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Coastal vs. Plateau Indians

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    Many years ago, in about the 4500-2000 B.C when Native people entered the Pacific Northwest, there were two American groups, the Coastal tribe and the Plateau tribe. The Coastal and Plateau Indians had a lot of similarities and differences, but if I got to choose whether to be a Coastal Indian or a Plateau Indian, I would want to be a Coastal Indian. The Coastal people had an easier lifestyle. They didn’t have to work as hard to get food, they had better homes, and the climate was good to live in.

    The Coastal Indians lived by the ocean so the people had plenty of water to grow plants. They could go fishing for salmon and other types of fish and hey could also go sea hunting for clams, mussels, oysters, crabs, seals, sea lions, sturgeon, porpoises, and whales. The Plateau Indian had to travel to known sites on a yearly basis to get food. Men had to go hunting for elk, buffalo, and smaller animals such as rabbits, mountain goats, sheep and birds. women and children also had to dig for camas bulbs, and groups of people had to move to the mountains to pick huckleberries.

    Another reason why it is easier to be a Coastal Indian is because the Coastal Indians lived in homes built by red cedar. the Plateau people had to live in Pit houses, that were replaced by Tule houses after the early 1800s. Also, the Coastal Indians lived in a mild marine climate. The Plateau Indians had hot dry summers and wet snowy winters.

    As you can see, being a Coastal Indian is better than being a Plateau Indian. There are more reason why Coastal Indians had an easier lifestyle, but I think these are the main reasons why I think I would want to be a Coastal Indian.

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    What Indians lived in the Plateau?
    Plateau tribes included the Nez Perce, Flathead, Kutenai, Palus, Coeur D'Alene, Cayuse, and Kalispel, and these groups lived in the forests, woods and prairies and along the rivers. The climate, land and natural resources that were available to the Indian tribes resulted in the adoption of the Plateau Indians culture.
    What is the difference between coastal and Plateau tribes?
    Another big difference between the Coastal and Plateau Indians are their shelter. Unlike the Plateau Indians the Coastal Indians weren't nomadic so they had permanent structures call longhouses which werer 40 to a 100ft long and 20 to 30ft wide. The Plateau Indians had teepees.
    What were the Plateau Indians known for?
    The Plateau tribes were semi-nomadic. They moved from place to place throughout the year to gather edible vegetables and fruits. The gathering of these plants is still a traditional way of life among many of the people of these tribes today. Fishing was very important to these tribes.
    Who were the coastal and Plateau tribes?
    Native Americans formed two contrasting cultural groups. These two groups were the coastal and the plateau Indians. The coastal Indians lived west of the Cascade Mountains. Coastal tribes lived in permanent villages near the rivers and along the shorelines of the Pacific Ocean and Puget Sound.

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