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[Native American burial or memorial ceremony with man standing by shelter with bundles of bones, friends and relatives of the dead, and lodge in background, New France (Canada)]

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[Native American burial or memorial ceremony with man standing by shelter with bundles of bones, friends and relatives of the dead, and lodge in background, New France (Canada)]

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Illus. in: Voyages et descouvertures faites en la Nouvelle France, depuis l'année 1615 ... / Samuel de Champlain. Paris : C. Collet, 1619, leaf 110 recto.

The Native Americans were the first inhabitants of the Americas. They settled in different regions and formed independent tribes with distinct cultures. By 1492 there were over 300 separate native languages. When Christopher Columbus landed on October 12, 1492, he thought he had reached India, and called the native people Indians, a name which gave them a collective identity. The Indians, Columbus reported, "are so naive and so free with their possessions that no one who has not witnessed them would believe it. When you ask for something they have, they never say no. To the contrary, they offer to share with anyone...."

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01/01/1619
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Library of Congress
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