Crow Nation

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Crow, English

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Hidatsa

The Crow, also called the Absaroka or Apsáalooke, are a Siouan-language tribe of Native Americans who historically lived in the Yellowstone River valley. They now live on a reservation south of Billings, Montana. Tribal headquarters are located at Crow Agency, Montana.

Contents

History

The name of the tribe, Apsáalooke [əˈpsaːloːke], was translated into French by interpreters as gens du corbeaux (people of [the] crows). It means "children of the large-beaked bird," [1] a name given by their neighboring tribe, the Hidatsa. The bird, perhaps now extinct, was defined as a fork-tailed bird resembling the blue jay or magpie. In 1743 near present-day Hardin, Montana, the Absaroka first encountered people of European descent - the two La Vérendryes brothers from French Canada. The explorers called the Apsáalooke beaux hommes (handsome men). The Crow called the French Canadians baashchíile (persons with yellow eyes).

Some historians believe the early home of the Crow-Hidatsa ancestral tribe was near the headwaters of the Mississippi River in either northern Minnesota or Wisconsin; others place them in the Winnipeg area of Manitoba. Later the people moved to the Devil's Lake region of North Dakota before the Crow split from the Hidatsa and moved westward. The Crow were largely pushed Westward by the intrusion and influx of the Sioux. The Sioux being pushed West themselves by American expansion. Once established in Montana and Wyoming, the Crow eventually divided into two groups: the Mountain Crow and River Crow.

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