A Chipewyan tipi among the aspens


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The Chipewyan are one of several Athapascan groups occupying the territory between the Hudson bay and the Rocky mountains, from about the fifty-seventh parallel to the Arctic circle. Much of this area is barren, but the streams that feed and drain the innumerable lakes are bordered by thick groves of the slender, white boles of aspens, whose pleasant glades are favored by camps of fishermen and berrypickers. The Chipewyan dwelling, formerly made of the skins of caribou, on which animal these people principally depended for food, clothing, and shelter, was one of the few points in which their culture resembled that of the plains Indians. Their distinctive garment was a leather or fur coat with skirts cut to a point before and behind, a feature to which the appellation Wichipwayaniwuk (“they pointed fur people”), the Cree original of Chipewyan, alluded.

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Chipewyan Indians


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