Classification of indigenous peoples of the Americas

Classification of indigenous peoples of the Americas
Cultural regions of North American people at the time of European contact.
Early indigenous languages in the US
Early indigenous languages in Alaska

Classification of indigenous peoples of the Americas is based upon cultural regions, geography, and linguistics. Anthropologists have named various cultural regions, with fluid boundaries, that are generally agreed upon with some variation. These cultural regions are broadly based upon the locations of indigenous peoples of the Americas from early European and African contact beginning in the late 15th century. When indigenous peoples have been forcibly removed by nation-states, they retain their original geographic classification. Some groups span multiple cultural regions.


Canada, Greenland, United States, and northern Mexico

In the United States and Canada, ethnographers commonly classify indigenous peoples into ten geographical regions with shared cultural traits, called cultural areas.[1] Greenland is part of the Arctic region. Some scholars combine the Plateau and Great Basin regions into the Intermontane West, some separate Prairie peoples from Great Plains peoples, while some separate Great Lakes tribes from the Northeastern Woodlands.


Inuktitut dialect map


Distribution of Cree peoples


Nota bene: The California cultural area does not exactly conform to the state of California's boundaries, and many tribes on the eastern border with Nevada are classified as Great Basin tribes and some tribes on the Oregon border are classified as Plateau tribes.[2]

Northeastern Woodlands

  • Abenaki (Tarrantine), Maine, New Brunswick, New Hampshire, Quebec, and Vermont
    • Eastern Abenaki, Quebec, Maine, and New Hampshire[9]
      • Kennebec (Caniba)
    • Western Abenaki: Quebec, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and Vermont[9]
  • Anishinaabe (Anishinape, Anicinape, Neshnabé, Nishnaabe) (see also Subarctic, Plains)
  • Assateague, Maryland[10]
  • Attawandaron (Neutral), Ontario[9]
  • Beothuk, formerly Newfoundland[9]
  • Choptank people, Maryland[10]
  • Conoy, Virginia[10]
  • Erie, Pennsylvania, New York[9]
  • Etchemin, Maine
  • Meskwaki (Fox), Michigan,[9] later Iowa, Oklahoma
  • Ho-Chunk (Winnebago), Wisconsin near Green Bay, Illinois,[9] later Iowa and Nebraska
  • Honniasont, Pennsylvania, Ohio, West Virginia
  • Hopewell tradition, formerly Ohio and Black River region, 200 BCE—500 CE
  • Illinois Confederacy (Illiniwek), Illinois, Iowa, and Missouri[9]
    • Cahokia, Illinois, Iowa, Missouri, Arkansas, later Oklahoma
    • Kaskaskia, formerly Wisconsin
    • Miami, Illinois, Indiana, and Michigan,[9] later Oklahoma
  • Mitchigamea, formerly Illinois
    • Moingona, formerly Illinois
    • Peoria, Illinois, later Oklahoma
    • Tamaroa, formerly Illinois
    • Wea, formerly Indiana
  • Iroquois Confederacy (Haudenosaunee), Ontario, Quebec, and New York[9]
    • Cayuga, New York,[9] later Oklahoma
    • Mohawk – New York[9] and Kahnawake, Quebec
    • Oneida, New York[9]
    • Onondaga, New York[9]
    • Seneca, New York,[9] later Oklahoma
      • Mingo, Pennsylvania, Ohio, West Virginia
    • Tuscarora, formerly North Carolina
  • Kickapoo, Michigan,[9] Illinois, Missouri, later Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas, Mexico
  • Laurentian (St. Lawrence Iroquoians, formerly New York, Ontario, and Quebec, 14th c.—1580 CE
  • Lenni-Lenape Pennsylvania, Delaware, New Jersey, now Ontario and Oklahoma
    • Munsee linguistic group, (person from Minisink); originally resided in the greater Manhattan area, and drainage of Lower Hudson R. valley and upper Delaware R.
      • Esopus, formerly New York, later Ontario and Wisconsin
        • Waoranecks
        • Warranawankongs
      • Minisink above the Delaware Water Gap
      • Ramapough Mountain Indians, New Jersey
    • Unami linguistic group
      • Acquackanonk, Passaic River in northern New Jersey
      • Hackensack, New Jersey
      • Navasink, to the east along the north shore of New Jersey
      • Raritan, New Jersey, New York
      • Rumachenanck (Haverstraw), New Jersey, New York
      • Tappan, New Jersey, New York
      • Unalachtigo, Delaware, New Jersey
      • Wiechquaeskecks, Connecticut
  • Mascouten, formerly Michigan[9]
  • Massachusett, Massachusetts
    • Ponkapoag, Massachusetts
  • Menominee, Wisconsin[9]
  • Mahican Confederacy, Connecticut, Massachusetts, New York, and Vermont[9]
    • Housatonic, Massachusetts, New York[11]
    • Mahican, Massachusetts, New York, and Vermont[9][11]
    • Wappani (Wappinger), New York[11]
      • Wappinger proper, New York
      • Hammonasset, Connecticut
      • Kitchawank (Kichtawanks, Kichtawank), northern Westchester County, New York
      • Mattabesset, New Haven County, Connecticut
      • Massaco, Farmington River, Connecticut
      • Menunkatuck, coastal Connecticut
      • Nochpeem, Dutchess County, New York
      • Paugusset, along Housatonic River, Connecticut
      • Podunk, eastern Hartford County, Connecticut
      • Poquonock, Hartford County, Connecticut
      • Quinnipiac (Eansketambawg), Connecticut, New Jersey, New York
      • Rechgawawanc (Recgawawanc)
      • Sicaog, Hartford County, Connecticut
      • Sintsink, Westchester County, New York
      • Siwanoy, Connecticut, New York
      • Tankiteke, Connecticut, New York
      • Tunxis, Hartford County, Connecticut
      • Wecquaesgeek, Westchester County, New York
    • Wyachtonok, Connecticut, New York[11]
  • Massachusett, Massachusetts[12]
  • Mi'kmaq (Micmac), New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Labrador, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, Quebec,[9] and Maine
  • Mohegan, Connecticut
  • Montaukett (Montauk), New York
  • Nanticoke, Delaware and Maryland[9]
    • Accohannock
  • Narragansett, Rhode Island
  • Niantic, coastal Connecticut[12]
  • Nipmuc (Nipmuck), Connecticut, Massachusetts, and Rhode Island[12]
  • Occaneechee, Virginia[13]
  • Passamaquoddy, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Quebec, and Maine[9]
  • Patuxent, Maryland[10]
  • Penobscot, Maine
  • Pequot, Connecticut
  • Petun (Tionontate), Ontario[9]
  • Piscataway, Maryland[10]
  • Pocumtuc, western Massachusetts[12]
  • Poospatuck, New York
  • Quinnipiac, Connecticut, eastern New York, northern New Jersey
  • Sauk, Michigan,[9] later Iowa, Oklahoma
  • Schaghticoke, western Connecticut
  • Shawnee, Ohio,[9] West Virginia, Pennsylvania, later Oklahoma
  • Shinnecock, Long Island, New York[12]
  • Susquehannock, Maryland and Pennsylvania[9]
  • Tauxenent (Doeg), Virginia[14]
  • Unquachog, Long Island, New York[12]
  • Wampanoag, Massachusetts
  • Wawenoc, Maine
  • Wenro, New York[9]
  • Wenrohronon, Pennsylvania, New York
  • Wicocomico, Maryland, Virginia
  • Wolastoqiyik, Maliseet, Maine, New Brunswick, Novia Scotia, and Quebec[9]
  • Wyandot (Huron), Ontario south of Georgian Bay, now Oklahoma, Kansas, Michigan, and Wendake, Quebec

Great Basin

  • Ahwahnechee, Yosemite Valley, California
  • Bannock, Idaho[15]
  • Colorado River tribes
    • Chemehuevi, southeastern California
    • Southern Paiute, Arizona, Nevada, Utah
  • Fremont culture (400 CE–1300 CE), formerly Utah[17]
  • Kawaiisu, southern inland California[15]
  • Mono, southeastern California
    • Eastern Mono, southeastern California
    • Western Mono or Owens Valley Paiute, eastern California and Nevada[15]
  • Northern Paiute, eastern California, Nevada, Oregon, southwestern Idaho[15]
    • Kucadikadi, Mono Lake Paiute, Mono Lake, California
  • Shoshone (Shoshoni), California, Idaho, Nevada, Utah, Wyoming
    • Western Shoshone, eastern California, Nevada, north Utah, southeastern Idaho[15]
      • Duckwater Shoshone Tribe or Tsaidüka, Railroad Valley, Nevada[18]
      • Goshute, Nevada and Utah
      • Tonomudza band or Te-Moak Tribe, Nevada
      • Yomba, Nevada
    • Northern Shoshone, Idaho[15]
      • Agaideka (Salmon Eaters) or Lemhi Shoshone, Snake River and Lemhi River Valley, Idaho[19]
      • Kammedeka (Jackrabbit Eaters), Snake River, Idaho to the Great Salt Lake, Utah[19]
      • Pohogwe (People of the Sagebrush Butte) or Fort Hall Shoshone, Idaho[19]
      • Tukudeka (Mountain Sheep Eaters), central Idaho, southern Montana, and Yellowstone, Wyoming
      • Yahandeka (Groundhog Eaters), Boise, Payette, and Weiser Rivers, Idaho[19]
    • Eastern Shoshone, Wyoming[15]
      • Kuccuntikka (Buffalo Eaters)[20]
      • Tukkutikka or Tukudeka (Mountain Sheep Eaters), joined the Northern Shoshone[20]
  • Timbisha or Panamint or Koso, southeastern California
  • Ute, Colorado, Utah, northern New Mexico[15]
    • Capote, southeastern Colorado and New Mexico[21]
    • Moanunts, Salina, Utah[22]
    • Muache, south and central Colorado[21]
    • Pahvant, western Utah[22]
    • Sanpits, central Utah[22]
    • Timpanogots, north central Utah[22]
    • Uintah, Utah[21]
    • Uncompahgre or Taviwach, central and northern Colorado[21]
    • Weeminuche, western Colorado, eastern Utah, northwestern New Mexico[21]
    • White River Utes (Parusanuch and Yampa), Colorado and eastern Utah[21]
  • Washoe, Washo, Nevada and California


Pacific Northwest Coast

  • Ahantchuyuk - see Kalapuya
  • Alsea
  • Applegate
  • Atfalati - see Kalapuya
  • Bella Bella - see Heiltsuk
  • Bella Coola - see Nuxalk
  • Burrard - see Tsleil-waututh
  • Calapooia - see Kalapuya
  • Calapuya - see Kalapuya
  • Central Kalapuya - see Kalapuya
  • Chasta Costa - see Rogue River
  • Chehalis (Upper and Lower) Washington
  • Chehalis (BC), Fraser Valley
  • Chemakum Washington (extinct)
  • Chetco - see Tolowa
  • Chinook Dialects: (Lower Chinook, Upper Chinook, Clackamas, Wasco)
  • Clallam - see Klallam
  • Clatsop
  • Comox Vancouver Island/BC Georgia Strait
  • Coos Hanis} Oregon
  • Lower Coquille (Miluk) Oregon
  • Upper Coquille
  • Cowichan Southern Vancouver Island/Georgia Strait
  • Lower Cowlitz Washington
  • Duwamish Washington
  • Eyak Alaska
  • Galice
  • Gitxsan, British Columbia
  • Haida (Dialects: Kaigani, Skidegate, Masset) BC & Alaska
  • Haisla BC North/Central Coast
    • Haihai
    • Kimsquit
    • Kitimaat
  • Heiltsuk BC Central Coast
  • Hoh Washington
  • Kalapuya (Calapooia, Calapuya)
    • North Kalapuya
      • Yamhill (Yamel)
      • Tualatin
      • Tfalati (Atfalati)
    • Central Kalapuya
    • South Kalapuya (Yonkalla, Yoncalla)
  • Klallam (Clallam, Dialects: Klallam (Lower Elwha), S'Klallam (Jamestown), S'Klallam (Port Gamble))
  • Klickitat
  • Kwalhioqua
  • Kwakwaka'wakw (Kwakiutl)
  • Kwalhioqua
  • Kwatami
  • Lakmiut - see Kalapuya
  • Lower McKenzie - see Kalapuya
  • Lummi Washington
  • Makah Washington
  • Mary's River - see Kalapuya
  • Muckleshoot Washington
  • Musqueam BC Lower Mainland (Vancouver)
  • Nisga'a, British Columbia
  • Nisqually - Washington
  • Nooksack Washington
  • North Kalapuya - see Kalapuya
  • Nisqually Washington
  • Nuu-chah-nulth West Coast of Vancouver Island
  • Nuxalk (Bella Coola) - BC Central Coast
  • Oowekeno - see Wuikinuxv
  • Pentlatch Vancouver Island/Georgia Strait (extinct)
  • Puyallup Washington
  • Quileute Washington
  • Quinault Washington
  • Rivers Inlet - see Wuikinuxv
  • Rogue River or Upper Illinois Oregon, California
  • Saanich Southern Vancouver Island/Georgia Strait
  • Samish Washington
  • Santiam - see Kalapuya
  • Sauk-Suiattle Washington
  • Sechelt BC Sunshine Coast/Georgia Strait (Shishalh)
  • Shoalwater Bay Tribe Washington
  • Siletz Oregon
  • Siuslaw Oregon
  • Skagit
  • Skokomish Washington
  • Skwxwu7mesh (Squamish), British Columbia
  • Sliammon BC Sunshine Coast/Georgia Strait (Mainland Comox)
  • Snohomish
  • Snoqualmie
  • Snuneymuxw (Nanaimo), Vancouver Island
  • Songhees (Songish) Southern Vancouver Island/Strait of Juan de Fuca
  • Sooke Southern Vancouver Island/Strait of Juan de Fuca
  • South Kalapuya - see Kalapuya
  • Squaxin Island Tribe Washington
  • Spokane Washington
  • Stillaguamish Washington
  • Sto:lo, BC Lower Mainland/Fraser Valley
  • Squamish - see Skwxwu7mesh
  • Suquamish Washington
  • Swinomish Washington
  • Tait
  • Takelma Oregon
  • Talio
  • Tfalati - see Kalapuya
  • Tillamook (Nehalem) Oregon
  • Tlatlasikoala
  • Tlingit Alaska
  • Tolowa-Tututni
  • Tsimshian
  • Tsleil-waututh (Burrard) - British Columbia
  • Tualatin - see Kalapuya
  • Tulalip Washington
  • Twana Washington
  • Tzouk-e (Sooke) Vancouver Island
  • Lower Umpqua Oregon
  • Upper Umpqua Oregon
  • Upper Skagit Washington
  • Wuikinuxv (Owekeeno), BC Central Coast
  • Yamel - see Kalapuya
  • Yamhill - see Kalapuya
  • Yaquina
  • Yoncalla - see Kalapuya

Great Plains

Indigenous peoples of the Great Plains are often separated into Northern and Southern Plains tribes.

  • Apache - see also Southwest
    • Lipan Apache, New Mexico, Texas
    • Plains Apache (Kiowa-Apache), Oklahoma
    • Querecho Apache, Texas
  • Arapaho (Arapahoe, Arrapahoe), Colorado, Oklahoma, Wyoming
    • Besawunena
    • Nawathinehena
  • Arikara (Arikaree, Arikari, Ree), North Dakota
  • Atsina (Gros Ventre), Montana
  • Blackfoot
  • Cheyenne, Montana, Oklahoma
    • Suhtai, Montana, Oklahoma
  • Comanche, Oklahoma
  • Plains Cree, Montana
  • Crow (Absaroka, Apsáalooke), Montana
  • Escanjaques, Oklahoma
  • Hidatsa, North Dakota
  • Iowa (Ioway), Kansas, Nebraska, Oklahoma
  • Kaw (Kansa, Kanza), Oklahoma
  • Kiowa, Oklahoma
  • Mandan, North Dakota
  • Missouri (Missouria), Oklahoma
  • Omaha, Nebraska
  • Osage, Oklahoma
  • Otoe (Oto), Oklahoma
  • Pawnee (dialects: South Band, Skiri, Oklahoma
  • Ponca, Nebraska, Oklahoma
  • Quapaw, formerly Arkansas, Oklahoma
  • Sioux
    • Dakota, Minnesota, Montana, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota, Manitoba, Saskatchewan
      • Santee, Nebraska
      • Yankton, South Dakota
      • Yanktonai, formerly Minnesota, currently Montana, North Dakota, and South Dakota
    • Lakota (Teton), Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Saskatchewan
  • Nakoda (Stoney), Alberta
  • Nakota, Assiniboine (Assiniboin), Montana, Saskatchewan
  • Teyas Texas
  • Tonkawa, Oklahoma
  • Tsuu T’ina, (Sarcee, Sarsi, Tsuut’ina), Alberta
  • Wichita and Affiliated Tribes, Oklahoma, formerly Texas and Kansas
    • Kichai, formerly Texas, currently Oklahoma
    • Rayados, Kansas
    • Taovayas
    • Tawakoni, formerly Texas, currently Oklahoma
    • Waco, formerly Texas, currently Oklahoma

Southeastern Woodlands

  • Acolapissa (Colapissa), Louisiana and Mississippi[23]
  • Ais, eastern coastal Florida[24]
  • Alabama, Creek Confederacy, Alabama,[25] southwestern Tennessee, northwestern Mississippi[23][26]
  • Alafay (Alafia, Pojoy, Pohoy, Costas Alafeyes, Alafaya Costas), Florida[27]
  • Amacano, Florida west coast[28]
  • Apalachee, northwestern Florida[26]
  • Apalachicola, Creek Confederacy, Alabama, Florida, Georgia and South Carolina[25]
  • Atakapa (Attacapa), Louisiana west coast and Texas southwestern coast[26]
    • Akokisa, Texas southeast coast[25]
    • Bidai, Texas southeast coast[25]
    • Deadose, eastern Texas
    • Eastern Atakapa, western coastal Louisiana
    • Orcoquiza, southeast Texas
    • Patiri, eastern Texas
    • Tlacopsel, southeast Texas
  • Avoyel ("little Natchez"), Louisiana[23][29]
  • Backhooks Nation (possibly Chuaque, Holpaos, Huaq, Nuaq, Pahoc, Pahor, Paor, Uca),[30] South Carolina
  • Bayogoula, southeastern Louisiana[23][29]
  • Biloxi, Mississippi[23][26]
  • Boca Ratones, Florida
  • Caddo Confederacy, Arkansas, Louisiana, Oklahoma, Texas[26][31]
  • Calusa, southwestern Florida[26][27]
  • Cape Fear Indians, North Carolina southern coast[23]
  • Catawba (Esaw, Usheree, Ushery, Yssa),[30] North Carolina, South Carolina[26]
  • Chacato, Florida panhandle and southern Alabama[23]
  • Chakchiuma, Alabama and Mississippi[26]
  • Chatot people (Chacato, Chactoo), west Florida
  • Chawasha (Washa), Louisiana[23]
  • Cheraw (Chara, Charàh), North Carolina
  • Cherokee, Georgia, North Carolina, western tip of South Carolina, Tennessee, Alabama, later Arkansas, Texas, Mexico, and Oklahoma[32]
  • Chiaha, Creek Confederacy, Alabama[25]
  • Chickanee (Chiquini), North Carolina
  • Chickasaw, Alabama and Mississippi,[26] later Oklahoma[32]
  • Chicora, coastal South Carolina[29]
  • Chine, Florida
  • Chisca (Cisca), southwestern Virginia, northern Florida[29]
  • Chitimacha, Louisiana[26]
  • Choctaw, Mississippi, Alabama,[26] and parts of Louisiana; later Oklahoma[32]
  • Chowanoc (Chowanoke), North Carolina
  • Coharie, North Carolian
  • Congaree (Canggaree), South Carolina[23][33]
  • Coree, North Carolina[29]
  • Coushatta, Louisiana and Texas
  • Coharie, North Carolina
  • Croatan, North Carolina
  • Cusabo coastal South Carolina[26]
  • Eno, North Carolina[23]
  • Garza, Texas, northern Mexico
  • Grigra (Gris), Mississippi[34]
  • Guacata (Santalûces), eastern coastal Florida[27]
  • Guacozo, Florida
  • Guale (Cusabo, Iguaja, Ybaja), coastal Georgia[23][26]
  • Guazoco, southwestern Florida coast[27]
  • Hitchiti, Creek Confederacy, Georgia, Alabama, and Florida[23]
  • Hooks Nation (possibly Chuaque, Huaq, Nuaq),[30] see Backhooks Nation
  • Houma, Louisiana and Mississippi[26]
  • Jaega (Jobe), eastern coastal Florida[24]
  • Jaupin (Weapemoc), North Carolina
  • Jororo, Florida interior[27]
  • Keyauwee, North Carolina[23]
  • Koasati, Tennessee[26]
  • Koroa, Mississippi[23]
  • Luca, southwestern Florida coast[27]
  • Lumbee, North Carolina
  • Machapunga, North Carolina
  • Manahoac, Virginia[35]
  • Matecumbe (Matacumbêses, Matacumbe, Matacombe), Florida Keys[27]
  • Mayaca, Florida[27]
  • Mayaimi (Mayami), interior Florida[24]
  • Mayajuaca, Florida
  • Meherrin, Virginia,[36] North Carolina
  • Mikasuki (Miccosukee), Florida
  • Mobila (Mobile, Movila), northwestern Florida and southern Alabama[26]
  • Mocoso, western Florida[24][27]
  • Monacan, Virginia[29]
  • Monyton (Monetons, Monekot, Moheton) (Siouan), West Virginia and Virginia
  • Mougoulacha, Mississippi[29]
  • Muscogee (Creek), Tennessee, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, Florida, later Oklahoma
    • Abihka, Alabama,[25] later Oklahoma
    • Eufaula tribe, Georgia, later Oklahoma
    • Kialegee Tribal Town, Alabama, later Oklahoma
    • Thlopthlocco Tribal Town, Alabama, Georgia, later Oklahoma
  • Naniaba, northwestern Florida and southern Alabama[26]
  • Natchez, Louisiana and Mississippi[26] later Oklahoma
  • Neusiok (Newasiwac, Neuse River Indians), North Carolina[23]
  • Norwood culture, Apalachee region, Florida, ca. 12,000 BCE—4500 BCE
  • Nottaway, Virginia,[36] North Carolina
  • Occaneechi (Siouan), Virginia[36][37]
  • Oconee, Georgia, Florida
  • Ofo, Arkansas and Mississippi,[26] eastern Tennessee[23]
  • Okchai (Ogchay), central Alabama[23]
  • Okelousa, Louisiana[23]
  • Opelousas, Louisiana[23]
  • Osochee (Oswichee, Usachi, Oosécha), Creek Confederacy, Alabama[23][25]
  • Pacara, Florida
  • Pakana (Pacâni, Pagna, Pasquenan, Pak-ká-na, Pacanas), central Alabama,[23] later Texas[29]
  • Pamlico, formerly North Carolina
  • Pascagoula, Mississippi coast[29]
  • Patiri, southeastern Texas
  • Pee Dee (Pedee), South Carolina[23][38] and North Carolina
  • Pensacola, Florida panhandle and southern Alabama[26]
  • Potoskeet, North Carolina
  • Powhatan Confederacy, Virginia[10]
  • Quinipissa, southeastern Louisiana and Mississippi[25]
  • Rappahannock Tribe, Virginia
  • Roanoke, North Carolina
  • Saluda (Saludee, Saruti), South Carolina[23]
  • Santee (Seretee, Sarati, Sati, Sattees), South Carolina (no relation to Santee Sioux), South Carolina[23]
  • Santa Luces, Florida
  • Saponi, North Carolina,[39] Virginia[36]
  • Saura, North Carolina
  • Sawokli (Sawakola, Sabacola, Sabacôla, Savacola), southern Alabama and Florida panhandle[23]
  • Saxapahaw (Sissipahua, Shacioes), North Carolina[23]
  • Secotan, North Carolina
  • Seminole, Florida and Oklahoma[32]
  • Sewee (Suye, Joye, Xoye, Soya), South Carolina coast[23]
  • Shakori, North Carolina
  • Shoccoree (Haw), North Carolina,[23] possibly Virginia
  • Sissipahaw, North Carolina
  • Stegarake, Virginia[35]
  • Stuckanox (Stukanox), Virginia[36]
  • Sugeree (Sagarees, Sugaws, Sugar, Succa), North Carolina and South Carolina[23]
  • Surruque, east central Florida[40]
  • Suteree (Sitteree, Sutarees, Sataree), North Carolina
  • Taensa, Mississippi[34]
  • Talapoosa, Creek Confederacy, Alabama[25]
  • Tawasa, Alabama[41]
  • Tequesta, southeastern coastal Florida[23][27]
  • Terocodame, Texas and Mexico
    • Codam
    • Hieroquodame
    • Oodame
    • Perocodame
    • Teroodame
  • Timucua, Florida and Georgia[23][26][27]
    • Acuera, central Florida[42]
    • Agua Fresca (or Agua Dulce or Freshwater), interior northeast Florida[42]
    • Arapaha, north central Florida and south central Georgia?[42]
    • Cascangue, coastal southeast Georgia[42]
    • Icafui (or Icafi), coastal southeast Georgia[42]
    • Mocama (or Tacatacuru), coastal northeast Florida and coastal southeast Georgia[42]
    • Northern Utina north central Florida[42]
    • Ocale, central Florida[42]
    • Oconi, interior southeast Georgia[42]
    • Potano, north central Florida[42]
    • Saturiwa, northeast Florida[42]
    • Tacatacuru, coastal southeast Georgia[43]
    • Tucururu (or Tucuru), central? Florida[42]
    • Utina (or Eastern Utina), northeast central Florida[44]
    • Yufera, coastal southeast Georgia[42]
    • Yui (Ibi), coastal southeast Georgia[42]
    • Yustaga, north central Florida[42]
  • Tiou (Tioux), Mississippi[33]
  • Tocaste, Florida[27]
  • Tocobaga, Florida[23][27]
  • Tohomé, northwestern Florida and southern Alabama[26]
  • Tomahitan, eastern Tennessee
  • Topachula, Florida
  • Tukabatchee (Tuk-ke-bat-che), Muscogee Creek Confederacy, Alabama[25]
  • Tuscarora, North Carolina, Virginia, later New York
  • Tutelo (Nahyssan), Virginia[36][37]
  • Tunica, Arkansas and Mississippi[26]
  • Utiza, Florida[24]
  • Uzita, Tampa Bay, Florida[45]
  • Vicela, Florida[24]
  • Viscaynos, Florida
  • Waccamaw, South Carolina
  • Waccamaw Siouan, North Carolina
  • Wateree (Guatari, Watterees), North Carolina[23]
  • Waxhaw (Waxsaws, Wisack, Wisacky, Weesock, Flathead), North Carolina and South Carolina[23][38]
  • Westo, Virginia and South Carolina[29]
  • Winyaw, South Carolina coast[23]
  • Woccon, North Carolina[23][38]
  • Yamasee, Florida, Georgia[29]
  • Yazoo, southeastern tip of Arkansas, eastern Louisiana, Mississippi[23][46]
  • Yuchi (Euchee), central Tennessee,[23][26] later Oklahoma


This region is sometimes called Oasisamerica and includes parts of what is now Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico, Utah, Chihuahua, and Sonora

  • Ak Chin, Arizona
  • Southern Athabaskan
    • Chiricahua Apache, New Mexico and Oklahoma
    • Jicarilla Apache, New Mexico
    • Lipan Apache, Texas
    • Mescalero Apache, New Mexico
    • Navajo (Navaho, Diné), Arizona and New Mexico
    • San Carlos Apache, Arizona
    • Tonto Apache, Arizona
    • Western Apache (Coyotero Apache), Arizona
    • White Mountain Apache, Arizona
  • Aranama (aka Hanáma, Hanáme, Chaimamé, Charinames, Xaranames, Taranames)
  • Coahuiltecan, Texas, northern Mexico
  • Cochimi, Baja California
  • Cocopa, Arizona
  • Comecrudo Texas, northern Mexico
  • Cotoname (aka Carrizo de Camargo)
  • Genízaro Arizona, New Mexico
  • Halchidhoma, Arizona and California
  • Hualapai, Arizona
  • Havasupai, Arizona
  • Hohokam, formerly Arizona
  • Jumano, Texas, Mexico
  • Karankawa, Texas
  • Kavelchadhom
  • La Junta, Texas, Chihuahua
  • Mamulique, Texas, northern Mexico
  • Manso, Texas, Chihuahua
  • Maricopa, Arizona
  • Mojave, Arizona, California, and Nevada
  • Pima, Arizona
  • Pima Bajo
  • Piro
  • Pueblo people, Arizona and New Mexico
    • Ancestral Pueblo, formerly Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico, Utah
    • Hano, Arizona
    • Hopi, Arizona
    • Keres people, New Mexico
      • Acoma Pueblo, New Mexico
      • Cochiti Pueblo, New Mexico
      • Laguna Pueblo, New Mexico
      • San Felipe Pueblo, New Mexico
      • Santa Ana Pueblo, New Mexico
      • Santo Domingo Pueblo, New Mexico
      • Zia Pueblo, New Mexico
    • Tewa, New Mexico
      • Nambé Pueblo, New Mexico
      • Ohkay Owingeh, New Mexico
      • Pojoaque Pueblo, New Mexico
      • San Ildefonso Pueblo, New Mexico
      • Tesuque Pueblo, New Mexico
      • Santa Clara Pueblo, New Mexico
    • Tiwa people, New Mexico
    • Towa
      • Jemez Pueblo, New Mexico
    • Zuni people, New Mexico
  • Qahatika
  • Quechan (Yuma), Arizona and California
  • Quems
  • Solano
  • Suma
  • Tamique
  • Toboso
  • Tohono O'odham (Papago), Arizona and Mexico
  • Tompiro
  • Ubate
  • Walapai, Arizona
  • Yaqui, Arizona
  • Yavapai, (Mojave-Apache) see Yavapai-Apache Nation, Yavapai-Prescott Tribe Arizona

Mexico and Mesoamerica

The indigenous peoples of Mexico, Central America and the Caribbean are generally classified by language, environment, and cultural similarities.




Partially organized per Handbook of South American Indians.[48]


Anthropologist Julian Steward defined the Antilles cultural area, which includes all of the Antilles and Bahamas, except for Trinidad and Tobago.[48]

  • Arawak
    • Taino, Greater Antilles, northern Lesser Antilles
    • Igneri, Lesser Antilles, 400—1000 CE
    • Nepoya, Trinidad
    • Suppoya, Trinidad
  • Caquetio, Aruba, Bonaire, Curaçao, and Venezuela
  • Carib, Lesser Antilles
    • Garifuna ("Black Carib"), Originally Dominica and Saint Vincent, currently Belize, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua
  • Ciboney, Greater Antilles, ca. 1000—300 BCE[49]
  • Ciguayo, Hispaniola
  • Garifuna ("Black Carib"), Originally Dominica and Saint Vincent, currently Belize, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua
  • Ortoiroid, ca. 5500—200 BCE[50]
    • Coroso culture, Puerto Rico, 1000 BCE–200 CE[50]
    • Krum Bay culture, Virgin Islands, St. Thomas, 1500—200 BCE[50]
  • Saladoid culture, 500 BCE—545 CE[50]

Central America

The Central American culture area includes part of El Salvador, most of Honduras, all of Nicaragua, Costa Rica, and Panama, and some peoples on or near the Pacific coasts of Colombia and Ecuador.[48]

  • Bagaces, Costa Rica
  • Bokota, Panama
  • Boruca, Costa Rica
  • Bribri, Costa Rica
  • Cabécar, Costa Rica
  • Cacaopera, Costa Rica
  • Cayada, Ecuador
  • Changuena, Panama
  • Embera-Wounaan (Chocó, Wounaan), Colombia, Panama
  • Choluteca, Honduras
  • Coiba, Costa Rica
  • Coito, Costa Rica
  • Corobici, Costa Rica
  • Desaguadero, Costa Rica
  • Dorasque, Panama
  • Guatuso, Costa Rica
  • Guaymí, Panama
    • Movere, Panama
    • Murire, Panama
  • Guetar, Costa Rica
  • Kuna, Panama and Columbia
  • Lenca, Honduras and El Salvador
  • Mangue, Nicaragua
  • Maribichocoa, Honduras and Nicaragua
  • Matagalpa, Honduras
  • Miskito, Hondrus, Nicaragua
  • Nagrandah, Nicaragua
  • Ngöbe Buglé, Bocas del Toro, Panama
  • Nicarao, Nicaragua
  • Nicoya, Costa Rica
  • Orotiña, Costa Rica
  • Paparo, Panama
  • Paya, Honduras
  • Pech, northeastern Honduras
  • Piria, Nicaragua
  • Poton, Honduras and El Salvador
  • Quepo, Costa Rica
  • Rama, Nicaragua
  • Sigua, Panama
  • Subtiaba, Nicaragua
  • Suerre, Costa Rica
  • Sumo (Mayagna), Honduras and Nicaragua
  • Terraba (Naso, Teribe, Tjër Di), Panama
  • Tojar, Panama
  • Tolupan (Jicaque), Honduras
  • Ulva, El Salvador, Honduras and Nicaragua
  • Voto, Costa Rica
  • Yasika, Nicaragua

Colombia and Venezuela

The Colombia and Venezuela culture area includes most of Colombia and Venezuela. Southern Colombia is in the Andean culture area, as are some peoples of central and northeastern Colombia, who are surrounded by peoples of the Colombia and Venezuela culture. Eastern Venezuela is in the Guianas culture area, and southeastern Colombia and southwestern Venezuela are in the Amazonia culture area.[48]

  • Abibe, northwestern Colombia
  • Aburrá, central Colombia
  • Agual, western Colombia
  • Amaní, central Colombia
  • Ancerma, western Colombia
  • Antiochia, Colombia
  • Arbi, western Colombia
  • Arma, western Colombia
  • Atunceta, western Colombia
  • Auracana, northeastern Colombia
  • Buriticá, western Colombia
  • Calamari, northwestern Colombia
  • Caramanta, western Columbia
  • Carate, northeastern Colombia
  • Carare, northeastern Colombia
  • Carex, northwestern Colombia
  • Cari, western Colombia
  • Carrapa, western Colombia
  • Cartama, western Colombia
  • Corbago, northeastern Colombia
  • Cosina, northeastern Colombia
  • Catio, northwestern Colombia
  • Cenú, northwestern Colombia
  • Cenufaná, northwestern Colombia
  • Chanco, western Colombia
  • Coanoa, northeastern Colombia
  • Evéjito, western Colombia
  • Fincenú, northwestern Colombia
  • Gorrón, western Colombia
  • Guambía, western Colombia
  • Guanebucan, northeastern Colombia
  • Guazuzú, northwestern Colombia
  • Jamundí, western Colombia
  • Lile, western Colombia
  • Lache, central Colombia
  • Maco (Mako, Itoto, Wotuja, or Jojod), northeastern Colombia and western Venezuela
  • Mompox, northwestern Colombia
  • Motilone, northeastern Colombia and western Venezuela
  • Naura, central Colombia
  • Nauracota, central Colombia
  • Noanamá (Waunana, Huaunana, Woun Meu), northwestern Colombia and Panama
  • Nutabé, northwestern Colombia
  • Opón, northeastern Colombia
  • Pacabueye, northwestern Colombia
  • Pancenú, northwestern Colombia
  • Patángoro, central Colombia
  • Paucura, western Colombia
  • Pemed, northwestern Colombia
  • Pequi people, western Colombia
  • Piaroa, Colombia and Venezuela
  • Picara, western Colombia
  • Pozo, western Colombia
  • Quimbaya, central Colombia
  • Quinchia, western Colombia
  • Tahamí, northwestern Colombia
  • Tamalameque, northwestern Colombia
  • Timba, western Colombia
  • Tolú, northwestern Colombia
  • Toro, western Colombia
  • Tupe, northeastern Colombia
  • Turbaco people, northwestern Colombia
  • Urabá, northwestern Colombia
  • Urezo, northwestern Colombia
  • Wayuu (Wayu, Wayúu, Guajiro, Wahiro), northeastern Colombia and northwestern Venezuela
  • Xiriguana, northeastern Colombia
  • Yamicí, northwestern Colombia
  • Yapel, northwestern Colombia
  • Yariguies (Yarigui), northeastern Colombia
  • Yukpa/Yuko, northeastern Colombia
  • Zamyrua, northeastern Colombia
  • Zendagua, northwestern Colombia
  • Zopia, western Colombia

South America


This region includes northern parts Colombia, French Guiana, Guyana, Suriname, Venezuela, and parts of the Amazonas, Amapá, Pará, and Roraima States in Brazil.

  • Acawai (6N 60W)
  • Acokwa (3N 53W)
  • Acuria (5N 55W)
  • Amariba (2N 60W)
  • Amicuana (2N 53W)
  • Apalaí (Apalai), Amapá, Brazil
  • Apirua (3N 53W)
  • Apurui (3N 53W)
  • Aracaret (4N 53W)
  • Aramagoto (2N 54W)
  • Aramisho (2N 54W)
  • Arebato (7N 65W)
  • Arekena (2N 67W)
  • Arigua
  • Arinagoto (4N 63W)
  • Arua (1N 50W)
  • Aruacay, Venezuela
  • Atorai (2N 59W)
  • Atroahy (1S 62W)
  • Auaké, Brazil and Guyana
  • Baniwa (Baniva) (3N 68W), Brazil, Colombia and Venezuela
  • Baraüana (1N 65W)
  • Bonari (3S 58W)
  • Baré (3N 67W)
  • Caberre (4N 71 W)
  • Cadupinago
  • Cariaya (1S 63 W)
  • Carib (Kalinago), Venezuela
  • Carinepagoto, Trinidad
  • Chaguan, Venezuela
  • Chaima, Venezuela
  • Cuaga, Venezuela
  • Cuacua, Venezuela
  • Cumanagoto, Venezuela
  • Guayano, Venezuela
  • Guinau (4N 65W)
  • Hixkaryána, Amazonas, Brazil
  • Inao (4N 65W)
  • Ingarikó, Brazil, Guyana and Venezuela
  • Jaoi (Yao), Guyana, Trinidad and Venezuela
  • Kali'na, Brazil, Guyana, French Guiana, Suriname, Venezuela
  • Lokono (Arawak, Locono), Guyana, Trinidad, Venezuela
  • Macapa (2N 59W)
  • Macushi, Brazil and Guyana
  • Maipure (4N 67W)
  • Maopityan (2N 59W)
  • Mapoyo (Mapoye), Venezuela
  • Marawan (3N 52W)
  • Mariusa, Venezuela
  • Marourioux (3N 53W)
  • Nepuyo (Nepoye), Guyana, Trinidad and Venezuela
  • Orealla, Guyana
  • Palengue, Venezuela
  • Palikur, Brazil, French Guiana
  • Parauana (2N 63W)
  • Parauien (3S 60W)
  • Pareco, Venezuela
  • Paria, Venezuela
  • Patamona, Roraima, Brazil
  • Pauishana (2N 62W)
  • Pemon (Arecuna), Brazil, Guyana, and Venezuela
  • Piapoco (3N 70W)
  • Piaroa, Venezuela
  • Pino (3N 54W)
  • Piritú, Venezuela
  • Purui (2N 52W)
  • Saliba (Sáliva), Venezuela
  • Shebayo, Trinidad
  • Tagare, Venezuela
  • Tamanaco, Venezuela
  • Tarumá (3S 60W)
  • Tibitibi, Venezuela
  • Tiriyó (Tarëno), Brazil, Suriname
  • Tocoyen (3N 53W)
  • Tumuza, Venezuela
  • Wai-Wai, Amazonas, Brazil and Guyana
  • Wapishana, Brazil and Guyana
  • Warao (Warrau), Guyana and Venezuela
  • Wayana (Oyana), Pará, Brazil
  • Yanomami, Venezuela and Amazonas, Brazil

Eastern Brazil

This region includes the Ceará, Goiás, Mato Grosso, Pará, and Santa Catarina states of Brazil

  • Apinajé (Apinaye Caroyo), Rio Araguiaia
  • Apurinã
  • Arara, Pará
  • Bororo (Borôro), Mato Grosso
  • Botocudo (Lakiãnõ)
  • Carijo Guarani
  • East Brazilian Tradition (Precolumbian culture)
  • Guató, Mato Grosso
  • Kadiwéu (Guaicuru)
  • Karajá (Iny), Goiás, Mato Grosso, Pará, and Tocantins
  • Kaxixó
  • Kayapo (Mebêngôkre), Mato Grosso and Pará
  • Laklãnõ, Santa Catarina
  • Mehim (Krahô, Crahao), Rio Tocantins
  • Ofayé
  • Parakatêjê (Gavião), Pará
  • Pataxó
  • Potiguara (Pitigoares), Ceará
  • Tabajara
  • Tupiniquim
  • Umutina (Barbados)
  • Xakriabá
  • Xavante, Mato Grosso
  • Xerente, Goiás
  • Xucuru


  • Andean Hunting-Collecting Tradition, Argentina, 11,000–4,000 CE
  • Aymara, Bolivia, Chile, Peru
  • Cañari, Ecuador
  • Capulí culture, Ecuador, 800—1500 CE
  • Cerro Narrio (Chaullabamba) (Precolumbian culture)
  • Chachapoyas, Amazonas, Peru
  • Chachilla (Cayapas)
  • Chanka (Chanca), Peru
  • Chavín, northern Peru, 900–200 BCE
  • Chincha people, Peru (Precolumbian culture)
  • Chuquibamba culture (Precolumbian culture)
  • Conchucos
  • Diaguita
  • Guangaia (Precolumbian culture)
  • Ichuña microlithic tradition (Precolumbian culture)
  • Inca Empire (Inka), based in Peru
  • Jama-Coaque (Precolumbian culture)
  • Killke culture, Peru, 900–1200 CE
  • Kogi
  • Kolla (Colla), Argentina, Bolivia, Chile
  • La Tolita (Precolumbian culture)
  • Las Vegas culture, coastal Ecuador, 8000 BCE–4600 BCE
  • Lauricocha culture, Peru, 8000–2500 BCE
  • Lima culture, Peru, 100–650 CE
  • Maina, Ecuador, Peru
  • Manteño-Huancavilca (Precolumbian culture)
  • Milagro (Precolumbian culture)
  • Mollo culture, Bolivia, 1000–1500 CE
  • Muisca, Colombian highlands (Precolumbian culture)
  • Pachacama (Precolumbian culture)
  • Panzaleo (Precolumbian culture)
  • Pasto
  • Pijao, Colombia
  • Quechua (Kichua, Kichwa)
  • Quitu culture, 2000 BCE—1550 CE
  • Salinar (Precolumbian culture)
  • Saraguro
  • Tiwanaku culture (Tiahuanaco), 400-1000 CE, Bolivia
  • Tsáchila (Colorado), Ecuador
  • Tuza-Piartal (Precolumbian culture)
  • Uru, Bolivia, Peru
    • Uru-Murato, Bolivia
  • Wari culture, central coast and highlands of Peru, 500–1000 CE
    • Pocra culture, Ayacucho Province, Peru, 500–1000 CE

Pacific lowlands

  • Amotape complex, northern coastal Peru, 9,000–7,1000 BCE
  • Atacameño (Atacama, Likan Antaí), Chile
  • Awá, Colombia and Ecuador
  • Bara, Colombia
  • Cara culture, coastal Ecuador, 500 BCE-1550 CE
  • Bahía, Ecuador, 500 BCE–500 CE
  • Casma culture, coastal Peru, 1000–1400 CE
  • Chancay, central coastal Peru, 1000–1450 CE
  • Chango, coastal Peru, northern Chile
  • Chimú, north coastal Peru, 1000–1450 CE
  • Cupisnique (Precolumbian culture), 1000-200 BCE, coastal Peru
  • Lambayeque (Sican culture), north coastal Peru, 750–1375 CE
  • Machalilla culture, coastal Ecuador, 1500–1100 BCE
  • Manteño civilization, western Ecuador, 850–1600 CE
  • Moche (Mochica), north coastal Peru, 1-750 CE
  • Nazca culture (Nasca), south coastal Peru, 1-700 CE
  • Norte Chico civilization (Precolumbian culture), coastal Peru
  • Paiján culture, northern coastal Peru, 8,700–5,900 BCE
  • Paracas, south coastal Peru, 600-175 BCE
  • Recuay culture, Peru (Precolumbian culture)
  • Tallán (Precolumbian culture), north coastal Peru
  • Valdivia culture, Ecuador, 3500–1800 BCE
  • Virú culture, Piura Region, Peru, 200 BCE–300 CE
  • Wari culture (Huari culture), Peru, 500–1000 CE
  • Yukpa (Yuko), Colombia
  • Yurutí, Colombia
  • Zenú, Colombia, 200 BCE–1600 CE


Northwestern Amazon

This region includes Amazonas in Brazil; the Amazonas and Putumayo Departments in Colombia; Cotopaxi, Los Rios, Morona-Santiago, Napo, and Pastaza Provinces and the Oriente Region in Ecuador; and the Loreto Region in Peru.

  • Arabela, Loreto Region, Peru
  • Arapaso (Arapaco), Amazonas, Brazil
  • Baniwa
  • Barbudo, Loreto Region, Peru
  • Bora, Loreto Region, Peru
  • Candoshi-Shapra (Chapras), Loreto Region, Peru
  • Carútana (Arara), Amazonas, Brazil
  • Chayahuita (Chaywita) Loreto Region, Peru
  • Cocama, Loreto Region, Peru
  • Cofán (Cofan), Putumayo Department, Colombia and Ecuador
  • Cubeo (Kobeua), Amazonas, Brazil and Colombia
  • Dâw, Rio Negro, Brazil
  • Flecheiro
  • Huaorani (Waorani, Waodani, Waos), Ecuador
  • Hupda, Brazil, Colombia
  • Jibito, Loreto Region, Peru
  • Jivaroan peoples, Ecuador and Peru
    • Achuar, Morona-Santiago Province and Oriente Region, Ecuador and Loreto Region, Peru
    • Aguaruna (Aguarana), Ecuador, Peru
    • Huambisa, Peru
    • Shuar, Morona-Santiago Province and Oriente Region, Ecuador and Loreto Region, Peru
  • Kachá (Shimaco), Loreto Region, Peru
  • Kamsá (Sebondoy), Putumayo Department, Colombia
  • Kanamarí, Amazonas, Brazil
  • Kichua (Quichua)
    • Canelo Kichua (Canelos-Quichua), Pataza Province, Ecuador
    • Quijos-Quichua (Napo-Quichua), Ecuador and Peru
    • Sarayacu Kichua, Pastaza Province, Ecuador
  • Korubu, Amazonas, Brazil
  • Kugapakori-Nahua
  • Macaguaje (Majaguaje), Río Caquetá, Colombia
  • Machiguenga, Peru
  • Makuna (Buhagana), Colombia
  • Marubo
  • Matsés (Mayoruna, Maxuruna), Brazil and Peru
  • Miriti, Amazonas Department, Colombia
  • Murato, Loreto Region, Peru
  • Mura, Amazonas, Brazil
    • Pirahã (Mura-pirarrã), Amazonas, Brazil
  • Ocaina, Loreto Region, Peru
  • Omagua (Cambeba, Kambeba, Umana), Amazonas, Brazil
  • Orejón (Orejon), Napo Province, Ec
  • Panoan, western Brazil, Bolivia, Peru
  • Sharpas
  • Siona (Sioni), Amazonas Department, Colombia
  • Siusi, Amazonas, Brazil
  • Tariano (Tariana), Amazonas, Brazil
  • Tsohom Djapá
  • Tukano (Tucano), Brazil
    • Barasana (Pareroa, Taiwano), Amazonas, Brazil and Vaupés, Colombia
    • Eastern Tukanoan (Tucanoan)
    • Macuna, Amazonas, Brazil and Vaupés, Colombia
  • Waikino (Vaikino), Amazonas, Brazil
  • Waimiri-Atroari (Kinja, Uaimiri-Atroari), Amazonas and Roraima, Brazil
  • Wanano (Unana, Vanana), Amazonas, Brazil
  • Witoto
    • Murui Witoto, Loreto Region, Peru
  • Yagua (Yahua), Loreta Region, Peru
  • Yaminahua
  • Yora
  • Záparo (Zaparo), Pastaza Province, Ecuador

Eastern Amazon

This region includes Amazonas, Maranhão, and parts of Pará States in Brazil.

Southern Amazon

This region includes southern Brazil (Mato Grosso, Mato Grosso do Sul, parts of Pará, and Rondônia) and Eastern Bolivia (Beni Department).

  • Assuriní do Toncantins (Tocantin)
  • Aweti (Aueto), Mato Grosso, Brazil
  • Bakairí (Bakairi)
  • Chácobo (Chacobo)
  • Chiquitano (Chiquito)
  • Cinta Larga, Mato Grosso, Brazil
  • Enawene Nawe, Mato Grosso, Brazil
  • Gavião of Rondônia
  • Guarayu
  • Ikpeng (Xicao), Mato Grosso, Brazil
  • Irántxe (Iranche)
  • Juma (Kagwahiva), Rondônia, Brazil
  • Jurúna (Yaruna, Juruna, Yudjá), Mato Grosso, Brazil
  • Kaiabi (Caiabi, Cajabi, Kajabi, Kayabi), Mato Grosso, Brazil
  • Kalapálo (Kalapalo), Mato Grosso, Brazil
  • Kamayurá (Camayura), Mato Grosso, Brazil
  • Kanoê (Kapixaná), Rondônia, Brazil
  • Karipuná (Caripuna)
  • Karitiâna (Caritiana), Brazil
  • Kayapo, Mato Grosso, Brazil
  • Kuikuro, Mato Grosso, Brazil
  • Matipu, Mato Grosso, Brazil
  • Mehináku (Mehinacu, Mehinako), Mato Grosso, Brazil
  • Moxo (Mojo), Bolivia
  • Nahukuá (Nahuqua), Mato Grosso, Brazil
  • Nambikuára (Nambicuara, Nambikwara), Mato Grosso, Brazil
  • Pacahuara (Pacaguara)
  • Pacajá (Pacaja)
  • Panará, Mato Grosso and Pará, Brazil
  • Parecís (Paressi)
  • Rikbaktsa (Erikbaksa)
  • Rio Pardo people, Mato Grosso, Brazil
  • Sateré-Mawé (Maue, Brazil
  • Suyá (Kisedje), Mato Grosso, Brazil
  • Tacana
  • Tapajó (Tapajo)
  • Tapirapé (Tapirape)
  • Tenharim
  • Terena, Mato Gross and Mato Grosso do Sul, Brazil
  • Trumai, Mato Grosso, Brazil
  • Tsimané (Pano)
  • Uru-Eu-Wau-Wau, Rondônia, Brazil
  • Wari' (Pacanawa, Waricaca'), Rondônia, Brazil
  • Wauja (Waurá, Waura), Mato Grosso, Brazil
  • Wuy jugu (Mundurucu, Munduruku)
  • Yawalapiti (Iaualapiti), Mato Grosso, Brazil

Southwestern Amazon

This region includes the Cuzco, Huánuco Junín, Loreto, Madre de Dios, and Ucayali Regions of eastern Peru, parts of Acre, Amazonas, and Rondônia, Brazil, and parts of the La Paz and Beni Departments of Bolivia.

  • Aguano (Uguano), Peru
  • Aikanã, Rondônia, Brazil
  • Akuntsu, Rondônia, Brazil
  • Amahuaca, Brazil, Peru
  • Amarakaeri
  • Asháninka (Campa, Chuncha), Acre, Brazil and Junín, Pasco, Huánuco, and Ucayali, Peru
  • Banawá (Jafí, Kitiya), Amazonas, Brazil
  • Cashibo (Carapache), Huánuco Region, Peru
  • Conibo (Shipibo-Conibo), Peru and Amazonas, Brazil
  • Ese Ejja (Chama), Beni Department, Bolivia
  • Harakmbut, Madre de Dios, Peru
  • Hi-Merimã, Himarimã, Amazonas, Brazil
  • Iyene
  • Jamamadi, Acre and Amazonas, Brazil
  • Kareneri, Madre de Dios Region, Peru
  • Kulina (Culina)
  • Kwaza (Coaiá, Koaiá), Rondônia, Brazil
  • Latundê, Rondônia, Brazil
  • Matís (Matis), Brazil
  • Mayoruna (Maxuruna)
  • Parintintin (Kagwahiva’nga, Kagwahiva), Brazil
  • Piro, Cuzco Region, Peru
  • Pukirieri (Puquiri)
  • Shipibo, Loreto Region, Peru
  • Ticuna (Tucuna)
  • Toromona, La Paz Department, Bolivia
  • Yanesha (Amuesha), Cusco Region, Peru
  • Yawanawa (Jaminawá, Marinawá, Xixinawá), Acre, Brazil; Madre de Dios, Peru; and Bolivia

Gran Chaco

  • Abipón, Argentina, historic group
  • Angaite (Angate), northwestern Paraguay
  • Ayoreo[51] (Morotoco, Moro, Zamuco), Bolivia and Paraguay
  • Chamacoco (Zamuko),[51] Paraguay
  • Chané, Argentina and Bolivia
  • Chiquitano (Chiquito, Tarapecosi), eastern Bolivia
  • Chorote (Choroti),[51] Iyojwa'ja Chorote, Manjuy), Argentina, Bolivia, and Paraguay
  • Guana[51] (Kaskihá), Paraguay
  • Guaraní,[51] Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, and Paraguay
    • Bolivian Guarani
      • Chiriguano, Bolivia
      • Guarayo (East Bolivian Guarani)
    • Chiripá (Tsiripá, Ava), Bolivia
    • Pai Tavytera (Pai, Montese, Ava), Bolivia
    • Tapieté (Guaraní Ñandéva, Yanaigua),[51] eastern Bolivia
    • Yuqui (Bia), Bolivia
  • Guaycuru peoples, Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, and Paraguay
    • Mbayá (Caduveo), historic
      • Kadiweu, Brazil
    • Mocoví (Mocobí), Argentina
    • Pilagá (Pilage Toba)
    • Toba[51] (Qom, Frentones), Argentina, Bolivia, and Paraguay
  • Kaiwá,[51] Argentina and Brazil
  • Lengua people (Enxet),[51] Paraguay
    • North Lengua (Eenthlit, Enlhet, Maskoy), Paraguay
    • South Lengua, Paraguay
  • Lulé (Pelé, Tonocoté), Argentina
  • Maká[51] (Towolhi), Paraguay
  • Nivaclé (Ashlushlay,[51] Chulupí, Chulupe, Guentusé), Argentina and Paraguay
  • Sanapaná[51] (Quiativis), Paraguay
  • Vilela, Argentina
  • Wichí (Mataco),[51] Argentina and Bolivia

Southern Cone

Patagonian languages at the time of European/African contact
  • Aché, southeastern Paraguay
  • Alacaluf (Kaweshkar, Halakwulup), Chile
  • Chaná (extinct), formerly Uruguay
  • Chandule (Chandri)
  • Charrúa, southern Brazil and Uruguay
  • Chono (Precolumbian culture), formerly Chiloé Archipelago, Chile
  • Comechingon (Henia-Camiare), Argentina
  • Haush (Manek'enk, Mánekenk, Aush), Tierra del Fuego
  • Het (Querandí) (extinct), formerly Argentinian Pampas
    • Chechehet
    • Didiuhet
    • Taluhet
  • Huarpe (Warpes) (extinct), Strait of Magellan, Chile
    • Allentiac (Alyentiyak)
    • Millcayac (Milykayak)
    • Oico
  • Mapuche (Araucanian), southwestern Argentina and Chile
    • Huilliche (Huillice, Hulliche), Chile
    • Lafquenche
    • Mapuche, southwestern Argentina and Chile
    • Pehuenche, south central Chile and Argentina
    • Picunche, formerly Chile
    • Promaucae, formerly Chile
  • Mbeguá (extinct), formerly Paraná River, Argentina
  • Minuane (extinct), formerly Uruguay
  • Puelche (Guenaken, Pampa) (extinct), Argentinian and Chilean Andes
  • Tehuelche, Patagonia
    • Künün-a-Güna (Gennakenk, Gennaken)
    • Küwach-a-Güna
    • Mecharnúekenk
    • Aónikenk (Zuidelijke Tehuelche)
  • Selk'nam (Ona), southern Argentina and Chile
  • Yaghan (Yamana), Tierra del Fuego
  • Yaro (Jaro)


Indigenous languages of the Americas (or Amerindian Languages) are spoken by indigenous peoples from the southern tip of South America to Alaska and Greenland, encompassing the land masses which constitute the Americas. These indigenous languages consist of dozens of distinct language families as well as many language isolates and unclassified languages. Many proposals to group these into higher-level families have been made. According to UNESCO, most of the indigenous American languages in North America are critically endangered and many of them are already extinct.[52]

(Spanish) Aridoamerican tribes by location
(Spanish) Mesoamerican tribes by location
genetic groups according to DNA Tribes
  1. Arctic
  2. Salishan
  3. Athabaskan
  4. North Amerindian
  5. Ojibwa
  6. Mexican
  7. Mayan
  9. Andean
  10. Amazonian
  11. Gran Chaco
  12. Patagonian

Genetic classification

The haplogroup most commonly associated with Indigenous Americans is Haplogroup Q1a3a (Y-DNA).[53] Y-DNA, like (mtDNA), differs from other nuclear chromosomes in that the majority of the Y chromosome is unique and does not recombine during meiosis. This has the effect that the historical pattern of mutations can easily be studied.[54] The pattern indicates Indigenous Amerindians experienced two very distinctive genetic episodes; first with the initial-peopling of the Americas, and secondly with European colonization of the Americas.[55][56] The former is the determinant factor for the number of gene lineages and founding haplotypes present in today's Indigenous Amerindian populations.[55]

Human settlement of the Americas occurred in stages from the Bering sea coast line, with an initial 20,000-year layover on Beringia for the founding population.[57][58] The micro-satellite diversity and distributions of the Y lineage specific to South America indicates that certain Amerindian populations have been isolated since the initial colonization of the region..[59] The Na-Dené, Inuit and Indigenous Alaskan populations exhibit haplogroup Q (Y-DNA) mutations, however are distinct from other indigenous Amerindians with various mtDNA mutations.[60][61][62] This suggests that the earliest migrants into the northern extremes of North America and Greenland derived from later populations.[63]

See also


  1. ^ "Culture Areas Index". the Canadian Museum of Civilization. 
  2. ^ Pritzker 112
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z aa ab ac ad ae af ag ah ai aj ak al am an ao ap aq ar as at au Heizer ix
  4. ^ Heizer 205-7
  5. ^ Heizer 190
  6. ^ Heizer 593
  7. ^ Heizer 769
  8. ^ Heizer 249
  9. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z aa ab ac ad ae af ag Sturtevant and Trigger, ix
  10. ^ a b c d e f Sturtevant and Trigger, 241
  11. ^ a b c d Sturtevant and Trigger, 198
  12. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n Sturtevant and Trigger, 161
  13. ^ Sturtevant and Trigger, 96
  14. ^ Sturtevant and Trigger, 255
  15. ^ a b c d e f g h D'Azevedo, ix
  16. ^ a b c d e f g Pritzker, 230
  17. ^ D'Azevedo, 161-2
  18. ^ D'Azevedo, 282
  19. ^ a b c d D'Azevedo, 306
  20. ^ a b D'Azevedo, 335
  21. ^ a b c d e f D'Azevedo, 339
  22. ^ a b c d D'Azevedo, 340
  23. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z aa ab ac ad ae af ag ah ai aj ak al am Sturtevant and Fogelson, 69
  24. ^ a b c d e f Sturtevant and Fogelson, 205
  25. ^ a b c d e f g h i j Sturtevant and Fogelson, 374
  26. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x Sturtevant and Fogelson, ix
  27. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m Sturtevant and Fogelson, 214
  28. ^ Sturtevant and Fogelson, 673
  29. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k Sturtevant and Fogelson, 81-82
  30. ^ a b c Sturtevant and Fogelson, 315
  31. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t Sturtevant, 617
  32. ^ a b c d Frank, Andrew K. Indian Removal. Oklahoma Historical Society's Encyclopedia of Oklahoma History and Culture. . Retrieved 10 July 2009.
  33. ^ a b Sturtevant and Fogelson, 188
  34. ^ a b Sturtevant and Fogelson, 598-9
  35. ^ a b Sturtevant and Fogelson, 290
  36. ^ a b c d e f g h i Sturtevant and Fogelson, 293
  37. ^ a b Sturtevant and Fogelson, 291
  38. ^ a b c Sturtevant and Fogelson, 302
  39. ^ Haliwa-Saponi Tribe. . Retrieved 10 July 2009.
  40. ^ Hann 1993
  41. ^ Sturtevant and Fogelson, 78, 668
  42. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o Hann 1996, 5-13
  43. ^ Milanich 1999, p. 49.
  44. ^ Milanich 1996, p. 46.
  45. ^ Hann 2003:11
  46. ^ Sturtevant and Fogelson, 190
  47. ^ "Paipai Language (Akwa'ala)." Native Languages of the Americas. . Retrieved 10 Sept 2010.
  48. ^ a b c d Steward, Julian H. (1948) Editor. Handbook of South American Indians. Volume 4 The Circum-Caribbean Tribes. Smithsonian Institution Bureau of American Ethnology Bulletin 143.
  49. ^ "Aboriginal Roots of Cuban Culture." (retrieved 9 July 2011)
  50. ^ a b c d "Prehistory of the Caribbean Culture Area." Southeast Archaeological Center. (retrieved 9 July 2011)
  51. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m "Cultural Thesaurus." National Museum of the American Indian. (retrieved 18 Feb 2011)
  52. ^ Gordon, Raymond G., Jr. (Ed.). (2005). Ethnologue: Languages of the world (15th ed.). Dallas, TX: SIL International. ISBN 1-55671-159-X. (Online version:
  53. ^ "Y-Chromosome Evidence for Differing Ancient Demographic Histories in the Americas" (PDF). Department of Biology, University College, London; Departamento de Gene´tica, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul, Porto Alegre, Brazil; Instituto Venezolano de Investigaciones Cientı´ficas, Caracas, Venezuela; Departamento de Gene´tica, Universidade Federal do Parana´, Curitiba, Brazil; 5Department of Anthropology, University of New Mexico, Albuquerque; 6Laboratorio de Gene´tica Humana, Universidad de los Andes, Bogota´; Victoria Hospital, Prince Albert, Canada; Subassembly of Medical Sciences, Mongolian Academy of Sciences, Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia; Laboratorio de Gene´tica Molecular, Facultad de Medicina, Universidad de Antioquia, Medellı´n, Colombia; Universite´ de Montreal. University College London 73:524–539. 2003. Retrieved 2010-01-22. 
  54. ^ Orgel L (2004). "Prebiotic chemistry and the origin of the RNA world" (PDF). Crit Rev Biochem Mol Biol 39 (2): 99–123. doi:10.1080/10409230490460765. PMID 15217990. Retrieved 2010-01-19. 
  55. ^ a b "Learn about Y-DNA Haplogroup Q" (Verbal tutorial possible). Genebase Systems. 2008. Retrieved 2009-11-21. "Haplogroups are defined by unique mutation events such as single nucleotide polymorphisms, or SNPs. These SNPs mark the branch of a haplogroup, and indicate that all descendents of that haplogroup at one time shared a common ancestor. The Y-DNA SNP mutations were passed from father to son over thousands of years. Over time, additional SNPs occur within a haplogroup, leading to new lineages. These new lineages are considered subclades of the haplogroup. Each time a new mutation occurs, there is a new branch in the haplogroup, and therefore a new subclade. Haplogroup Q, possibly the youngest of the 20 Y-chromosome haplogroups, originated with the SNP mutation M242 in a man from Haplogroup P that likely lived in Siberia approximately 15,000 to 20,000 years before present" 
  56. ^ Wells, Spencer; Read, Mark (2002) (Digitised online by Google books). The Journey of Man - A Genetic Odyssey. Random House. ISBN 0812971469. Retrieved 2009-11-21. 
  57. ^ "First Americans Endured 20,000-Year Layover - Jennifer Viegas, Discovery News". Retrieved 2009-11-18. "Archaeological evidence, in fact, recognizes that people started to leave Beringia for the New World around 40,000 years ago, but rapid expansion into North America didn't occur until about 15,000 years ago, when the ice had literally broken"  page 2
  58. ^ Than, Ker (2008). "New World Settlers Took 20,000-Year Pit Stop". National Geographic Society. Retrieved 2010-01-23. "Over time descendants developed a unique culture—one that was different from the original migrants' way of life in Asia but which contained seeds of the new cultures that would eventually appear throughout the Americas" 
  59. ^ "Summary of knowledge on the subclades of Haplogroup Q". Genebase Systems. 2009. Retrieved 2009-11-22. 
  60. ^ Ruhlen M (November 1998). "The origin of the Na-Dene". Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 95 (23): 13994–6. doi:10.1073/pnas.95.23.13994. PMC 25007. PMID 9811914. 
  61. ^ Zegura SL, Karafet TM, Zhivotovsky LA, Hammer MF (January 2004). "High-resolution SNPs and microsatellite haplotypes point to a single, recent entry of Native American Y chromosomes into the Americas". Molecular Biology and Evolution 21 (1): 164–75. doi:10.1093/molbev/msh009. PMID 14595095. 
  62. ^ "mtDNA Variation among Greenland Eskimos. The Edge of the Beringian Expansion". Laboratory of Biological Anthropology, Institute of Forensic Medicine, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen, McDonald Institute for Archaeological Research,University of Cambridge, Cambridge, University of Hamburg, Hamburg. 2000. Retrieved 2009-11-22. "The relatively lower coalescence time of the entire haplogroup A2 including the shared sub-arctic branches A2b (Siberians and Inuit) and A2a (Eskimos and Na-Dené) is probably due to secondary expansions of haplogroup A2 from the Beringia area, which would have averaged the overall internal variation of haplogroup A2 in North America." 
  63. ^ "Native American Mitochondrial DNA Analysis Indicates That the Amerind and the Nadene Populations Were Founded by Two Independent Migrations". Center for Genetics and Molecular Medicine and Departments of Biochemistry and Anthropology, Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta, Georgia. Genetics Society of America. Vol 130, 153-162. Retrieved 2009-11-28. "The divergence time for the Nadene portion of the HaeIII np 663 lineage was about 6,000-10,000 years. Hence, the ancestral Nadene migrated from Asia independently and considerably more recently than the progenitors of the Amerinds" 


  • D'Azevedo, Warren L., volume editor. Handbook of North American Indians, Volume 11: Great Basin. Washington, DC: Smithsonian Institution, 1986. ISBN 978-0-16-004581-3.
  • Hann, John H. "The Mayaca and Jororo and Missions to Them", in McEwan, Bonnie G. ed. The Spanish Missions of "La Florida". Gainesville, Florida: University Press of Florida. 1993. ISBN 0-8130-1232-5.
  • Hann, John H. A History of the Timucua Indians and Missions. Gainesville, Florida: University Press of Florida, 1996. ISBN 0-8130-1424-7.
  • Hann, John H. (2003). Indians of Central and South Florida: 1513-1763. University Press of Florida. ISBN 0-8130-2645-8.
  • Heizer, Robert F., volume editor. Handbook of North American Indians, Volume 8: California. Washington, DC: Smithsonian Institution, 1978. ISBN 978-0-16-004574-5.
  • Milanich, Jerald (1999). The Timucua. Wiley-Blackwell. ISBN 0631218645. Retrieved June 11, 2010. 
  • Pritzker, Barry M. A Native American Encyclopedia: History, Culture, and Peoples. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2000. ISBN 978-0-19-513877-1.
  • Steward, Julian H., editor. Handbook of South American Indians, Volume 4: The Circum-Caribbean Tribes. Smithsonian Institution, 1948.
  • Sturtevant, William C., general editor and Bruce G. Trigger, volume editor. Handbook of North American Indians: Northeast. Volume 15. Washington DC: Smithsonian Institution, 1978. ASIN B000NOYRRA.
  • Sturtevant, William C., general editor and Raymond D. Fogelson, volume editor. Handbook of North American Indians: Southeast. Volume 14. Washington DC: Smithsonian Institution, 2004. ISBN 0-16-072300-0.

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