Summary and Definition: The Leni Lenape tribe lived along the Delaware River inhabiting New Jersey, eastern Pennsylvania, New York, Connecticut, and Delaware. The Leni Lenape came to be called the Delaware tribe, after the river they originally lived along.
Like Zunigha, most Lenape today don’t live in New York City or the surrounding area. There are only two federally recognized Delaware tribes in the U.S., and both of them are in Oklahoma, where large groups of the Lenape ended up due to forced migration.
Most Lenape Indians were driven out of their homeland by the British. Here is a partial map of the forced travels of the Lenape Indians. The Americans eventually relocated them to Oklahoma, where the modern Delaware Indian tribes are located today. Other Lenape people joined the Nanticoke or Munsee Delawares.
The Lenape had three clans: the Wolf, the Turtle, and the Turkey. These clans were matrilineal, the children traced their clan through their mother.
The Delaware Indians were farming people. Lenape women did most of the farming, harvesting corn, squash and beans. Lenape men went hunting for deer, elk, turkeys, and small game, and caught fish in the rivers and inlets.
Click the Lenape word to hear it pronounced. Common Words and Phrases.
|Hè||Hello! (or) Hi!|
|Làpìch knewël||I will see you again. (Goodbye)|
|tëmike||Come in! (or) Go in!|
Their land, called Lenapehoking, included all of what is now New Jersey, eastern Pennsylvania, southeastern New York State, northern Delaware and a small section of southeastern Connecticut. Today, Lenape communities live all across North America.
Lenape is an eastern Algonquian language originally spoken in eastern Pennsylvania, southeastern New York, all of New Jersey, and northern Delaware.
The Delaware Indians were originally known as the Lenape or Lenni Lenape Indians, the name they called themselves. The American colonists named them the Delaware Indians.
The Lenape were a deeply religious people and their belief in a Creator and eleven lessor Gods reached all aspects of their lives. They believed that all things had souls. This reflected a deep reverence for their natural environment and a concept that they were only a small part of Nature’s grand scheme.
The Delaware were often called the “Grandfathers” because they were respected by other tribes as peacemakers and often served to settle disputes between rivaling tribes. They were also known for being fierce and tenacious warriors when they had to fight, however, they preferred to be peaceful.
In their language, the words Lenni Lenape mean “men of men,” or, “original people.” Every band had a sachem or chief chosen by certain women called chiefmakers.
The history of our tribe in its homeland goes back over 10,000 years. We are the descendants of those Nanticoke and Lenape who remained, or returned, to our ancient homeland after many of our relatives suffered removals and forced migrations to the mid-western United States or into Canada.
Meet Native America: Mark Gould, Chief of the Nanticoke Lenni -Lenape Tribal Nation. Chief Mark Quiet Hawk Gould taking part in A Day of Celebration!
Those original people of what would become the city of Philadelphia were the Lenape. They were hunters, fisher people, and cultivated the area around Philadelphia along the banks of what are now called the Delaware and Schuylkill rivers.