Indigenous Technology

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A Native American Thought of It
Format: Paperback
Text Content Territories: Indigenous American; Indigenous Canadian;

Inventiveness and ingenuity from North America's First Nations.

Everyone knows that moccasins, canoes and toboggans were invented by the Aboriginal people of North America, but did you know that they also developed their own sign language, as well as syringe needles and a secret ingredient in soda pop?

Depending on where they lived, Aboriginal communities relied on their ingenuity to harness the resources available to them. Some groups, such as the Iroquois, were particularly skilled at growing and harvesting food. From them, we get corn and wild rice, as well as maple syrup.

Other groups, including the Sioux and Comanche of the plains, were exceptional hunters. Camouflage, fish hooks and decoys were all developed to make the task of catching animals easier. And even games-lacrosse, hockey and volleyball -- have Native American roots.

Other clever inventions and innovations include:

* Diapers
* Asphalt
* Megaphones
* Hair conditioner
* Surgical knives
* Sunscreen.

With descriptive photos and information-packed text, this book explores eight different categories in which the creativity of First Nations peoples from across the continent led to remarkable inventions and innovations, many of which are still in use today.

Series Information
This book is a part of the We Thought of It series, a series which takes readers on a fascinating journey across the world's second largest continent to discover how aspects of its culture have spread around the globe.

Additional Information
48 pages | 8.50" x 11.00"

Authentic Canadian Content
Authentic Indigenous Text
$9.95

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Canoe Crossings: Understanding the Craft that Helped Shape British Columbia
Authors:
Sanford Osler
Shelagh Rogers
Format: Paperback
Text Content Territories: Indigenous Canadian; First Nations;

“A comprehensive and well-informed review of canoeing and kayaking in British Columbia.” —BC Studies

Often called one of the Seven Wonders of Canada, the canoe has played a particularly important role in British Columbia. This seemingly simple watercraft allowed coastal First Nations to hunt on the open ocean and early explorers to travel the province’s many waterways. Always at the crossroads of canoe culture, BC today is home to innovative artists and designers who have rediscovered ancient canoe-building techniques, as well as community leaders who see the canoe’s potential to bring people together in exciting, inspiring ways.

The story of Canoe Crossings begins some fifteen thousand years ago, when, as compelling new evidence suggests, the first humans to reach the Americas did so by canoe down the West Coast. It continues through the centuries, chronicling the evolution of the canoe and its impact on the various people who used it to explore, hunt, trade, fight, race, create, and even heal. The book contains dozens of stories of colourful, passionate people who have contributed to the province’s canoe culture, including a teenager who lived ninety feet up in a tree house while designing and building the world’s longest kayak; a group of high school students who practised on a tiny lake and went on to win several World Dragon Boat Championships; and at-risk Aboriginal youth who reconnected with their traditional culture through annual “big canoe” trips.

Canoe Crossings will appeal to anyone who has ever sought adventure, found solace, or seen beauty in a canoe or wondered about the origins of its design and use in British Columbia and beyond.

Reviews
“The canoe is a threshold vessel—a skin, a fabric, and some bark between water and sky. Floating is some kind of miracle, some kind of dream. All canoeists are dreamers to a degree. As you will see in Canoe Crossings, the canoe has always brought diverse groups of people together, both for joy and for common purpose, and it always will." —from the foreword by Shelagh Rogers

 
"Nobody has done a better job of connecting the 'canoe dots' on the Northwest Coast and BC's interior waterways than Sanford Osler. His lifelong interest in canoe travel, canoe design, and canoe personalities enthuses Canoe Crossings with both wisdom and generosity of spirit. His book is a 'j-stroke' in prose." —Michael Robinson, Director, Bill Reid Gallery of Northwest Coast Art

"An important and substantial contribution to canoe literature and to the significance of this watercraft in BC. The blend of history, present-day, and personal accounts is sensitively and fascinatingly presented. A highly informative and captivating read." —Käri-Ann Thor, President, Recreational Canoeing Association of British Columbia
 
"Canoe Crossings is not just about the canoe, but about the many people throughout history to the modern day whose existence and livelihood depend on this noble craft. Sanford Osler brings their passion for paddling to life. If you have ever held a paddle in your hand, you should read this book." —Bob Putnam, Deep Cove Canoe and Kayak

Additional Information
192 pages | 5.50" x 8.50"

Authentic Canadian Content
$19.95

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Cedar: Tree of Life to the Northwest Coast Indians
Authors:
Hilary Stewart
Format: Paperback
From the giant cedar of the rainforest came a wealth of raw materials vital to the way of life, art and culture of the early First Nations people of the Northwest Coast.

All parts of the cedar tree had many uses. From the wood, skilled men made ocean-going canoes, massive post-and-beam houses, monumental carved poles that declared history, rights and lineage, and powerful dance masks. Women dexterously wove the inner bark into mats and baskets, plied it into cordage and netting or processed it into soft, warm, water-repellent clothing. They also made the strong withes into heavy-duty rope and wove the roots into watertight baskets.

Hilary Stewart explains, through her vivid descriptions, 550 detailed drawings and 50 photographs, the tools and techniques used, as well as the superbly crafted objects and their uses, all in the context of daily and ceremonial life. Anecdotes, oral history and the accounts of early explorers, traders, missionaries and native elders highlight the text.
$29.95

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Crafts and Skills of the Native Americans: Tipis, Canoes, Jewelry, Moccasins, and More
Authors:
David R. Montgomery
Format: Paperback

Crafts and Skills of Native Americans is a fascinating, practical guide to the skills that have made Native Americans famous worldwide as artisans and craftsmen. Readers can replicate traditional Native American living by trying a hand at brain tanning, identifying animal tracks, or constructing a horse saddle. Readers can even make distinctive Native American beaded jewelry, a variety of moccasins, headdresses, and gourd rattles. Native American style is unique and popular, especially among young people, historians, and those with a special interest in the American West.

Additional Information
240 pages | 5.50" x 8.50"

$22.95

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How to Build an Iglu and a Qamutiik: Inuit Tools and Techniques, Volume One
Artists:
Andrew Breithaupt
Format: Paperback
Text Content Territories: Inuit;

The iglu, a traditional winter shelter built in the Arctic for centuries, is a vital part of Inuit culture. The qamutiik, a traditional sled used for hunting, is an essential tool whose versatility and dependability have allowed it to endure over time.

In How to Build an Iglu & a Qamutiik, Solomon Awa provides thorough how-to instructions on building iglus and qamutiiks, along with general background information on their construction and importance to survival. Complete with detailed, clear illustrations, this valuable resource will teach readers to build these structures that are so central to Inuit culture and tradition.

Educator Information
Delivered in a dual-language format of English and Ikutitut.

Additional Information
32 pages | 9.00" x 7.00" | b&w illustrations, colour photographs

Authentic Canadian Content
Authentic Indigenous Text
$9.95

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Indian Fishing: Early Methods on the Northwest Coast, 40th Anniversary Edition
Authors:
Hilary Stewart
Format: Paperback
Of the many resources available to the First Nations of the Northwest Coast, the most vital was fish. The people devised ingenious ways of catching the different species of fish, creating a technology vastly different from that of today’s industrial world. With attention to clarity and detail, Hilary Stewart illustrates their hooks, lines, sinkers, lures, floats, clubs, spears, harpoons, nets, traps, rakes and gaffs, showing how these were made and used in over 450 remastered drawings and 75 photographs. With material gathered from museum archives, fish camps and coastal village elders, the scope of this classic volume covers everything from how the catch was butchered, cooked, rendered and preserved to the attributes of fish designs on household and ceremonial objects—images that tell of fishing’s importance to the whole culture. The spiritual aspects of fishing are also described—prayers and ceremonies in gratitude and honour to the fish, as well as customs and taboos indicating the people’s respect for this life-giving resource.

An incredibly varied and highly refined assemblage of tools, techniques and knowledge, the culmination of thousands of years of evolutionary development, Indian Fishing is more than a bare account of the technology of fishing; it is about fish and fishing in the total lives of the Northwest Coast people. A classic, thoroughly researched and informative text, it examines fishing techniques of a people who have lived on the coast for over 9,000 years to reveal their complex and rich culture.
Authentic Canadian Content
$28.95

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