Native American Tribes

By: Nathan Chandler
Image: Shutterstock

About This Quiz

Native Americans are an incredibly diverse minority with a deep history in North America. How much do you know about Native American tribes?

Where is the Chickasaw Nation located?

The Chickasaw Nation is a federally recognized tribe located in Oklahoma. There are roughly 50,000 members in the tribe, which created a new constitution (mostly for business purposes) in 1983.

Which tribe was NOT a part of the powerful Iroquois Confederacy?

The Iroquois Confederacy controlled huge swaths of territory in the Northeast, particularly before the American Revolution. There were eventually six tribes in the Confederacy, but the Sioux wasn't one of them.

As of 2016, the U.S. federal government officially recognizes how many Native American tribes?

If you thought there were only a few dozen tribes recognized in the U.S., you were way, way off. There are 566 official tribes acknowledged by the Bureau of Indian Affairs.

The Ponca tribe was originally located in which area?

The Ponca lived mostly in the Midwest. Today, there are two recognized tribes, one in Oklahoma and one in Nebraska.

The Chickasaw people are closely related to which other tribe?

The Chickasaw people share much of their history with the Choctaw. Both tribes originated in the Southeastern areas of the U.S. During the Civil War, the Chickasaw sided with the Confederates with the understanding that a Southern victory would result in a sovereign Indian country.

Which tribe has been called "People of the South Wind"?

The Kaw people were rooted in the Midwest part of the country. They've been called "People of the South Wind" and "People of Water." There around 3,000 Kaw left in the Oklahoma area.

In the mid-1800s, the infamous Trail of Tears did NOT include the forcible removal of which tribe?

After the 1830 Indian Removal Act was passed, the U.S. forced the removal of mostly Seminole, Cherokee, Choctaw, Muscogee and Chickasaw tribes. Thousands of natives died during the cruel ordeal.

How many battles did the Omaha Indians fight against U.S. military groups?

The Omaha tribe reportedly never fought U.S. forces and were friendly to explorers and settlers. The first European contact with the Omaha tribe occurred around 1700 in the area of Sioux City, Iowa.

The famous Native American known as Sitting Bull was part of which tribe?

Sitting Bull was a Lakota medicine man who for years guided his tribe against U.S. military incursions. Sitting Bull reportedly had a vision of a major victory against a U.S. army, and his premonition came true just weeks later.

In the 1890s, a spiritual leader from which tribe ignited the Ghost Dance movement?

A Northern Paiute leader named Wovoka fanned the flames of Indian resistance through the Ghost Dance, which Native Americans believe would empower them to obtain peace, happiness…and the ability to drive out European invaders.

Where would you find the Cayuga Nation?

The Cayuga Nation is located in New York state. The word Cayuga means "People of the Great Swamp." In 2005, the tribe began buying swaths of land within the reservation and offering financial assistance to natives wishing to return to their homelands.

There are how many primary categories of Shoshone Indians?

There are four distinct groups of Shoshone Native Americans. They include the Eastern, Northen, Western and Gosiute. Only about 1,000 people can speak the Shoshone language today.

Which Native Americans have the largest tribe in the United States?

The Cherokee Nation in Oklahoma is the biggest tribe in the United States. It numbers about 300,000 members. Hundreds of thousands of other people throughout the country claim Cherokee blood.

The Muckleshoot tribe hails from which area?

The Muckleshoot tribe originated in the Washington state area. Modern tribe members rarely speak their native language (called Whulshootseed) but a few natives are attempting to keep the language alive in the 21st century.

Which Native Americans served as "code talkers," who used their native language to encode messages during World War I?

The Choctaw Code Talkers served a vital role, transmitting Allied military messages in their language, which the Germans simply couldn't understand. This gave the Allies a huge advantage in several key battles at the end of the war.

During colonial times, which of the following was not considered to be one of the five so-called Civilized Tribes?

The five Civilized Tribes were the Choctaw, Cherokee, Creek, Chickasaw and Seminole. These tribes integrated aspects of white culture into their own lives, leading settlers to believe that they were more civilized than other tribes.

Which tribe adopted the label of "Unconquered People"?

While many tribes were annihilated or forced to surrender to the U.S. military, the Seminoles never gave up the fight, even though they were eventually driven far into the swamps of Florida.

Which tribe was NOT part of the Iron Confederacy in the 18th century?

The Iron Confederacy was a band of tribes who worked together to fend off common enemies. The Crow were not a part of this band of natives.

The Nez Perce tribe has a reservation located in which state?

The Nez Perce reservation is located in Idaho. In their native language, the name they give themselves means simply "The People." In 1805, William Clark may have been the very first European to interact with the tribe.

During the American Civil War, with which side did the Seminole tribe tend to sympathize?

Although they were from southern areas, the Seminoles tended to sympathize with the North, remaining steadfast with the cause of preserving the Union and abolishing slavery.

The Arapaho tribes tradionally lived in which type of area?

The Arapaho mainly lived on the plains of Wyoming and Colorado. There are about 11,000 Araphao Indians remaining in two major reservations, one in Wyoming and one in Oklahoma.

You would NOT find an official Kickapoo tribe in which state?

There's no official Kickapoo tribe in Iowa. But the tribe is officially established in Texas, Kansas and Oklahoma.

What does Kiowa mean in native language?

The name Kiowa means "Principal People," meant to evoke the concept of the genuine or true people.

Cherokee Native Americans were originally from which part of the country?

The Cherokee were originally based in Southeastern parts of the United States. Many Cherokee were forced into other areas after the Indian Removal Act of the 1830s.

The U.S. government currently recognizes how many different Cheyenne tribes?

The government recognizes two Cheyenne tribes -- the Northern and Southern Cheyenne. The Southern Cheyenne live in Oklahoma; the Northern tribe lives in Montana.

Which tribe was forced to surrender to the U.S. military after the Battle of the Bear Paw Mountains?

Unwilling to sign a treaty with the U.S., the Nez Perce tribe attempted to flee north through the mountains of Montana. After months of running battles, the Nez Perce finally surrendered in the fall of 1877.

The Choctaw tribe currently has about how many members?

With about 200,000 tribal members, the Choctaw make up the third-largest tribe in the United States. They were originally located in Alabama and Mississippi until they were forcibly pushed westward.

Before being relocated, the Shawnee tribe was from which area?

The Shawnee were at home in the forested areas of Ohio. Many Shawnee fought for the Union during the Civil War, and when they returned home, they found that white settlers had taken away their land.

Which tribe defeated George Custer's battalion at the Battle of the Little Bighorn?

The Lakota tribe, led by a legendary chief named Crazy Horse, used a large force to effectively wipe out Custer's men. The famous battle happened in June 1876 in Montana.

Which Northern Plains tribe was the first to adopt horse culture?

Before the American Revolution even began, the Omaha Indians discovered and embraced horse culture. Horses eventually became a symbol of wealth and power among all Native Americans.

About HowStuffWorks Play

How much do you know about dinosaurs? What is an octane rating? And how do you use a proper noun? Lucky for you, HowStuffWorks Play is here to help. Our award-winning website offers reliable, easy-to-understand explanations about how the world works. From fun quizzes that bring joy to your day, to compelling photography and fascinating lists, HowStuffWorks Play offers something for everyone. Sometimes we explain how stuff works, other times, we ask you, but we’re always exploring in the name of fun! Because learning is fun, so stick with us!

Explore More Quizzes