To what extent did the contact with Europeans cause change, as well as foster continuity, in the culture and society of at least one specific group of Native Americans? Options for group: Cherokee, Sioux, Iroquois, Cheyenne, Navajo

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Contact with the European settlers had a tremendous impact on Native American life. The Europeans brought unnamed dangers to native communities, for one thing. Some were in the form of new diseases, such as smallpox, influenza, chicken pox, and measles. According to some estimates, up to 90 percent of Native...

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Contact with the European settlers had a tremendous impact on Native American life. The Europeans brought unnamed dangers to native communities, for one thing. Some were in the form of new diseases, such as smallpox, influenza, chicken pox, and measles. According to some estimates, up to 90 percent of Native Americans died from these viruses, as they had had no exposure to them before the Europeans arrived and thus no immunity. According to some estimates, up to 10,000 Cherokee died from a smallpox outbreak that took place in 1738 and 1739, after the Cherokees accompanied the British on an expedition to Florida. After the outbreak, the Cherokee population had been reduced by half.

Contact with the Europeans brought tremendous advancements to Native American communities, too. Highly significant was the fact that the merging of cultures provided an opportunity to trade goods. Native hunters traded animal skins and pelts for tools, such as axes, knives, and guns. Soon, their methods of hunting changed, and with the introduction of metal pots, so did their methods of cooking. Most significantly, however, contact with the Europeans eventually led to the devastation of the Cherokee Nation and the forced removal of these people from their homeland.

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