50 Indigenous and Enchanting Facts about Native Tribes

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26 Tarahumara people

Tarahumara people

There are a group of Native Americans named Tarahumara people in Mexico who run 200 miles in one session and hunt by running their prey to death.

27. There is a place in Mongolia named Ikh Khorig that was declared sacred by Genghis Khan. The only people allowed to enter were the Mongol Royal Family and a tribe of elite warriors, the darkhat, whose job it was to guard it, punishment for entering being death. They carried out their task for 697 years, until 1924.

28. The Bureau of Indian Affairs still sends bolts of cloth every year to New York Indian tribes as part of the debt owed from the Treaty of Canandaigua of 1794.

29. The Kalash people are white-skinned, blue-eyed tribe in the back country of Pakistan, who claim to be descendants of the ancient Greeks.

30. An Indonesian tribe successfully uses the “Gandarusa” bush as a form of male birth control. Scientists say the plant prevents pregnancy by slowing down the activity of certain enzymes in the sperm that help them wriggle into a female’s ovum.

31 Ostrich people

Ostrich people

The people of an isolated tribe in Zimbabwe only have two toes. They are also known as the ostrich people.

32. The word “Sioux” is not actually a word. It is a partial word from “Nadowessioux” which is an insult that means “little snakes.” The tribes associated with this nomenclature are actually the Dakota, the Lakota, and the Nakota.

33. The US Government took the land on which Mt. Rushmore was built from the Sioux nation, and developed Mt. Rushmore on sacred Sioux grounds without any compensation. The US Government has offered over $1 billion in compensation, but the Sioux refuse to take it, saying the land was never for sale.

34. The White House didn’t have a 4th of July celebration until 1801. Cherokee chiefs were invited and cockfighting was part of the celebration.

35. Several Native American tribes fought on the side of the British in the Revolutionary War, including the Mohawk and the Cherokee.

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36 Georgia land lotteries

Georgia land lotteries

After the removal of the Creek and Cherokee from their lands, the state of Georgia held a series of public lotteries to give away the property to White settlers.

37. From 1956 to 1996 the Mormon Church operated a program where Native American kids would be baptized and placed in Mormon foster homes, thinking it would “lighten” them. It was based on the Mormon belief that Native Americans were originally white until God punished them by making them darker.

38. 1 in 4 children born on the Pine Ridge Native American Reservation is born with fetal alcohol syndrome.

39. The Native American Yuki people of California use base 8 instead of 10 because they don’t count with their fingers, but with the spaces between them.

40. Magellan’s expedition claimed to have encountered giants in South America. While anchored near modern-day Argentina, Magellan’s men reported encountering 8-foot-tall men on the beaches of Patagonia. Historians have surmised that the “giants” were actuality members of the Tehuelche tribe.

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41 Megaliths


A nomadic tribe lived over 12,000 years ago in Turkey and built massive megaliths over a 25-acre area. At that time mankind only knew how to make fire but had not discovered the wheel yet. Excavations are still going on today.

42. According to the 1995 census, the majority of American Indians prefer the term “Indian” over “Native American” in referring to them.

43. The Bayanzi tribe of the Congo had a unique way of execution via decapitation. While alive, the condemned was made to sit down and his/her head was connected to a springy tree branch with a cord and the legs and body were tied to stakes, so that when the head was cut off, it would be thrown through the air “With the force of a bomb”.

44. An isolated tribe (Toulambi tribes) in Papua New Guinea met a white man for the first time in 1976 and thought that the white man is covered in dirt/sand.

45. A black fur trader in the American West got captured by a band of Crow Indians and got mistaken for a Chief’s long-lost son. He eventually became their Chief (James Beckwourth) himself.

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46 Shipibo Indians

Shipibo Indians

There is an Indian tribe (Shipibo Indians) in South America that makes psychedelic designs that can be read as music.

47. There is a tribe of people in an almost inaccessible Himalayan valley that made a decision to bring their own race to extinction by choosing to not have children. If you broke the no breeding tribal rule, you would be banned from the village, which was, in essence, a death sentence.

48. There is a tribe in Papua New Guinea where the women ambush men for sex and can urinate on him and bite off his eyebrow and eyelashes if they aren’t satisfied.

49. The Hualapai Tribe in Arizona agreed to allow the builder of the Grand Canyon Skywalk to operate it for 25 years to recoup his $30 million investment. In 2012, just 5 years after it opened, the tribe seized control of the Skywalk. They lost in court and now must pay the builder $28.5 million.

50. In the Aka tribe of Central Africa the male and female roles are virtually interchangeable. Women hunt, men mind the children and vice versa. Men spend 47 percent of their time within reach of their kids, more than any other society, and even let them suckle.

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  1. As a member of the “Mormon” church the so called “Fact” that the church believed that adopting native Americans would lighten their skin perpetuates stereotypes. I live about 30 miles away from one of the biggest boarding schools and I have never heard anyone mention that it would that adopting native Americans would lighten their skin. Maybe someone personally believed this but it has NEVER been taught in all my years as a member of the church in fact it sounds kind of ridiculous.

    • I call BS on you, Sir.

      Let us not forget the Mountain Meadows Massacre, wherein Mormon men painted their skin to look like Paiutes, and slaughtered an entire wagon train, and the kidnap of young children.

      Also, I believe they are referring to the “White and Delightsome” reference to those Native who supported God and Co, and punishing the remainder of the Natives with dark skin.

      You know your own history. You need to speak all of it, not just the good.

  2. Yah, I love these lists, but many of the ‘facts’ are obviously just stuff they found on the internet with no attempt at acutal fact checking.

  3. I love reading your facts, but you fact about Tommy Prince being Native American is not true. He was in Fact a Native Canadian from Winnopen.

  4. Incorrect on both counts; ‘Native Americans’ is the term adopted by the US government to refer specifically to Indigenous people residing within the boundaries of the United States; not North America. We also do not use the term Native Canadians. We use the term Indigenous peoples of Canada or sometimes Aboriginal Canadians. Our indigenous peoples comprise the First Nations, Inuit and Métis. Sergeant Prince, being from the Brokenhead Ojibway Nation, is therefore First Nations.

  5. I’m puzzled that ‘Indians’ don’t balk at the term Native American. It ties there identity to a European explorer, Amerigo Vespucci. But, I suppose Pre-Vespucci Indigenous Persons is a tad awkward.

    • I find both offensive, as we are not in India, nor was this land called America when we were here.

      First Nations, Indigenous Peoples, Native. Those are all fine with me.

  6. Tommy Prince was a Canadian Native! Not American as stated!
    He was born outside of Winnipeg Manitoba Canada! He was the most decorated Native Canadian in WW2and the Korean War, he died, from Alcoholism and there is a Monuement in Winnipeg to that affect! Get your crap right please!

  7. Two spirit is actually a blanket term. Different nations have different meanings and cultural contexts. Gender binaries were imposed on many nations by the church.

    I am a two spirit woman, and for me it is a spiritual/cultural way of understanding my identity and role in community. I take on ceremonial roles that are not always typical for women. I am biologically woman, not trans. Many trans or queer indigenous people also identify with this blanket term.



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