The area formerly occupied by the Algonquian family was more extensive than that of any other linguistic stock in North America, their territory reaching from Labrador to the Rocky Mountains, and from Churchill River of Hudson Bay as far south at least as Pamlico Sound of North Carolina. In the eastern part of this territory was an area occupied by Iroquoian tribes, surrounded on almost all sides by their Algonquian neighbors. On the south the Algonquian tribes were bordered by those of Iroquoian and Siouan (Catawba) stock, on the southwest and west by the Muskhogean and Siouan tribes, and on the northwest by the Kitunahan and the great Athapascan families, while along the coast of Labrador and the eastern shore of Hudson Bay they came in contact with the Eskimo, who were gradually retreating before them to the north. In Newfoundland they encountered the Beothukan family, consisting of but a single tribe. A portion of the Shawnee at some early period had separated from the main body of the tribe in central Tennessee and pushed their way down to the Savannah River in South Carolina, where, known as Savannahs, they carried on destructive wars with the surrounding tribes until about the beginning of the eighteenth century they were finally driven out and joined the Delaware in the north. Soon afterwards the rest of the tribe was expelled by the Cherokee and Chicasa, who thenceforward claimed all the country stretching north to the Ohio River.
48The Cheyenne and Arapaho, two allied tribes of this stock, had become separated from their kindred on the north and had forced their way through hostile tribes across the Missouri to the Black Hills country of South Dakota, and more recently into Wyoming and Colorado, thus forming the advance guard of the Algonquian stock in that direction, having the Siouan tribes behind them and those of the Shoshonean family in front.
PRINCIPAL ALGONQUINIAN TRIBES.
Population.—The present number of the Algonquian stock is about 95,600, of whom about 60,000 are in Canada and the remainder in the United States. Below is given the population of the tribes officially recognized, compiled chiefly from the United States Indian Commissioner’s report for 1889 and the Canadian Indian report for 1888. It is impossible to give exact figures, owing to the fact that in many instances two or more tribes are enumerated together, while many individuals are living with other tribes or amongst the whites: