The arrival of Europeans in North America resulted in the outright extinction of many Indian peoples, and, for those who survived, confinement to small reservations. Despite a subsequent cascade of determined efforts by Euro-Americans to extinguish the Indians' cultural lineages, the reservations allowed tribal groups to nurture and retain key elements of their ancestral cultures. Reservations, however, were composed of only a fraction of the lands formerly used by the Indian nations. The remainder of former Indian homelands, usually vast tracts, passed into Euro-American control. Whille it may be a surprise to many, Indian connections to these lost lands did not cease. As the papers of this special issue testify, the ceded lands continue to be anchors of essential cultural meaning and to play important roles in the cultural practices of American Indian peoples.

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