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Native Americans, also known as American Indians, Indians, Indigenous Americans and other terms, are the indigenous peoples of the United States.

There are over 500 federally recognized tribes within the U.

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By comparison, the indigenous peoples of Canada are generally known as First Nations.

It is not definitively known how or when the Native Americans first settled the Americas and the present-day United States.

The ancestors of modern Native Americans arrived in what is now the United States at least 15,000 years ago, possibly much earlier, from Asia via Beringia.

A vast variety of peoples, societies and cultures subsequently developed.

Since the end of the 15th century, the migration of Europeans to the Americas has led to centuries of population, cultural, and agricultural transfer and adjustment between Old and New World societies, a process known as the Columbian exchange.

As most Native American groups had historically preserved their histories by oral traditions and artwork, the first written sources of the conflict were written by Europeans.

While technically referring to the era before Christopher Columbus' voyages of 1492 to 1504, in practice the term usually includes the history of American indigenous cultures until they were conquered or significantly influenced by Europeans, even if this happened decades or even centuries after Columbus' initial landing.

Native American cultures are not normally included in characterizations of advanced stone age cultures as "Neolithic," which is a category that more often includes only the cultures in Eurasia, Africa, and other regions.

Since the 1960s, Native American self-determination movements have resulted in many changes to the lives of Native Americans, though there are still many contemporary issues faced by Native Americans.

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