Story of the First Americans Series

This two-volume series by Suzanne Strauss Art focuses on Native Americans long before Europeans ever touched the Americas. While the history of Native Americans is not often given much space in some history textbooks, it is a long history with a lot of diversity and exciting events. In that vein, these books presents Native American history as a lengthy, chronological story, filled with fascinating details and more in-depth information about Native American civilizations than you'll find in many other texts. Ancient Times begins with the first bands of people who crossed Beringia from Asia (30,000 years ago at the author's estimation) and ends at the 12th century A.D. Native American civilizations are covered geographically in six chapters. Chapter 1 covers man's arrival in America, while Chapters 2-5 cover Mesoamerica, South America, the American Southwest, the Mound Builders of the Midwest, and the Far North and Northwest Coast. Native Americans on the Eve of Discovery picks up where the first book left off and covers Native American civilizations of North America and South America in two parts and ends with the European "Conquest of America" in Part 3. There are five chapters devoted to North America, and these are also divided geographically. They include civilizations of the Northeast, Southeast, Plains, Southwest, and the Far West. Part II includes two chapters on the Incas and Aztecs of South America, and Part III includes one chapter on European discovery of the Americas, and the resulting conflicts and effects on Native American culture and lifestyle. The chapters are fairly lengthy, as they have a lot of ground to cover, and are extremely readable (better than a history textbook!). Each chapter ends with a series of review questions, and suggested projects. Projects include map activities, research opportunities, hands-on activities, and more. You and your children will be amazed at how much there is to learn about Native Americans, their history, and their culture! - Jess

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