Keepers of the Western Door

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The Seneca People: Onondowagah - Keeper Of The Western Door - The Great Hill People

Many Seneca citizens live off-territory, some are located across the country, as well as in other countries. The villages were well fortified with wooden stake fences, just one of the many industrious undertakings.

History of the Iroquois Confederacy - Iroquois Valley Farmland REIT

The people relied heavily on agriculture for food, growing the Three Sisters: corn, beans, and squash, which were known as Deohako, pronounced: Jo- hay- ko "the life supporters. The Senecas were also highly skilled at warfare, and were considered fierce adversaries.

But the Seneca were also renowned for their sophisticated skills at diplomacy and oratory and their willingness to unite with the other original five nations to form the Iroquois Confederacy of Nations. Today the Seneca Nation supports its own people and benefits surrounding communities with a variety of cultural, educational and economic efforts. Its varied enterprises include: world-class casino gaming, hospitality and entertainment, which employ over 3, people, as well as a convenience store chain 4 stores , construction management, and diverse holdings in business ventures. Seneca culture and values remain strong and intact.

National Anthropological Archives Digitized Collections

Language, song, art, dance, and sports are all vital aspects of Seneca culture. Two adjacent families would share one hearth at each compartmental increment.

When the Peacemaker brought the Good Tidings of Peace and Power to the Iroquois, he used the concept of the Longhouse as the symbol of the political and spiritual union of the Iroquois Confederacy. The Mohawks serve as the Keepers of the Eastern Door, the Senecas as Keepers of the Western Door, and the centrally placed Onondagas serve as the Firekeepers; where all Confederate business is transacted.

News and Articles by kahntineta, Mohawk Nation News Publisher

Each nation had its own hearth which symbolized its own domestic government, while the rafters symbolized the laws of the League; that continues to extend with every resolution of the Grand Council of Chiefs. In keeping with this central symbol, the indigenous name for the Iroquois Confederacy and its citizenry; is Haudenosaunee.

The term Haudenosaunee is a variant of a western Iroquoian dialect that is generally translated as the People of the Longhouse. It is in every sense the Constitution of the Haudenosaunee; spawning the beginning of republican democracy in North America and inspiring other nations, particularly the United States of America, to embrace this unique ideology that combines a holistically benevolent approach towards peace and inner peace with a exceptional and practical method of civic problem solving.

There are three levels of government in the Haudenosaunee Confederacy; each with its own jurisdiction and authority. Village Council Fire Historically, each village of the Mohawk Nation had a series of political forums and councils.

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There were councils for each clan, men and women, as well as a general council for all members of the village. These councils served as outlets for the people to express their opinions on a variety of issues. Operating in the same fashion as the Mohawk Nation Council, decision making amongst the Council of the Chiefs is conducted according to clan protocols and is consensus based. Hundreds of years ago, when longhouses were still employed as living quarters for the Iroquois, there was at least one lodge in the village that was used as their Council House; where political and social gatherings took place.

Native American Tribes of New York

Today, political gatherings and councils take place at the village Longhouse. Some Iroquois communities actually have more than one Longhouse today. It must be noted that each community may have a slight variation in its organization. For example, it is quite common for different communities or Longhouses to have a different seating pattern for their councils. The Mohawk National Council is composed of nine chieftainship titles, representing nine extended clan families from across Mohawk Nation Territory.

A Clanmother also has the authority to remove her Chief from office. The jurisdiction of the Mohawk National Council is limited within its territory and must adhere to the resolutions passed by the Haudenosaunee Grand Council of Chiefs. However, these nine chiefs have permanent seats on the Haudenosaunee Grand Council of Chiefs.