- Indians had no general name for the white man, except "Pale Face," which
the white man himself gave them. Different tribes called the white
man by some term which referred to his personal appearance, his arrival
in ships, his arms or his clothes, his actions, or perhaps the merchandise
he brought with him to trade.
Many tribes used a term to indicate that
the white man's skin was a lighter color than their own. The Arapaho
called a white man "yellow hide," or "white skinned." The Miami spoke
of the white man as "he of the hairy chest." The Delaware called
him "person from the salt (sea)."
The Navajo used the word "Belagana," which
was their pronunciation of the Spanish word Americano. The
Iroquois, besides using a term which meant white skin, also called the
white man a name meaning "he makes axes." The Wyandot used the terms
"morning-light people" and "big knife."
To the Kiowa the white man were "hairy
mouths," also "ears sticking out." To the Comanche they were "easterners."
Among the Sioux the white man was "iron maker," "rich people," as well
as "long knife" or "big knife." "Long knife" was used by eastern
Indians to denote American colonists, and the British were called "coat
within this Site
Names ][ Long Knives ]