Template:Otheruses Template:Pp-semi

Flag of the Iroquois Confederacy
Total population
approx. 125,000
Template:Smaller[citation needed]
Regions with significant populations
Template:Country data Canada
(southern Quebec, southern Ontario)
Flag of the United States United States
(New YorkWisconsinOklahoma)

Mohawk, Oneida, Onondaga, Cayuga, Seneca, Tuscarora, English, French


Longhouse Religion; Christianity; others

The Iroquois Confederacy or Haudenosaunee Template:Pron-en in English; Akunęhsyę̀niˀ[1] in Tuscarora, Rotinonsionni in Mohawk), (also known as the "League of Peace and Power", the "Five Nations"; the "Six Nations"; or the "People of the Longhouse") is a group of First Nations/Native Americans that originally consisted of five nations: the Mohawk, the Oneida, the Onondaga, the Cayuga, and the Seneca. A sixth tribe, the Tuscarora, joined after the original five nations were formed.

When Europeans first arrived in North America, the Confederacy was based in what is now the northeastern United States primarily in what is referred to today as Upstate New York.

Name Edit

The combined confederacy of the Nations refer to themselves as the Haudenosaunee. Haudenosaunee means "People of the Longhouse," or more accurately, "They Are Building a Long House." The term is said to have been introduced by The Great Peacemaker at the time of the formation of the Confederacy. It implies that the Nations of the Confederacy should live together as families in the same longhouse. Symbolically, the Seneca were the guardians of the western door of the "tribal longhouse" (Kayęˀčarà•nęh[2] in Tuscarora), and the Mohawk were the guardians of the eastern door. The Onondagas, whose homeland was in the center of Haudenosaunee territory, were keepers of the Confederacy's (both literal and figurative) central flame.

The word Iroquois was an exonym bestowed upon the Haudensosaunee by the French[3] and has several potential origins.

  • A possible origin of the name Iroquois is reputed to come from a French version of irinakhoiw, a Huron (Wyandot) name—considered an insult—meaning "Black Snakes" or "real adders". The Iroquois were enemies of the Huron and the Algonquin, who allied with the French, because of their rivalry in the fur trade.
  • The Haudenosaunee (People of the Longhouse) often end their oratory with the phrase hiro kone;[4] hiro translates as "I have spoken", and kone can be translated several ways, the most common being "in joy", "in sorrow", or "in truth". Hiro kone to the French encountering the Haudenosaunee would sound like "Iroquois", pronounced iTemplate:IPAokwe in the French language of the time.
  • Another version is however supported by French linguists such as Henriette Walter and historians such as Dean Snow[5]. According to this account, "Iroquois" would derive from a Basque expression, Hilokoa, meaning the "killer people". This expression would have been applied to the Iroquois because they were the enemy of the local Algonquians, with whom the Basque fishermen were trading. However, because there is no "L" in the Algonquian languages of the Gulf of Saint Lawrence region, the name became "Hirokoa", which is the name the French understood when Algonquians referred to the same pidgin language as the one they used with the Basque. The French then transliterated the word according to their own phonetic rules, thus providing "Iroquois". This is probably unlikely as the diphong "oi" did not produce the "wa" sound it does today in French, the sound would have been closer to "weh" in English.


Pre-contact periodEdit

The members of this Confederacy speak differently than the other speakers of the languages of the same Iroquoian family, suggesting a common historical and cultural origin, but diverging enough so that the languages have become different. Archaeological evidence shows that the Iroquois have lived in the Finger Lakes Region from at least 1000 A.D.[6]


The union of nations was established prior to major European contact, complete with a constitution known as the Gayanashagowa (or "Great Law of Peace"), with the help of a memory device in the form of special beads called wampum that have inherent spiritual value (wampum has been inaccurately compared to money in other cultures). Most anthropologists have traditionally speculated that this constitution was created between the middle 15th and early 17th centuries. However, recent archaeological studies have suggested the accuracy of the account found in oral tradition, which argues that the federation was formed around August 31, 1142, based on a coinciding solar eclipse.[7]

The two prophets, Ayonwentah (frequently thought to be Hiawatha from the Henry Wadsworth Longfellow poem) and Dekanawidah, The Great Peacemaker, brought a message of peace to squabbling tribes. The tribes who joined the League were the Seneca, Onondaga, Oneida, Cayuga and Canyenkehaka (Mohawks). Once they ceased most infighting, they rapidly became one of the strongest forces in seventeenth- and eighteenth-century northeastern North America.

According to legend, an evil Onondaga chieftain named Tadodaho was the last to be converted to the ways of peace by The Great Peacemaker and Ayonwentah and became the spiritual leader of the Haudenosaunee.[8] This event is said to have occurred at Onondaga Lake near Syracuse, New York. The title Tadodaho is still used for the league's spiritual leader, the fiftieth chief, who sits with the Onondaga in council, but is the only one of the fifty chosen by the entire Haudenosaunee people. The current Tadodaho is Sid Hill of the Onondaga Nation.

In Reflections in Bullough's Pond, historian Diana Muir argues that the pre-contact Iriquois were an imperialist, expansionist culture whose possession of the corn/beans/squash agricultural complex enabled them to support a large, warlike population that was in the process of conquering Algonquian peoples. Muir uses archaeological data to argue that the Iroquois expansion onto Algonquian lands was checked by the Algonquian adoption of agriculture enabling them to support populations large enough to include a body of warriors that could hold back the threat of Iroquois conquest.[9]

Beaver WarsEdit


Flag of the Iroquois Confederacy

Haudenosaunee flag created in the 1980s. It is based on the "Hiawatha Wampum Belt ... created from purple and white wampum beads centuries ago to symbolize the union forged when the former enemies buried their weapons under the Great Tree of Peace."[10] It represents the original five nations that were united by the Peacemaker. Hiawatha helped as well in the process of uniting the tribes. The tree symbol in the center represents an Eastern White Pine, the needles of which are clustered in groups of five.[11]

Beginning in 1609, the League engaged in the Beaver Wars with the French and their Iroquoian-speaking Wyandot ("Huron") allies. They also put great pressure on the Algonquian peoples of the Atlantic coast and what is now the boreal Canadian Shield region of Canada and not infrequently fought the English colonies as well. During the seventeenth century, they are also credited with having exterminated[citation needed] the Neutral Indians and Erie Tribe to the west as a way of controlling the fur trade,[citation needed] even though other reasons are often given for these wars.

In 1628, the Mohawks defeated the Mahicans and the Mohawks gained a monopoly in the fur trade with the Dutch at Fort Orange, New Netherland. The Mohawks would not allow Canadian Indians to trade with the Dutch. In 1645, a tentative peace was forged between the Iroquois and the Hurons, Algonquins and French. In 1646, Jesuit missionaries at Sainte-Marie among the Hurons went as envoys to the Mohawk lands to protect the precarious peace of the time. However, Mohawk attitudes towards this peace had soured during the men's journey and they were attacked by a Mohawk party en route. They were taken to the village of Ossernenon (Auriesville, N.Y.), where they were decreed to be set free by the moderate Turtle and Wolf clans. Angered by this, the more hawkish Bear clan killed Jean de Lalande and Isaac Jogues, later commemorated as two of the eight North American Martyrs, on October 18, 1646. In 1649 during the Beaver Wars, the Iroquois attacked and exterminated[citation needed] the Hurons with recently purchased Dutch guns. From 1651 to 1652 the Iroquois attacked the Susquehannocks without success.

The Iroquois were at the height of their power in the early seventeenth century, with a population of about twelve thousand people.[12]

In 1654, the French were invited to establish a trading and missionary settlement at Onondaga. The Mohawks attacked and expelled the French from this trading post in 1655 possibly because of the sudden death of five hundred Indians from an epidemic.

From 1658 to 1663, the Iroquois were at war with the Susquehannock and their Delawares and Province of Maryland allies. In 1663, a large Iroquois invasion force was defeated at the Susquehannock main fort. In 1663, the Iroquois were at war with the Sokoki tribe of the upper Connecticut river. Smallpox struck again and the Iroquois through the effects of disease, famine, and war came close to extermination. In 1664, an Oneida party struck at allies of the Susquehannock on Chesapeake Bay.

In 1664, the French sent the Carignan regiment to New France under Marquis de Tracy with the orders "to carry war even to their firesides in order totally to exterminate them". The Iroquois out of fear signed a peace treaty with the French. In 1666, the French invaded Iroquois territory. The Iroquois avoided battle; the French instead burned their villages.

In 1672, the Iroquois were defeated by a war party of Susquehannock. The Iroquois appealed to the French for support. They asked Governor Frontenac to assist them against the Susquehannock because "it would be a shame for him to allow his children to be crushed, as they saw themselves to be... they not having the means of going to attack their fort, which was very strong, nor even of defending themselves if the others came to attack them in their villages."[13] Some old histories state that the Iroquois defeated the Susquehannock during this time period, but no record of a defeat has been found and it can be stated that no defeat occurred.[14] In 1677, the Iroquois adopted the majority of the Susquehannock.[15]

By 1677, the Iroquois formed an alliance with the English through an agreement known as the Covenant Chain. Together, they battled the French to a standstill who were allied with the Huron, another Iroquoian people, but a historic foe of the Confederacy. The Iroquois colonized the northern shore of Lake Ontario and sent raiding parties westward all the way to Illinois country. The tribes of Illinois were eventually defeated, but it was not by the Iroquois, but rather by the Potawatomis. In 1684, the Iroquois invaded Virginian and Illinois territory again and also unsuccessfully attacked the French fort at St. Louis.

In 1679, the Susquehannock with Iroquois help attacked Maryland's Piscataway and Mattawoman allies. Peace was not reached until 1685.

The Algonquian nations with support from the French drove the Five Nations out of the territories north of Lake Erie and west of present day Cleveland, that had been conquered during the Beaver Wars.[16]

Jacques-Rene de Brisay de Denonville, Marquis de Denonville, Governor of New France from 1685 to 1689, set out with a well organized force to Fort Frontenac where they met with the 50 hereditary sachems of the Iroquois Confederation from the Onondaga council fire, who had been lulled into meeting under a flag of truce. Denonville recaptured the fort for New France and seized, chained, and shipped the 50 Iroquois Chiefs to Marseilles, France to be used as galley slaves. He then ravaged the land of the Seneca. The destruction of the Seneca land infuriated the Iroquois Confederation. On August 4, 1689 Lachine, a small town adjacent to Montreal, was burned to the ground. 1500 Iroquois warriors had been harassing Montreal defenses for many months prior. Denonville was finally exhausted and defeated. His tenure was followed by the return of Frontenac, who would replace Denonville as Governor for the next nine years (1689–1698). Frontenac had been arranging a new plan of attack to mollify the effects of the Iroquois in North America and realized the true danger the imprisonment of the Sachems created. He located the 13 surviving leaders and they returned with him to New France that October, 1698.

During King William's War, the Iroquois were allied with the English. In 1701, the Iroquois concluded the Great Peace of Montreal treaty with the French.

French and Indian WarsEdit

Template:See also After the 1701 peace treaty with the French, the Iroquois remained mostly neutral even though during Queen Anne's War they were involved in some planned attacks against the French. Four delegates of the Iroquoian Confederacy, the "Indian kings", traveled to London in 1710 to meet Queen Anne in an effort to seal an alliance with the British. Queen Anne was so impressed by her visitors that she commissioned their portraits by court painter John Verelst. The portraits are believed to be some of the earliest surviving oil portraits of Aboriginal peoples taken from life.[17]

Sometime during the first quarter of the eighteenth century, the Tuscarora fled north from the British colonization of North Carolina and petitioned to become the sixth nation. This was a non-voting position but placed them under the protection of the Confederacy.

During the French and Indian War, the Iroquois sided with the British against the French and their Algonquian allies, both traditional enemies of the Iroquois. The Iroquois hoped that aiding the British would also bring favors after the war. Practically, few Iroquois joined the galloping, and in the Battle of Lake George, a group of Mohawk and French ambushed a Mohawk-led British column. The British government issued the Royal Proclamation of 1763 after the war, which restricted white settlement beyond the Appalachian Mountains, but this was largely ignored by the settlers and local governments.

American RevolutionEdit

During the American Revolution, many Tuscarora and the Oneida sided with the Americans, while the Mohawk, Seneca, Onondaga and Cayuga remained loyal to Great Britain. This marked the first major split among the Six Nations. Joseph Louis Cook offered his services to the United States and received a Congressional commission as a Lieutenant Colonel- the highest rank held by any Native American during the war.[18] However, after a series of successful operations against frontier settlements, led by the Mohawk war chief Joseph Brant, other war chiefs, and British allies; the United States reacted with vengeance. In 1779, George Washington ordered the Sullivan Campaign led by Col. Daniel Brodhead and General John Sullivan against the Iroquois nations to "not merely overrun, but destroy," the British-Indian alliance. While this action by General Washington helped win the war and earn him the familiar nickname "Father of Our Country", it also earned him another, less flattering moniker. The Iroquois bestowed the name Conotocarious on him, which means "Town Destroyer". The Seneca Chief Cornplanter later said "And to this day when that name is heard, our women look behind them and turn pale, and our children cling close to the necks of their mothers". The name stuck, and to this day, the Iroquois refer to the first president not as George Washington, but as Town Destroyer.[citation needed]

Post-war Edit

After the war, the ancient central fireplace of the confederacy was reestablished at Buffalo Creek. Captain Joseph Brant and a group of Iroquois left New York to settle in Canada. As a reward for their loyalty to the British Crown, they were given a large land grant on the Grand River. Brant's crossing of the river gave the original name to the area: Brant's ford. By 1847, European settlers began to settle nearby and named the village Brantford, Ontario. The original Mohawk settlement was on the south edge of the present-day city at a location favorable for landing canoes. Prior to this land grant, Iroquois settlements did exist in that same area and elsewhere in southern Ontario, extending further north and east (from Lake Ontario eastwards into Quebec around present-day Montreal). Extensive fighting with Huron meant the continuous shifting of territory in southern Ontario between the two groups long before European influences were present.


Melting potEdit

The Iroquois are a melting pot. League traditions allowed for the dead to be symbolically replaced through the "Mourning War", raids intended to seize captives to replace lost compatriots and take vengeance on non-members. This tradition was common to native people of the northeast and was quite different from European settlers' notions of combat.

The Iroquois aimed to create an empire by incorporating conquered peoples and remolding them into Iroquois and thus naturalizing them as full citizens of the tribe. Cadwallader Colden wrote "It has been a constant maxim with the Five Nations, to save children and young men of the people they conquer, to adopt them into their own Nation, and to educate them as their own children, without distinction; These young people soon forget their own country and nation and by this policy the Five Nations make up the losses which their nation suffers by the people they lose in war." By 1668, two-thirds of the Oneida village were assimilated Algonquians and Hurons. At Onondaga there were Native Americans of seven different nations and among the Seneca eleven.[19]


The Iroquois were a mix of farmers, fishers, gatherers, and hunters, though their main diet came from farming. The main crops they farmed were corn, beans and squash, which were called the three sisters and were considered special gifts from the Creator. These crops are grown strategically. The cornstalks grow, the bean plants climb the stalks, and the squash grow beneath, inhibiting weeds and keeping the soil moist under the shade of their broad leaves. In this combination, the soil remained fertile for several decades. The food was stored during the winter, and it lasts for two to three years. When the soil eventually lost its fertility, the Iroquois migrated.

Gathering was the job of the women and children. Wild roots, greens, berries and nuts were gathered in the summer. During spring, maple syrup was tapped from the trees, and herbs were gathered for medicine.

The Iroquois mostly hunted deer but also other game such as wild turkey and migratory birds. Muskrat and beaver were hunted during the winter. Fishing was also a significant source of food because the Iroquois were located near a large river. They fished salmon, trout, bass, perch and whitefish. In the spring the Iroquois netted, and in the winter fishing holes were made in the ice.[20]


Template:Unreferenced section Since they had no writing system, the Iroquois depended upon the spoken word to pass down their history, traditions, and rituals. As an aid to memory, the Iroquois used shells and shell beads. The Europeans called the beads wampum, from wampumpeag, a word used by Indians in the area who spoke Algonquin languages.

The type of wampum most commonly used in historic times was bead wampum, cut from various seashells, ground and polished, and then bored through the center with a small hand drill. The purple and white beads, made from the shell of the quahog clam, were arranged on belts in designs representing events of significance.

Certain elders were designated to memorize the various events and treaty articles represented on the belts. These men could "read" the belts and reproduce their contents with great accuracy. The belts were stored at Onondaga, the capital of the confederacy, in the care of a designated wampum keeper.

Famous wampum belts of the Iroquois include the Hiawatha Wampum, which represents the (original) Five Nations, the spatial arrangement of their individual territories, and the nature of their roles in the Confederacy. The modern Iroquois flag is a rendition of the pattern of the original Hiawatha Wampum belt. The Two Row Wampum, also known as Guswhenta, depicts the agreement made between the Iroquois league and representatives of the Dutch government in 1613, an agreement upon which all subsequent Iroquois treaties with Europeans and Americans have been based. Today, replicas of the Two Row Wampum are often displayed for ceremonial or educational purposes. Other historical wampum belts representing specific agreements or historical occurrences are known to exist, although many have been lost or stolen.

Women in societyEdit

When Americans and Canadians of European descent began to study Iroquois customs in the 18th and 19th centuries, they observed that women assumed a position in Iroquois society roughly equal in power to that of the men. Individual women could hold property including dwellings, horses and farmed land, and their property before marriage stayed in their possession without being mixed with that of their husband's. The work of a woman's hands was hers to do with as she saw fit. A husband lived in the longhouse of his wife's family. A woman choosing to divorce a shiftless or otherwise unsatisfactory husband was able to ask him to leave the dwelling, taking any of his possessions with him. Women had responsibility for the children of the marriage, and children were educated by members of the mother's family. The clans were matrilineal, that is, clan ties were traced through the mother's line. If a couple separated, the woman kept the children. Violence against women by men was virtually unknown.[21]

The chief of a clan could be removed at any time by a council of the mothers of that clan, and the chief's sister was responsible for nominating his successor.[21]

Spiritual beliefsEdit

In the Iroquois belief system was a formless Great Spirit or Creator, from whom other spirits were derived.[citation needed] Spirits animated all of nature and controlled the changing of the seasons. Key festivals coincided with the major events of the agricultural calendar, including a harvest festival of thanksgiving. After the arrival of the Europeans, many Iroquois became Christians, among them Kateri Tekakwitha, a young woman of mixed birth. Traditional religion was revived to some extent in the second half of the 18th century by the teachings of the Iroquois prophet Handsome Lake. [22]

Early form of governmentEdit

The general features of the Confederacy may be summarized in the following propositions: The confederacy, whose founding was historically considered to coincide with a total solar eclipse in 1451, and now considered to coincide with a total solar eclipse in 1142 that more accurately cast a shadow over the region,[23], was a union of Five Nations, composed of Tribes, under one government on the basis of equality; each Nation remaining independent in all manners pertaining to National government. It created a Great Council of Sachems, who were limited in number, equal in rank and authority, and invested with supreme powers over all matters pertaining to the Confederacy. Fifty sachemships were created to be named in perpetuity in central gentes of the fifty tribes; with power in these gentes to fill vacancies, as often as they occurred, by consensus from among their respective members, and with the further power to depose from office for cause. Upon selection of a candidate, the General Council approved, or stated cause for disapproval. The sachems of the Confederacy were also sachems in their respective tribes, and with the chiefs of these tribes formed the Council of each, which was mediator over all matters pertaining to the tribe exclusively. Unanimity in public acts was essential to the Council of the Confederacy. In 1855, Minnie Myrtle observed that no Iroquois treaty was binding unless it was ratified by 75% of the male voters and 75% of the mothers of the nation.[24] In revising Council laws and customs, a consent of two-thirds of the mothers was required.[24] In the General Council the sachems deliberated by Nation, which gave to each Nation a veto over the others. The Council of each Nation had power to convene the General Council; but the latter had no power to convene itself. The General Council was open to the orators of the people for the discussion of public questions; but the Council in session decided issues. The Confederacy had no chief executive magistrate, or official head. The symbolic chief executive, or president, was the titleship of Tadadaho. Experiencing the necessity for a general military commander, they created the office in a dual form, that one might neutralize the other. The two principal war-chiefs were made equal in powers. Equality between the sexes had a strong adherence in the Confederacy,[25] and the women held real power, particularly the power to veto treaties or declarations of war.[24] The members of the Grand Council of Sachems were chosen by the mothers of each clan, and if any leader failed to comply with the wishes of the women his tribe and the Great Law of Peace, he could be demoted by the mothers of his clan,[25][26] a process called "knocking off the horns" which removed the deer antlers emblem of leadership from his headgear and returned him to private life.[24] Councils of the mothers of each tribe were held separately from the men's councils. Men were employed by the women as runners to send word of their decisions to concerned parties, or a woman could appear at the men's council as an orator, presenting the view of the women. Women often took the initiative in suggesting legislation.[24]

Originally, the principal object of the council was to raise up sachems to fill vacancies in the ranks of the ruling body occasioned by death or deposition; but it transacted all other business which concerned the common welfare. Eventually the council fell into three kinds, which may be distinguished as Civil, Mourning, and Religious. The first declared war and made peace, sent and received embassies, entered into treaties with foreign tribes, regulated the affairs of subjugated tribes, as well as other general welfare issues. The second raised up sachems and invested them with office, termed the Mourning Council (Henundonuhseh) because the first of its ceremonies was to lament for the deceased ruler whose vacant place was to be filled. The third was held for the observance of a general religious festival, as an occasion for the confederated tribes to unite under the auspices of a general council in the observance of common religious rites. But since the Mourning Council was attended with many of the same ceremonies, it came, in time, to answer for both. It became the only council they held when the civil powers of the confederacy terminated with the supremacy over them of the state.[26]

Example to the United StatesEdit

The Iroquois nations' political union and democratic government has been credited as one of the influences on the Articles of Confederation and the United States Constitution.[27][28] However, there is heated debate among historians about the importance of their contribution. Historian Jack Rakove[29] writes: "The voluminous records we have for the constitutional debates of the late 1780s contain no significant references to the Iroquois." Researcher Brian Cook writes: "The Iroquois probably held some sway over the thinking of the Framers and the development of the U.S. Constitution and the development of American democracy, albeit perhaps indirectly or even subconsciously... However, the opposition is probably also correct. The Iroquois influence is not as great as [some historians] would like it to be, the framers simply did not revere or even understand much of Iroquois culture, and their influences were European or classical - not wholly New World."[30] However, Cook concedes that much of the heated debate around the influence of Amerindians on the United States Constitution amounts to academic knee-jerk reactions and protectionist turf-wars. Cook further notes "The National Endowment for the Humanities rejected a number of research proposals that dealt with the Iroquois influence theory... [and] Johansen's first book on the Iroquois influence, Forgotten Fathers, was ordered removed from the shelves of the bookstore at Independence Hall."

Although their influence is hotly debated, it is a historical fact that several founding fathers had direct contact with the Iroquois, and prominent figures such as Thomas Jefferson and Benjamin Franklin were closely involved with the Iroquois. Whether this was purely politics for protection or true admiration, perhaps can never be fully determined.

In 2004 the U.S. Government acknowledged the influence of the Iroquois Constitution on the U.S. Framers.[31] The Smithsonian Institution also noted the similarities between the two documents, as well as the differences. One significant difference noted was the inclusion of women in the Iroquois Constitution, one group among many that the framers of the U.S. Constitution did not include.

Member nationsEdit

The first five nations listed below formed the original Five Nations (listed from west to north); the Tuscarora became the sixth nation in 1720.

English name Iroquoian Meaning 17th/18th century location
Seneca Onondowahgah "People of the Great Hill" Seneca Lake and Genesee River</tr> Cayuga Guyohkohnyoh "People of the Great Swamp" Cayuga Lake</tr> Onondaga Onöñda'gega' "People of the Hills" Onondaga Lake</tr> Oneida Onayotekaono "People of Standing Stone" Oneida Lake</tr> Mohawk Kanien'kehá:ka "People of the Great Flint" Mohawk River</tr> Tuscarora1 Ska-Ruh-Reh "Shirt-Wearing People" From North Carolina²


Iroquois Five Nations c. 1650 Iroquois Six Nations c. 1720

Modern populationEdit

The total number of Iroquois today is difficult to establish. About 45,000 Iroquois lived in Canada in 1995.[citation needed] In the 2000 census, 80,822 people in the United States claimed Iroquois ethnicity, with 45,217 of them claiming only Iroquois background. However, tribal registrations in the United States in 1995 numbered about 30,000 in total.

Template:Haudenosaunee populations


Within each of the six nations, people are divided into a number of matrilineal clans. The number of clans varies by nation, currently from three to eight, with a total of nine different clan names.

Current clans
Seneca Cayuga Onondaga Tuscarora Oneida Mohawk</tr> Wolf Wolf Wolf Wolf (Θkwarì•nę) Wolf (Thayú:ni) Wolf (Okwáho)</tr> Bear Bear Bear Bear (Uhčíhręˀ) Bear (Ohkwá:li) Bear (Ohkwá:ri)</tr> Turtle Turtle Turtle Turtle (Ráˀkwihs) Turtle (A'no:wál) Turtle (A'nó:wara)</tr> Snipe Snipe Snipe Snipe (Tawístawis) —</tr> Deer Deer Deer —</tr> Beaver Beaver Beaver (Rakinęhá•ha•ˀ) —</tr> Heron Heron —</tr> Hawk Hawk —</tr> Eel Eel (Akunęhukwatíha•ˀ) —</tr>


File:Six Nations survivors of War of 1812.jpg

The Iroquois have a representative government known as the Grand Council. The Grand Council is the oldest governmental institution still maintaining its original form in North America.[32] Each tribe sends chiefs to act as representatives and make decisions for the whole nation. The number of chiefs has never changed.

  • 14 Onondaga
  • 10 Cayuga
  •   9 Oneida
  •   9 Mohawk
  •   8 Seneca
  •   0 Tuscarora

Modern communitiesEdit

Prominent people of Iroquois ancestryEdit


  1. Rudes, B. Tuscarora English Dictionary Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1999
  2. Rudes, B. Tuscarora English Dictionary Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1999
  3. Template:Citebook
  4. Template:Cite web
  5. Template:Cite web
  6. Jennings, p.43
  7. Fields and Mann, American Indian Culture and Research Journal, vol. 21, #2
  8. The History of Onondage'ga'
  9. Muir, Diana, Reflections in Bullough's Pond, University Press of New England
  10. Template:Cite web
  11. Template:Cite web
  12. Francis Parkman[citation needed]
  13. Jennings, p. 135
  14. Jennings, p. 135
  15. Jennings, p.160
  16. Jennings, p. 111
  17. Template:Cite web
  18. Oneida Nation of New York Conveyance of Lands Into Trust pg 3-159, Department of Indian Affairs
  19. Jennings, p. 95
  20. Template:Citation
  21. 21.0 21.1 Template:Cite web
  22. Wallace, Anthony (April 12, 1972). Death and Rebirth of the Seneca. Vintage. ISBN 978-0394716992. 
  23. Template:Cite journal
  24. 24.0 24.1 24.2 24.3 24.4 Wagner, Sally Roesch (1993). "The Iroquois Influence on Women's Rights". in Sakolsky, Ron; Koehnline, James. Gone To Croatan: Origins of North American Dropout Culture. Brooklyn, New York: Autonomedia. pp. 240–247. ISBN 0936756926. Retrieved on 2009-03-20. 
  25. 25.0 25.1 Zinn, Howard (2005). A People's History of the United States: 1492-present. Harper Perennial Modern Classics. ISBN 0-06-083865-5.
  26. 26.0 26.1 Morgan, Lewis H. (1907). Ancient Society. Chicago: Charles H. Kerr & Company. pp. 130–131, 138–139. 
  27. Template:Cite web
  28. Armstrong, Virginia Irving. I Have Spoken: American History Through the Voices of the Indians. Pocket Books. p. 14. SBN 671-78555-9. 
  29. Template:Cite web
  30. Iroquois Confederacy and the Influence Thesis
  31. Template:Cite web
  32. Jennings, p.94


  • "The Ordeal of the Longhouse", by Daniel K. Richter
  • The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, by Mark Twain
  • For a detailed account of Iroquois actions during the American Revolution, see: Williams, Glenn F. Year of the Hangman: George Washington's Campaign Against the Iroquois. Yardley: Westholme Publishing, 2005.
  • Jennings, Francis, The Ambiguous Iroquois Empire, 1984, ISBN 0393017192
  • Michelson, G. A Thousand Words of Mohawk Ottawa: National Museums of Canada 1973
  • Wright, Ronald. (2005) "Stolen Continents: 500 Years of Conquest and Resistance in the Americas." Mariner Books. ISBN 0618492402; ISBN 978-0618492404
  • Wu Ming (2007) "Manituana" A novel revolving around Joseph Brant and the American Revolution
  • Sloan, De Villo. The Crimsoned Hills of Onondaga: Romantic Antiquarians and the Euro-American Invention of Native American Prehistory. Amherst, NY: Cambria Press, 2008.

See also Edit

External links Edit


Template:Iroquois Confederacyar:إيروكواس zh-min-nan:Iroquois br:Haudenosaunee bg:Ирокези ca:Confederació Iroquesa cy:Iroquois da:Irokeserføderationen de:Irokesen el:Ιροκουά es:Confederación Iroquesa eo:Haudenosaunee fr:Iroquois ko:이로쿼이 연방 hr:Iroquois Indijanci it:Irochesi he:אירוקווי lt:Irokėzai mk:Ирокези nl:Irokezen ja:イロコイ連邦 no:Irokesere nn:Irokesarføderasjonen pl:Irokezi pt:Iroqueses ru:Ирокезы sk:Irokézska liga sl:Irokezi fi:Irokeesit sv:Irokeser vec:Irochixi zh:易洛魁聯盟

Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.