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Native American Rulers
Native American Rulers
Native American Rulers

Native American Rulers

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12" Wooden Ruler made in U.S.A. of American-grown basswood.

The first name on this ruler is that of Hiawatha (c.1450), who never encountered European colonists. Subsequent Native Americans fought the invaders or tried to make peace with them, while the final few on the list fought, or continue to fight, for the rights of their people in what has become a European society.

King Philip (1639?-1676) fought the white colonizers of New England in a war that came to be named after him. Red Cloud (1822-1909) and Geronimo (1829-1909) did the same on the Plains and in the South West. Dennis Banks (1937-2017) spent his life campaigning for native rights.

The dates listed on this ruler are the years of each individual’s birth and death, if known. We have also listed each person’s Nation (a designation that used to be called “tribe” or “confederation”, terms that we no longer use).

You might want to learn more about Cornplanter (1732-1836), who argued for neutrality and peace, or about Seattle (1786?-1866) who gave his name to a city. Did you know that Sacagawea, who assisted Lewis and Clark, may have died in 1812 or in 1884? There is evidence for both dates, and scholars still disagree!

The “head” image is of Chief Joseph (c.1840-1904) of the Nez Percé, based on a 1909 photograph taken by photographer Edward S. Curtis (1868-1952), who later called him “one of the greatest men who ever lived”.

If you like this ruler, you might also be interested in African American Rulers, Rulers and Patriots, Rulers of the South, or Rulers of the North.