How do historians study the past?
They study artifacts but focus more of their attention on written documents.
The distinction between the study of humans by archaeologist and the study of humans by historians is often denoted by the
invention of writing.
Though ancient Americans lacked writing skills, they
shared a common spoken language.
How do modern archaeologists study ancient peoples?
Modern archaeologists combine a variety of approaches.
What was the reason for the early, prolonged absence of humans in the Western Hemisphere?
North and South America had become detached from the continent of Pangea.
How did the Wisconsin glaciation allow hunters to reach the Western Hemisphere?
The Wisconsin glaciation created the wide land bridge of Beringia.
Although experts debate the exact time people began migrating to North America, the first migrants probably arrived
around 15,000 BP.
When did Paleo-Indians reach the southern tip of America and complete their expansion into the Western Hemisphere?
One thousand years after they first migrated to the Western Hemisphere.
What do the artifacts that have survived from the Paleo-Indian era suggest about the first Americans?
They specialized in hunting big mammals.
About 11,000 years ago, the Paleo-Indians faced a major crisis because
the large animals they hunted had difficulty adapting to a warming climate.
How did Native American cultures adapt to the extinction of big game?
Paleo-Indians began foraging wild plant foods.
When Europeans arrived in 1492, Native American cultures were
so varied that they defy easy and simple description.
What does the term Archaic describe?
Hunting and gathering cultures that descended from Paleo-Indians.
Which of the following is an accurate description of Archaic Indians?
Archaic Indians hunted smaller game with traps, nets, and hooks.
How did archaeologists determine that Folsom hunters and giant bison were contemporaries?
They discovered a Folsom point lodged between the ribs of a giant bison.
Archaic Indians who hunted the bison herds of the Great Plains were
nomads who moved constantly with their prey.
The Archaic Indians in the Great Basin inhabited a region with
great environmental diversity.
What was the main source of food for Archaic peoples inhabiting the Great Basin?
Why did native peoples in California remain hunters and gatherers for hundreds of years after Europeans arrived in the Western Hemisphere?
Both land and ocean provided an abundant food supply.
Archaeological evidence indicates that the California Chumash culture was characterized by
a notable amount of conflict among villages.
What caused much of the warfare among Archaic Northwest peoples?
Conflicts over access to good fishing sites.
What environmental factor shaped the cultures of the Archaic peoples of the Eastern Woodland?
Early Woodland Indians obtained food by
How did the diet and culture of Woodland peoples change around 4000 BP?
Woodland cultures adopted limited forms of plant growing.
Why did nomadic peoples shun the use of pottery?
Pots were too heavy to carry around.
How did agriculture change Archaic cultures?
It encouraged the gradual establishment of permanent settlements.
Why did Archaic cultures in the Southwest adopt agriculture?
The supply of wild plant food was highly unreliable.
When did corn become a food crop for Southwestern cultures?
Ancient Southwestern Indians became experts in the conservation of
What feature characterized the settlements of the Mogollon culture?
Why did Hohokam settlements utilize irrigation canals?
Canals allowed planting and harvesting crops twice a year.
Multistory cliff dwellings and pueblos are residential structures associated with the
The Anasazi culture disappeared due to
a drought that lasted more than fifty years.
Burial mounds and chiefdoms are associated with which ancient Americans?
Why do archaeologists believe that the first ancient Woodland mound builders were organized into cheifdoms?
The complexity of the mounds suggests that one chief commanded labor from the others.
What does the analysis of artifacts in burial mounds reveal about the Hopewell chiefdom?
Burial was reserved for the most important members of society.
Scholars speculate that Hopewell culture declined because
farming and new weapons made central authority unnecessary.
Experts believe that the Cahokians used woodhenges for
What is a prudent estimate of the population of Native Americans in North America at the time of Columbus’s arrival in the New World?
Although the two regions had roughly the same population in 1492, the population density of North America was
much less than that of England.
Eastern Woodland peoples around the time of Columbus’s arrival in 1492 clustered into which three major groups?
Algonquian, Iroquoian, and Muskogean peoples
The League of Five Nations, which remained powerful well into the eighteenth century, was formed as
a confederation of the Iroquoian tribes for the purposes of war and diplomacy.
The Athapascan tribes – mainly Apache and Navajo – were
skillful warriors who preyed on the sedentary pueblo Indians.
What was a similarity among the many tribes that inhabited North America at the dawn of the European colonization?
Their cultures had developed in relation to their local natural environments.
Evidence indicates that before 1492, Native Americans
practiced human sacrifice.
How did Native Americans relate to the natural environment?
They changed the environment in a variety of ways that served their own interests.
In AD 1492, the empire of the Mexica
encompassed up to 25 million people.
Which group held the most exalted position in Mexican society?
The Mexica used an extensive tribute system to redistribute wealth from
the poor to the rich
Spanish conquerors exploited which weakness of the Mexican empire?
The empire’s subjects did not see the Mexica as legitimate or fair rulers.