Topic 1.2 - Native American Societies Before European Contact

land bridge

a strip of land that connects two larger landmasses, enabling migration of plants and animals to new areas. (this is now submerged under the Bering Sea.)


From A.D. 300 to 800, this highly developed civilization built large cities in the rainforests of the Yucat√°n Peninsula (present-day Guatemala, Belize, and southern Mexico).


From Central Mexico, this native population developed a powerful empire. The Capital, Tenochtitl√°n, had a population of about 200,000, equivalent in population to the largest cities of Europe.


A Native American people who built a notable civilization in western South America in the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries. The center of their empire was in present-day Peru. Francisco Pizarro of Spain conquered this empire.

corn (maize)

staple crop that allowed for a population boom of the Native Americans. growing this crop led Native American societies to become less nomadic.


These are homes that were typically seen in the Northeast Settlements, this house resided with multiple families of the mother's lineage. these houses were up to 200 feet long.


The American Indians had 20 language families and 400 distinct languages. This tribe in the Northeast was one of the largest.


One of the largest language families constituting the Native American languages. Centered on the Great Plains.

Iroquois Confederation

Several tribes lived together forming a powerful political union. This powerful union later battled rival American Indians as well as Europeans.

Woodland mound builders

Cherokee and the Lumbee were many descendants, they built timber and bark lodgings along the rivers.

Hohokam, Anasazi, and Pueblos

A native population in New Mexico and Arizona. Many of these people in these tribes lived in caves, under cliffs, and in multistoried buildings.


A culture that was found in the Ohio valley into new york. It consisted of hunting and farming.