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Southeast: Precontact life ways, changes during contact and colonialism

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The landscape comprised various rolling hills with key river systems which are predominantly under forests, notably the oak trees variety and the hickory. The other portion comprised the Appalachian Mountains which includes contemporary days eastern Tennessee, northwards towards Georgia, as well as the western Carolinas (Hudson, 2002). These regions have elevated peaks with intensely etched valleys and hardwood forests vegetations which are characteristic of more-northerly areas. The region was densely populated during pre contact period and majority of the groups dwelled within the piedmont. Given that the zone was full of forests, numerous mountains and an extensive river valley system, the land was fertile enough for farmland.

Hence, the native groups were accomplished farmers who planted all year round inside the valleys (Oswalt, 2008). However, the Cherokee group concentrated more on hunting since the forests had a wide variety of animals, in particular the deer, raccoons, black bears, otters, squirrels, and rabbits. Those in Florida hunted quails, turtles, wild turkeys, partridges, together with alligators, and seasonal pigeons and geese. They hunted using a variety of locally made implements like bows, arrows, and spears.

They used both salt waters and fresh waters systems to acquire a massive pool of fish such as mussels and crayfish. The fishing equipments comprised weirs or underwater corrals, dip nets as well as dragnets and this was used together with hooks and long lines. In some regions, botanical-poisons were applied in ponds in order to harvest massive numbers of fish. Furthermore, the coastal southeastern groups collected oysters, sea clams, mussels, and the crabs (Oswalt, 2008). Even though Cherokee territory was mainly within the Appalachian Mountains, they fought continuously with the Creeks for hunting areas.

They combined the hunting for game resources with harvesting of wild plant and farming. However, those in southern Florida took on the subtropical maritime lifestyles, especially fishing. During pre contact period, dogs were the only domesticated animals among the southeastern groups, and were extensively used for hunting and security. Corn was the key crop grown and traded with numerous varieties such as little corn, the flint, and dent (Aloian and Kalman, 2005). They normally baked the corn while some were roasted or boiled to form succotash.

A typical dish comprised stewed corn with beans, while the hominy which is presently referred to as cornmeal and was made in wooden mortars constructed with bulky upright but partially hollowed logs.

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preview essay on Southeast: Precontact life ways, changes during contact and colonialism
  • Pages: 9 (2250 words)
  • Document Type: Essay
  • Subject: English
  • Level: Undergraduate
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