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The History of the Mandan Indians in North Dakota and the impact of the European invasion History 262 A North Dakota winter Encarta 95 Life on the plains is hard The winters are long and so very cold Few trees block the strong winds out of the mountainous west The plains yield little to sustain a family So we work we grow food we hunt and we trade our surplus for goods brought by the nomadic tribes The Mandan people were a Native American tribe of the northern plains They struggled against a hostile climate prospered though harassed by hostile tribes and created a rich cultural lifestyle in prehistoric America This is the story of the Mandan people before during and after the invasion of the Europeans PRE CONTACT The Mandans believed they were created beneath the earth and lived there for a long time After a dispute between First Man and Lord of Life a hole opened that allowed a grapevine to grow down to them With the vine came light and the chance to leave their subterranean confines With the help of other animals spirit animals the hole was enlarged and they began to climb out but the vine broke leaving half of them behind to live beneath the earth This was said to have happened near a lake to the east when Good Fur Robe was chief Good Fur Robe is believed to be the father of agrarian life for the Mandans he is thought to have taught them to live on the earth Densmore pg 7 They called themselves Numakake or men Dictionary of Indian Tribes pg 438 The name Mandan is thought to be a corrupted version of Miwatani which
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