scattered around was not meant for cooking. It was a community place where members of the tribe gathered.

They preserved the meat of the animals they killed for food by smoking, so they didn't go hungry even after an unsuccessful hunt. Animal hides were prepared by first scraping the fat off the skin, then drying it on the sun.

After the appearance of Homo sapiens, horses disappeared from North America. Domesticated horses were introduced again by European colonisers in the 16th century. Mustangs are feral horses descended from these domesticated animals. They were used by Native Americans primarily for hunting and transport.

Plains Indians used a characteristic, triangular, frame-like structure, called travois, for transport. It was made of wooden beams, similar to those used to build tipis. Initially, the travois were drawn by dogs and later by horses.

A totem is a plant, animal or object that is respected by a group of people for religious reasons. Some Native American tribes erected totem poles as well. These carved and painted wooden poles depicted mostly animals carved and painted on them.

The Sun Dance was a traditional ceremony of Native Americans in which the whole community participated. The ceremony was conducted by the medicine-man, a spiritual healer, in the open air or in a special Sun Dance tent.

Uses of the American bison

  • tanned hide - It was used to make moccasin tops, cradles, clothes, belts, toys, tipi covers, pouches etc.
  • rawhide - It was used to make shields, moccasin soles, headdresses, bags, drums, saddles, stirrups etc.
  • brain - It was used for tanning the hide.
  • horns - They were used to make headdresses, cups, spoons etc.
  • skull - It was used for sacred rituals.
  • tongue - It was considered a delicacy.
  • beard - It was used to decorate weapons.
  • hair - It was used to make saddle pad fillings, headdresses, ropes, pillows, headcollars etc.
  • hooves - They were used for making glue and rattles.
  • stomach - It was used to make buckets, cups, containers etc.
  • bones - They were used to make knives, arrowheads, toys, scrapers, shovels, sledges, saddle trees, weapons etc.
  • tail - It was used for making whips, decorations and brushes.
  • muscles - The meat was consumed fresh or dried; tendons were used as bowstrings, arrow ties, etc.
  • fat - It was used in cooking as well as for making soap.
  • manure - It was used as fuel.
  • blood - It was used in rituals and as paint.

The primary food source of the Crow Nation was the American bison. The most common method of the hunt was to chase the frightened animals towards a cliff and drive them off the edge.

However, the bison meant much more than just food for native Americans; they used almost every part of the animal for various purposes.

The American bison once populated the central part of North America, living in large herds. European settlers, however, hunted it relentlessly, pushing the species to the brink of extinction.


Numerous Native American villages dotted the North American continent before the European colonisers arrived. These villages were shaped by the culture of the inhabitants, as well as by the geographical conditions and the climate of the region. For Native Americans living on the prairie, tents were ideal homes. The tents, or tipis, were easy to set up or disassemble when the tribe decided to move on.

The conical framework of the tipi was constructed of wooden poles; animal hides were then stretched around it. Hides were also used to cover the entrance. A family lived in their own tent. In the middle there was a hearth, with a place for the head of the family behind it, facing the entrance. Rugs, animal hides, furs, crates and pots decorated the interior of the tents. Native Americans also kept their weapons and equipment inside the tipis.

Tipis were not arranged within the village according to any particular pattern. The settlements were rarely surrounded by fences, but pens were built for the livestock. The centre of a typical Native American village was the common hearth, which was surrounded by carved totem poles depicting tribal chiefs, spirits or animals. Reverence for the colourful wooden totem poles formed part of the native's religious beliefs.

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