FIGURE'D STONE-CHIPPEWA CHIEF T-Shirt
The Ojibwa, Anishinaabe, or Chippewa (also Ojibwe, Ojibway, Chippeway, Aanishanabe, or Anishinabek) is the largest group of Native Americans-First Nations north of Mexico, including Métis. They are the third largest in the United States, surpassed only by Cherokee and Navajo. They are equally divided between the United States and Canada. Because they were formerly located mainly around Sault Ste. Marie, at the outlet of Lake Superior, the French referred to them as Saulteurs. Ojibwa who subsequently moved to the prairie provinces of Canada have retained the name Saulteaux. The major component group of the Anishinaabe, in the U.S. they number over 100,000 living in an area stretching across the north from Michigan to Montana. Another 76,000, in 125 bands, live in Canada, stretching from western Québec to eastern British Columbia. They are known for their birch bark canoes, sacred birch bark scrolls, the use of cowrie shells, wild rice, copper points, and for the fact that they were the only Native Americans to come close to defeating the Dakota band of the Sioux. The Ojibwe Nation was the first to set the agenda for signing more detailed treaties with Canada's leaders before many settlers were allowed too far west. The Midewiwin Society is well respected as the keeper of detailed and complex scrolls of events, history, songs, maps, memories, stories, geometry, and mathematics.