Algonquian Indians

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Delaware Tribe.jpg
Portrait of Tish-Co-Han, a chief of the Delaware tribe.

"Algonquian peoples" is a linguistic (but also, historically: cultural) designation referring to a variety of groups of American Indians who speak Algonquian languages. The Algonquian language family is one of the largest in America. American Indians who spoke one of the many Algonquian languages have lived across eastern North America from the Atlantic Ocean to the Rocky Mountains and from northern Canada to the Carolinas.

The Algonquian American Indian groups who lived in modern-day Ohio stayed mainly in small farming villages. Maize or corn was their most important crop. Some of the tribes who either lived in or near Ohio and who spoke languages in the Algonquian language family included the Shawnees, the Lenape (historically sometimes called Delawares), the Miamis, the Eel River tribes, the Ottawas, the Wea tribe, the Potawatomi, the Sauk, and the Piankashaw. Most Algonquian tribes allied themselves with the French until France lost its North American colonies in the French and Indian War (1756-1763). Fearing white settlement of their lands, many Algonquian-speaking peoples then sided with the British in the American Revolution, and in the War of 1812. By the 1840s, most Algonquian-speaking tribes had been forcibly removed west of the Mississippi under increasingly aggressive U.S. American Indian removal policies.

See Also


  1. Hurt, R. Douglas. The Ohio Frontier: Crucible of the Old Northwest, 1720-1830. Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press, 1996.