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"He must die unless the whole country shall play crosse:" the Role of Gaming in Great Lakes Indigenous Societies

Author(s): Martin Cooper ; Ronald Williamson

Year: 2015

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Lacrosse, Canada’s national sport, originated with the pre-contact racket and ball games of the Iroquoian and Anishinaabeg peoples of northeastern North America. Like many traditional Indigenous games, racket and snow snake events represented much more than sport, involving aspects of physical prowess, warfare, prestige, gambling, dreaming, curing, mourning and shamanism. Gambling, in particular, was an important cultural activity that according to seventeenth century accounts, resulted in some participants returning to their villages naked, having wagered and lost all their possessions, including their clothes. This paper examines the ethnohistoric and archaeological evidence for gaming in the Great Lakes Region and explores the roles these games played in peoples lives.

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"He must die unless the whole country shall play crosse:" the Role of Gaming in Great Lakes Indigenous Societies. Ronald Williamson, Martin Cooper. Presented at The 80th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, San Francisco, California. 2015 ( tDAR id: 394872)


Geographic Keywords
North America - Northeast

Spatial Coverage

min long: -80.815; min lat: 39.3 ; max long: -66.753; max lat: 47.398 ;

Arizona State University The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation National Science Foundation National Endowment for the Humanities Society for American Archaeology Archaeological Institute of America