Published on September 17, 2010 by Alice
dna testing, dna ancestry testing, ancestry, genealogy, indian genealogy records, paternity testing, turquoise jewelry, native american jewelry
Delaware Indian Family
The name Lenni Lenape, or Leni-Lenape, pronounced len-ee len-AH-pay, means â€œreal peopleâ€ or â€œpeople of the standard.â€ The tribe also is known simply as Lenape, â€œthe people.â€ An alternate tribal name, common in history books, is Delaware. The latter name, given by the EngÂlish, comes from the name of the river where many of the Lenape originally lived. The river itself was named after Thomas West, Lord De La Warr, the second goverÂnor of Virginia, in whose honor the state of Delaware is named.
The Lenape, sometimes called the Delaware ConfederÂacy, consisted of numerous Algonquian-speaking bands who maintained distinct identities. The northern bands spoke the dialects known as Munsee (or Munsi, Muncie, or Muncey); the southern bands spoke the Unami dialect. A third dialect of coastal groups later came to be called Unalachtigo. Other ALGONQUIANS, such as the NANTIÂCOKE, called the Lenape â€œGrandfatherâ€ in their various dialects, because they considered Lenape territory the origÂinal homeland of all Algonquians.
The Lenape, classified as NORTHEAST INDIANS, placed their villages along river valleys. Lenape villages were dominated by one of three clans: tukwsi-t, the wolf; pukuwanku, the turtle; and peleâ€™, the turkey. Each village was surrounded by sovereign hunting lands and ï¬elds of corn, beans, and squash. Houses were domed wigwams similar in style to IROQUOIS (HAUDENOSAUNEE) long-houses.
An important ceremony of the Lenape is known as the Big House (Gaâ€™mwi), lasting 12 days and involving a log structure symbolizing the universe, the lighting of a new sacred ï¬re, and offerings to Misinghalikun, the legÂendary Guardian of the Game, for the purpose of renewal, good fortune, and tribal unity.
The Lenape were forced to cede their lands and migrate time and again on account of the increasing number of non-Indian settlers. At one time, different bands of these people held territory in what now is New York, New JerÂsey, Pennsylvania, and Delaware.
The Dutch ï¬rst entered Lenape homelands in the 1600s from the Hudson River. The Dutch were interested in fur trade with the Indians. To the south, traders from Sweden lived in Lenape country along Delaware Bay, startÂing in 1638. During this early period, many Lenape moved inland and settled along the Susquehanna River.
In 1664, England took control of the entire region. English settlers, hungry for more and more land, pushed farther and farther westward. By the mid-1700s, Lenape were beginning to settle along the Ohio River in Ohio, then in Indiana, believing the Europeans and their Euroamerican descendants would never settle as far west as Ohio.
But settlers kept coming: next the Americans, who pushed into the Old Northwest around the Great Lakes. In the late 1700s, some Lenape moved to Missouri for a time, then to Texas. By 1835, many from this group had resettled in Kansas in the northern part of the original Indian Territory. In 1867, when whites broke their promises and began to settle west of the Mississippi
River in great numbers, most of the Lenape relocated to the southern part of the Indian Territory, which is now the state of Oklahoma. In the meantime, other Lenape had chosen to live in Canada.
Early Relations with Colonists
In the course of this long and complicated story of migration, in which the Lenape lived in at least 10 difÂferent states and signed 45 different treaties with the whites, the tribe made its mark on American history. They were involved in many key events.
One famous early incident is the selling of Manhattan Island, now the central borough of New York City. First, the Canarsee band from Brooklyn tried to sell the island to the Dutch. But it was really the Manhattan band who controlled this territory. In 1626, they made the deal with Peter Minuit for 60 guildersâ€™ (24 dollarsâ€™) worth of trade goodsâ€”that is, beads, trinkets, and tools.
Some scholars believe that the Manhattan Indians were part of the Wappinger Confederacy and should be classiï¬ed as WAPPINGER rather than as Lenape. In any case, the Lenape and Wappinger both spoke the AlgonÂquian language and were closely related. The Lenape generally lived west of the Hudson River and the WapÂpinger east of it.
The Manhattan did not really believe that they were selling the land forever. To them no one â€œownedâ€ land; it belonged to all people. Rather, they thought they were selling the right to use the land, more like a lease. Lenape have a saying about the sale of Manhattan Island: â€œThe great white man wanted only a little, little land, on which to raise greens for his soup, just as much as a bulÂlockâ€™s hide would cover. Here we first might have observed his deceitful spirit.â€
Other important historical events involving the Lenape were the treaties of friendship signed in 1682â€“83 with William Penn, the Quaker founder of Pennsylvania, the ï¬rst treaties Native Americans ever signed with EuroÂpeans. Of the early colonial leaders, William Penn was among the most fair in his dealings with Native AmeriÂcans, protecting their rights to land as well as their freeÂdom of religion. A famous Lenape chief at these meetings was Tamanend. Because he was so effective in his dealings with non-Indians, in 1786 his name was taken, in the form of Tammany, as the name of a politiÂcal club important in New York history.
Pennâ€™s example and the respect whites held for TamaÂnend did not prevent others from massacring a band of Moravian Christian Lenape at Gnadenhutten, Ohio, in 1782, because of a stolen plate.
The Lenape are also famous as the ï¬rst tribe to sign a treaty with the U.S. governmentâ€”at Fort Pitt in 1778 during the American Revolution.
Wars Involving the Lenni Lenape
Some Lenape warriors ï¬rst rebelled against the Dutch in 1641, when settlersâ€™ livestock destroyed some cornï¬elds of the Raritan Indians, a band living on Staten Island at the mouth of the Hudson River. Willem Kieft, governor-general of New Netherland at the time, placed a bounty on Raritan heads and scalps, making it proï¬table for Dutch settlers to kill local Indians.
An incident called the Pavonia Massacre occurred two years later: Dutch soldiers tortured and murdered a band of Wappinger who sought protection among the Dutch from the MOHAWK. After the incident, many Algonquians of the region, Lenape and Wappinger alike, began raiding outlying settlements. By attacking and burning Indian vilÂlages, Kieftâ€™s armies crushed the uprising in a year.
The Lenape and Wappinger also battled the Dutch under Peter Stuyvesant, the next governor-general, in the so-called Peach Wars, starting in 1655, when an Indian woman was killed by a farmer for picking peaches from his orchard. After warriors had taken revenge against the farmer, Stuyvesant not only raided Lenape and WapÂpinger villages and burned their homes and crops, but also took children hostages, threatening to kill them so that their fathers would not ï¬ght.
In later conï¬‚icts, the western Lenape sided with the French in the French and Indian wars of 1689â€“1763. They again fought the British in Pontiacâ€™s Rebellion of 1763â€“64. A shaman known as Delaware Prophet played an important role in the conï¬‚ict. In 1762, he began preaching to the Indians of the Old Northwest, urging them to make peace among themselves, to give up alcoÂhol, and to live pure lives according to traditional Indian ways. His message helped inspire and unite the tribes who fought together against the British under the OTTAWA Pontiac the following year. Some Lenape later sided with the British in the American Revolution of 1775â€“83. They also supported the MIAMI and SHAWNEE in Little Turtleâ€™s War of 1790â€“94 and Tecumsehâ€™s RebelÂlion of 1809â€“11.
There is a traditional history of the Lenni Lenape in the form of pictographs (picture writing) supposedly engraved on reeds, called the Walam Olum, or â€œRed Score,â€ which speaks of legends and early migrations. As the Walam Olum says, â€œLong ago the fathers of the Lenape were in the land of spruce pines . . . A great land and a wide land was the east land. A land without snakes, a rich land, a pleasant land.â€ (Some scholars have
The LuiseÃ±o lived in the area of the San Luis Rey River near the Paciï¬c Ocean in present-day California. The name LuiseÃ±o, pronounced loo-ee-SAY-nyo, is taken from that of the Mission San Luis Rey de Francia. Those Indians living directly to the north, also in coastal regions, who became known as JuaneÃ±oâ€”that name taken from the Mission San Juan Capistranoâ€”are conÂsidered to have originally been one people with the LuiseÃ±o. The two groups have also been referred to as the Ghecham, Kecham, or Gaitchim from the Native name for the missions. The LuiseÃ±o Native name is questioned the authenticity of the Walam Olum because the originals did not survive beyond the 19th century for veriï¬cation.)
Contemporary Lenni Lenape
The Delaware Tribe of Western Oklahoma presently holds trust lands in southeastern Oklahoma. The Lenni Lenape (or Eastern Delaware) live in northeastern OklaÂhoma. Munsee descendants share the Stockbridge-MunÂsee Reservation near Bowler, Wisconsin; others make up the Munsee Delaware Indian Tribe in Ohio; others live in Ontario as part of the Moravian of the Thames and Muncey of the Thames bands and among the Iroquois of the Six Nations Reserve. In New Jersey, two bands, the Native Delaware Indians and the Nanticoke Lenni Lenape Indians (with the Nanticoke), maintain tribal identity. A group known as the Delaware-Muncie Tribe are centered in Pomono, Kansas. The Delaware of Idaho operate out of Boise. Lenni Lenape descendants also live in the Allentown, Pennsylvania, region, the location of the Lenni Lenape Historical Society and Museum of Indian Culture. The museum holds an annual Roasting Ears of Corn Festival in late August that involves tradiÂtional foods, music, dancing, and arts and crafts. In 1992, the Delaware Nation Grand Council of North America was incorporated in Ohio to foster unity among all Lenni Lenape. In 2002, the Grand Council and tribal groups negotiated with the National Park Service for the repatriation of human remains found on the bank of the Delaware River in Bucks County, Pennsylvania, as granted to tribes in the Native American Grave ProtecÂtion and Repatriation Act (NAGPRA) of 1990.
Source: The Encyclopedia of Native American Tribes by CARL WALDMAN