The greatest European contribution to Native American society was arguably the horse. Its effects, especially on western tribes, were truly revolutionary. It altered their material lives, rearranged their relations with their environments, and fed a burst of power and affluence. Ironically, over time horses contributed also to American Indians’ mounting difficulties as the tide of white settlement rolled over them.
(Atlantic Ocean to the Mississippi River)
Key Groups: Adena (500 BC), Hopewell (100 BC)
Religion and Culture: Known as mound builders because they buried the dead in large earth mounds, these groups lived in small farming villages, which were likely run by leaders of clans (relatives). The villages grew and became increasingly complex, building trade networks and creating elaborate artwork using materials from as far away as the Gulf of Mexico and the Great Lakes. Adena culture was...