- The Blackfoot were a tribe of first
nations people who roamed the northern prairies between Saskatchewan
and Missouri. They are also called Blackfeet.
- The Blackfoot were expert horseback
riders, excellent buffalo hunters, and fierce warriors. They were feared
by other Native American groups and were frequently at war with their
neighbors, the Cree, Sioux, Crow, and other tribes. In times of war the
three divisions united to defend their lands.
How did they get their name?
- The name "Blackfoot" is thought to have been given to these people
by the Europeans because of the colour of their clothing and the footwear that they wore.
Other people believe that the feet of the Blackfoot nations were said to
be black from the ashes of the prairie fires.
Who were they?
- The Blackfoot was made of three groups.
They were called the Siksika or Blackfoot proper, the Kainah or Bloods,
and the Piegan or Piikuni.
Where were they from?
- The Blackfoot territory ranged from the North Saskatchewan River
in Alberta to Yellowstone River of Montana, and from the Rocky Mountains
to the Cypress Hills on the Alberta-Saskatchewan border. The Blackfoot
were a nomadic people. This meant that they moved around from place
to place in search of food.
Homes of the Blackfoot
- The Blackfoot people
lived in tipis which were easy to take apart and put back up. The tribes were
divided into several bands. Each band was led by a chief. The
bands met in the summer for social and religious ceremonies.
Men and Women
- The men made weapons and hunted, the
women did household chores, put the tipi up, and gathered wild plants for
- The Blackfoot people had three dialects. That means that
depending on the tribe, the language sounded different. This
included the Bloods, Peigan (Piikuni), and Siksika people. Even
though they all spoke Blackfoot, each tribe would have a difficult time
understanding each other because the dialect was different.
Take a close look at the people, how they were dressed,
where they lived, and what their family looked like. Do you think that
they still live this way today? How do you think that their way of life