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Native North Americans of the Algonquian branch of the Algonquian-Wakashan linguistic stock (see Native American languagesNative American languages,
languages of the native peoples of the Western Hemisphere and their descendants. A number of the Native American languages that were spoken at the time of the European arrival in the New World in the late 15th cent.
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). They occupied in the early 19th cent. a large range of territory around the Upper Missouri (above the Yellowstone) and North Saskatchewan rivers W to the Rockies. Their name derives from the fact that they dyed their moccasins black. There were three main tribes—the Siksika, or Blackfoot proper; the Piegan; and the Kainah, or Blood. Although they did not form a unified political entity, they were united in defending their lands and in warfare. The Atsina (related to the Arapaho) and the Athapascan-speaking Sarsi were allied with the Blackfoot group. The Blackfoot were unremittingly hostile toward neighboring tribes and usually toward white men; intrusions upon Blackfoot lands were efficiently repelled. Prior to the mid-18th cent. they had moved into the N Great Plains area, acquired horses from southern tribes, and developed a nomadic Plains culture, largely dependent on the buffalo. Their only cultivated crop was tobacco, grown for ceremonial purposes. With the early coming of the white man, the Blackfoot gained wealth from the sale of beaver pelts, but the killing off of the buffalo and the near exhaustion of fur stocks brought them to near starvation. Presently the Blackfoot are mainly ranchers and farmers living on reservations in Montana and Alberta. They continue to a small degree the rich ceremonialism that earlier marked their religion; important rituals include the sun dance and the vision quest. In 1990 there were 38,000 Blackfoot in the United States and over 11,000 in Canada.


See J. C. Ewers, The Blackfeet: Raiders on the Northwestern Plains (1958, repr. 1967); H. A. Dempsey, Crowfoot, Chief of the Blackfeet (1972); M. McFee, Modern Blackfeet (1972); B. Nettl, Blackfoot Musical Thought (1989).

References in periodicals archive ?
In the last 30 years, FEMA has funded more than $15 billion in projects, like the Blackfoot retrofit, saving the nation countless dollars on recovery and lessening the potential impacts on residents.
His beadwork is a perfect example of Blackfoot beadwork; bold and elegant.
This was one of the earliest records of a smallpox epidemic that swept through the Blackfoot time after time, decimating the three tribes of Blackfoot, Blood, and Peigan that made up the Blackfoot nation.
1) As for the body of the book itself, the first two chapters, written by Conaty, provide background on museum and First Nation relations in Canada as well as Blackfoot cultural change as a result of sustained contact with Euro-Canadians and EuroAmericans.
These bundles are shared among the whole confederacy and these buffalo coming back to the Blackfeet in Montana, they're part of the Blackfoot confederacy," said Fox, who noted that members from the Piikani, Siksika, and Blackfeet participated in the ceremony.
Archaeologists Gerald and Joy Oetelaar have argued that the Blackfoot (Niitsitapi) world was made up of "focal points of spiritual power" requiring the observance of ritual and storytelling to maintain relationships between humans and the otherworldly figures that gave balance and life to the Niitsitapi homeland.
The Blackfoot board stepped right in to provide the single-largest donation that the college has received to date, said Joel Block, Blackfoot vice president customer relations, product management & marketing.
As a result of the acquisitions, Blackfoot also adds a combined workforce of 26, including 11 employees from the deal with FairPoint.
Blackfoot just completed the acquisition of Cutthroat Communications, a communications services provider offering wireless and fibre optic technologies.
By the early 20th century, quillworking and its attendant customs had all but disappeared among the Blackfoot.
Farr makes use of extensive archival research to reconstruct the story of Spopee, a Blackfoot Indian who spent 32 years in an insane asylum after shooting a white man in 1879, and in so doing examines the larger social and racial history of the last days before the confinement of the American Blackfeet to a reservation.
In the past, Blackfoot has used these funds to deliver technology.