An Ancient Bond with the Land

People of the Longhouse

The Longhouse as a Household

The many families that cooked over the fireplaces of a longhouse shared more than the warmth of the hearth. Upon marriage, a woman brought her new husband to reside in her family's longhouse. There, she lived alongside her sisters, her mother, and possibly her grandmother and great-aunts and their families. A senior woman - a grandmother, for example - was looked to for her wisdom and knowledge. She was an authority within the longhouse.

Bonds between women were strong. It was the women of a longhouse who together controlled the fields that they depended on for food. The families of a longhouse shared the harvest of those fields.

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