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November is National Native American Heritage Month!

November 19th, 2022 · No Comments · Books, City Library, Library Displays, Main Branch

In 1990, President George H. W. Bush designated November of that year as the first National Native American Heritage Month. Prior to 1990, a week in the fall had been designated to recognize the original inhabitants of North America and their vast achievements and contributions.

New Hampshire is on the land of the Abenaki, often translated as “People of the Dawnland.” Many places and natural features of the state use the Native American names, including Amoskeag (at the fish land) and Merrimack (deep water).

Whenever possible, it is encouraged to learn from the people themselves. It is also important to use the language preferred by each group. The list below is provided by the National Park Service:

  • Alaska Native This term refers to the indigenous people of the area. Native Alaskan is anyone from Alaska (including non-indigenous).
  • American Indian Some tribes prefer Native American. Use specific tribal name(s) whenever possible, accurate, and appropriate. See also First Nations, tribal names.
  • First Nation, First Nations Refers to aboriginal people in Canada who are neither Inuit (people of the Canadian Arctic) nor Métis (descendants of First Nation people who married Europeans). The term is widely used in Canada but is not used in the US, except in connection with Métis whose homelands include northwest Minnesota, North Dakota, or other northern states. See also American Indian.
  • Native American Use if requested by specific tribes or parks. See American Indian.
  • tribal name Use specific tribal name(s) whenever possible, accurate, and appropriate.

New Hampshire is the only New England state without any federally or state-recognized tribes. This does not mean that there are no active groups within the state. The Cowasuck Band of the Pennacook Abenaki, for example, have filed for federal recognition. For more information on Native Americans in New Hampshire and New England, please see the following resources:

The Cowasuck Band of the Pennacook-Abenaki (

Indigenous New Hampshire Collaborative Collective (

Nulhegan Band of the Coosuk Abenaki Nation (

Abenaki Nation of New Hampshire (

Passamaquoddy Tribe (

Native American Organizations with ties to New Hampshire (

The library also has a selection of books on Native Americans, some of which can be found here:


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