Indigenous population of America: size, culture and religion

Indians who belong to a separateAmerican race, are the native population of America. They have inhabited the territory of the entire New World since the beginning of time and live there until now. Despite countless genocides, colonizations and other persecutions against them, which were made by Europeans, they occupy a very significant place in each of the states of this part of the world. Below in the article, we will consider what is and in what numbers the native population of America is estimated. Photos of various sub-races and representatives of various tribes will make it possible to understand this topic more clearly.

Habitat and abundance

The aborigines of the New World lived here in prehistorictimes, but in our days, in fact, little has changed for them. They unite in separate communities, continue to preach their religious dogma and follow the traditions of their ancestors. Some representatives of the native American race are assimilated with Europeans and completely adopt their way of life. Thus, it is possible to meet a pure Indian or a half-breed in any country of the northern, southern or central part of Novaya Zemlya. The total "Indian" population of America is 48 million people. Of these, 14 million live in Peru, 10.1 million in Mexico, 6 million in Bolivia. The next countries are Guatemala and Ecuador - 5.4 and 3.4 million people respectively. 2.5 million Indians can be found in the US, but in Canada there are half of them - 1.2 million. Strangely enough, in the expanses of Brazil and Argentina, so huge powers, the Indians remained not so much already. The indigenous population of America in these places is already estimated in the thousands and amounts to 700,000 and 600,000 people, respectively.

indigenous people of america

History of the appearance of tribes

According to scientists, representativesAmericanic race, despite all their differences from any other known to us, migrated to their continent from Eurasia. For many millennia (approximately 70-12 millennia BC), the Indians came to the New World along the so-called Beringian bridge, on the site of which the Bering Strait now stands. Then it was not the indigenous population of America that was gradually mastering a new continent, beginning with Alaska and ending with the southern shores of present-day Argentina. After America was mastered by them, each separate tribe began to develop in its direction. The general trends that they observed were as follows. The Indians of South America honored the maternal race. The inhabitants of the Northern part of the continent were content with the patriarchy. In the Caribbean tribes, there was a trend towards a class society.

 indigenous people of North America

A few words about biology

From the genetic point of view, the indigenous populationAmerica, as already mentioned above, is not such for these lands. The ancestral home of the Indians is considered by scientists to be Altai, from where they left their colonies in distant, distant times, in order to master new lands. The fact is that 25 thousand years ago from Siberia to America it was possible to reach by land, moreover, probably, people considered all these lands as a single continent. So the inhabitants of our territories gradually settled along the northern part of Eurasia, and then moved to the Western Hemisphere, where they turned into Indians. The researchers came to this conclusion due to the fact that in the Altai aborigines, the Y-chromosome type is identical in its mutations with the chromosome of the American Indian.

 America's population

Northern tribes

The tribes of Aleuts and Eskimos, who occupysubarctic zone of the continent, we will not touch, because this is a completely different racial family. The indigenous population of North America occupied the territory of present Canada with the United States, from eternal glaciers to the Gulf of Mexico. There are many different cultures that we now list:

  • The northern Indians, who settled in the upper part of Canada, are Algonquian and Athapask tribes. They hunted a deer-caribou, and also engaged in fishing.
  • North-western tribes - Tlingit, Haida, Salish, Wakashi. Engaged in fishing, as well as sea hunting.
  • The Californian Indians are well-known collectors of acorns. They also engaged in ordinary hunting and fishing.
  • Indians Woodland occupied the entire eastern part of the modern US. The indigenous population of North America here was represented by tribes screaming, Algonquin, Iroquois. These people traded in settled agriculture.
  • The Indians of the Great Plains are well-known hunters onwild buffalo. There are uncountable number of tribes, among which we will name only a few: caddo, crou, oseiji, mandana, arikara, kyova, apache, uichita and many others.
  • In the south of North America, the Pueblo tribes lived,Navajo and Pima. These lands were considered the most developed, since the aborigines were engaged in agriculture, using the method of artificial irrigation, and concurrently bred livestock.

 indigenous culture

The Caribbean

It is believed that the indigenous populationCentral America was the most developed. It was in this part of the continent that the most intractable slash-and-burn and irrigated farming systems developed at that time. Of course, the tribes of this region used irrigation widely, which allowed them to be content not with the simplest cereal crops, but with the fruits of such plants as maize, legumes, sunflower, pumpkin, agave, cocoa, cotton. They also grew tobacco. The indigenous population of Latin America on these lands also engaged in cattle breeding (similarly the Indians lived in the Andes). In the course of this, there were mainly lamas. Also, we note that here they began to master metallurgy, and the primitive communal system was already passing to the class structure, becoming a slave state. Among the tribes that lived in the Caribbean, you can call the Aztecs, Mishtecs, Maya, Purpecha, Totonaki and Zapotec.

indigenous people of South America

South America

In comparison with the Aztec tribes, Totonaki andother, the indigenous population of South America was not so highly developed. The only exception is the Inca Empire, which was located in the Andes and was inhabited by the same-named Indians. On the territory of modern Brazil lived tribes that were engaged in the hoe type of farming, and also hunted local birds, mammals. Among them you can call Arawak, Tupi-Guarani. The territory of Argentina was occupied by horse hunters on the guanaco. On the Tierra del Fuego lived the tribes of Yamana, she and Alakaluph. They led a nomadic way of life, very primitive in comparison with their relatives, and engaged in fishing.

Empire of the Incas

This is the greatest union of Indians, whichexisted in the 11th and 13th centuries on the territory of present-day Colombia, Peru and Chile. Prior to the arrival of Europeans, local residents already had their own administrative division. The empire consisted of four parts - Chinchaysuyu, Kolasuyu, Antisuiu and Kuntisuyu, and each of them, in turn, was divided into provinces. The Inca Empire had its own statehood and laws, which were mostly represented as punishments for certain atrocities. The control system of the country they had, most likely, despotic-totalitarian. In this state there was also an army, there was a certain social order, over which the lower layers of it were controlled. The main achievement of the Incas is their giant highways. The roads they built on the slopes of the Andes, in length reached 25 thousand kilometers. To move around them, Lamas were used as pack animals.

indigenous people of Latin America

Traditions and cultural development

The culture of the indigenous population of America ismainly their languages ​​of communication, many of which are still completely decrypted is not possible. The fact is that each tribe had not just its own dialect, but its autonomous language, which sounded only in oral speech, did not have writing at the same time. The first alphabet in America appeared only in 1826 under the leadership of the leader of the Cherokee tribe, the Indian Sequoia. Until then, the aborigines of the continent used pictographic signs, and if they had to communicate with representatives of other settlements, then they used gestures, gestures and facial expressions.

Deities of the Indians

Despite the huge number of tribes thatlived in different climatic conditions and regions, the beliefs of the indigenous population of America were very simple, and they can be combined into one. Most of the tribes of North America believed that the deity is a kind of plane that is far away in the ocean. According to their legends, their ancestors lived on this plane. And those who committed a sin or showed imprudence fell from it into a gaping void. In Central America, the deities were given the appearance of animals, most often birds. Wise tribes of the Incas often considered their gods prototypes of people who created the world and everything that is in it.

Modern religious views of the Indians

Nowadays, the Native Americansthe continent no longer adheres to those religious traditions that were characteristic of their ancestors. Most of the population of North America now professes Protestantism and its varieties. Indians and Mestizos who live in Mexico and the southern part of the continent, almost all adhere to strict Catholicism. Some of them become Jews. Only a few are still based on the views of their ancestors, and they keep this knowledge in great secrecy from the white population.

 beliefs of the indigenous population of America

Mythological aspect

Initially, all the tales, legends and other folkworks that belonged to the Indians, could tell us about their life, about life, about the ways of obtaining food. These peoples sang birds, wild mammals and predators, their brothers and parents. A little later, mythology acquired a somewhat different character. The Indians had myths about the creation of the world, which are very similar to our biblical. It is noteworthy that in many stories of American indigenous peoples there is a certain deity - a Woman with braids. It is at the same time the personification of life and death, food and war, land and water. She does not have a name, but references to her power are found in almost all ancient Indian sources.


We have already mentioned above that the so-calledThe Indian population of America is 48 million, according to official figures. These are the people who are registered in their country, who belong to the colonial society. If we take into account those Indians who still live in tribes, then the figure will be much greater. According to unofficial data, there are more than 60,000 representatives of the native American race in America, who are found both in Alaska and in Tierra del Fuego.

Related news

Indigenous population of America: size, culture and religion Indigenous population of America: size, culture and religion Indigenous population of America: size, culture and religion Indigenous population of America: size, culture and religion Indigenous population of America: size, culture and religion Indigenous population of America: size, culture and religion Indigenous population of America: size, culture and religion Indigenous population of America: size, culture and religion Indigenous population of America: size, culture and religion Indigenous population of America: size, culture and religion Indigenous population of America: size, culture and religion