Recommended Native American Readings

Native Americans were the first people to live on the continental United States, the first people that European settlers encountered when they “discovered” America, and ever since those early days, Native American culture has fascinated the world to a large extent. People want to know about everything – their spirituality, their languages, their tribes:

  • Native American Spirituality: This is an extremely informative guide to Native American spirituality in all its forms. It lists the belief system of all Native American tribes.
  • Summary of Native American Religions: This summary delves into the very structure of Native American religion, how the belief system works, and gives specifics on a few of the more well-known tribes like the Dakota or the Sioux.
  • Native Languages: A guide to every Native American language spoken. The list is alphabetical and leads to a more detailed description, including a history of the language, where it was spoken and which tribe spoke it.
  • The North American Indian: Here is an online photo archive for E. S. Curtis’ 1900-era collection of images of Native American life. The collection is one of the most controversial representations of Native Americans to date. It is over 20 volumes long.
  • First Nation Histories: This group has been working for years to develop a comprehensive history of all major Native American tribes. They have compiled information such as their location, population, culture, language, and even their sub-tribes.
  • Encyclopedia Smithsonian: An extensive reading list for various Native American subjects such as their clothing, speech, how they cooked their food, and even their relationship with buffalo and horses.
  • Indian Superstitions and Legends: A nine-section guide to Native American legends and superstitions.
  • NativeTech: A comprehensive guide, complete with illustrations, to Native American styles of dresses. The guide is organized by region and tribe.
  • Guide To Native American Religions: Here’s an extensive guide to Native American religions that serves as an article database as well as a hub that keeps track of other sites and even government documents. It even contains search tips to make searching databases easier.
  • Native North America: Another guide to Native American tribes, this resource includes tribes indigenous to Canada. It also lists references.
  • PubMed Archive: A very detailed guide to how smallpox affected Native American tribes.
  • First Americans: Comprehensive, interactive guide to five Native American tribes that includes information on their houses, food, and clothes, as well as other things.
  • Native American Women: A gallery of Native American women going about their daily lives.
  • Encyclopedia Mythica: Encyclopedia of Native American myths organized by specific tribe.
  • Dakota Culture Wiki: A wiki devoted solely to all aspects of Dakota culture, including entries on their most famous people and the Dakota words for different colors.
  • Navajo Code Talkers: A guide that explains how vital a role Navajo “code talkers” played during World War II.
  • Trail of Tears Research: The Sequoyah Research Center put together a guide to the “Trail of Tears” which refers to the relocation movement of multiple Native American tribes westward.
  • Native American Legends: Dream catcher: A guide to the Lakota legend that spawned one of the most recognized symbols of Native American people in the dream catcher.
  • Native American Sweat Lodge: A detailed history and guide to the uses of the sweat lodge.
  • Native American Masks: Short guide to Native American masks and which tribes made them.
  • Animal Totems: A fascinating guide to the animals used as totems for Native American people. A similar resource offers insight into the rituals associated with totems.
  • Vision Quests: Explanation of vision quests and their impact on Native American culture.

Native American culture is fascinating for many reasons, and the more research you do, the more fascinating it becomes. The rituals and beliefs possess an element of sacred beauty which is truly magnetic and enlightening.