Typical of the Plains Indians in many aspects of their culture, the Blackfoot, also known as Blackfeet, were nomadic hunter-gatherers, living in teepees and subsisting primarily on buffalo and gathered vegetable foods.
Blackfoot Indians played games, hunted, fished and did arts and crafts for fun. Storytelling was also important to this tribe, because it was a way to pass down folk tales and legends from generation to generation. Blackfoot children played many of the same games children in other parts of the country played.
Only one of the Niitsitapi tribes are called Blackfoot or Siksika. The name is said to have come from the color of the peoples’ moccasins, made of leather. They had typically dyed or painted the soles of their moccasins black.
Siksikáí’powahsin (commonly referred to as the Blackfoot language) is an Algonquian language spoken by four Blackfoot nations: the Siksiká (Blackfoot ), Aapátohsipikani (North Piikani), Aamsskáápipikani (South Piikani) and Kainai (Blood).
The Blackfeet Indian Reservation is home to the 17,321-member Blackfeet Nation, one of the 10 largest tribes in the United States. Established by treaty in 1855, the reservation is located in northwest Montana.
Blackfoot Religion and Ceremonies The Blackfoot religion was very complex. Their main god was the sun, but they also believed in a supernatural being named Napi, which means ‘Old Man. ‘ The Blackfoot tribe also had complicated beliefs about supernatural powers in connection with nature.
The Blackfoot in the United States are officially known as the Blackfeet Nation, though the Blackfoot word siksika, from which the English name was translated, is not plural.
Today there are about 25,000 citizens of the four Blackfoot Indian bands. About 10,000 of them live in the United States, and the rest live in Canada. There are also many other people who are Blackfoot descendants but are not tribal members.
Blackfeet: ( Hello ) Oki! (pronounced “oh-kee”); (go home), waahkayi.
1: a member of an American Indian people of Montana, Alberta, and Saskatchewan. 2: the Algonquian language of the Blackfeet.
Under the Indian Reorganization Act of 1934, the Blackfeet became a federally – recognized tribe, with their own Constitution and By-Laws, approved and ratified in the fall of 1935.
The Blackfoot tribe had many enemies including Cree, the Assiniboin, the Sioux, the Crow, the Nez Perce, the Shoshone, the Flathead. But their biggest enemy was the white man who they called the Big Knives.
This article is part of the vocabulary section of the Blackfoot language. Blackfoot vocabulary/Animals.
There are three branches of the Blackfeet peoples-the Northern Blackfeet (Siksika), the Blood and the Piegan or Pikuni. The tribe call themselves ” Niitsitapi ” (nee-itsee-TAH-peh) meaning “the real people.”
O’siyo – Hello. Do hi tsu – How are you. Do hi quu – I am well. Wadv – Thank you. E tsi – Mother.