AskDefine | Define Shoshonean

Dictionary Definition

Shoshonean n : a subfamily of Uto-Aztecan languages spoken mainly in the southwestern United States [syn: Shoshonean language, Shoshonian, Shoshonian language]

Extensive Definition

The Shoshone ( or ) are a Native American tribe with three large divisions: the Northern, the Western and the Eastern.
The Northern Shoshone are concentrated in eastern Idaho, western Wyoming, and north-eastern Utah. The Eastern lived in Wyoming, northern Colorado and Montana. Conflict with the Blackfoot, Crow, Lakota, Cheyennes, and Arapahos pushed them south and westward after about 1750. The Western ranged from central Idaho, northwestern Utah, central Nevada, and in California about Death Valley and Panamint Valley. This group is sometimes called the Panamint. The Idaho groups of Western Shoshone were called Tukuaduka (sheep eaters), while the Nevada/Utah ones were called the Gosiute or Toi Ticutta (cattail eaters).
Possibly the most famous member of the Shoshone tribe was Sacajawea who accompanied the Corps of Discovery with Meriwether Lewis and William Clark in their exploration of the Western United States. The estimated population of Northern and Western Shoshone was 4,500 in 1845. 3,650 Northern Shoshone and 1,201 Western Shoshone were counted in 1937 by the United States Bureau of Indian Affairs.


The Northern Shoshone fought conflicts with settlers in Idaho in the 1860s which included the Bear River Massacre and again in 1878 in the Bannock War. They fought alongside the United States Army in the 1876 Battle of the Rosebud against their traditional enemies, the Lakota and Cheyenne.
In 1911 a small group of Bannock under a leader named "Shoshone Mike" killed four ranchers in Washoe County, Nevada. A posse was formed, and on February 26, 1911, they caught up with the band, and eight of them were killed, along with one member of the posse, Ed Hogle. Three children and a woman who survived the battle were captured. The remains of some of the members of the band were repatriated from the Smithsonian Institution to the Fort Hall Idaho Shoshone-Bannock Tribe in 1994.
In 1982, the Western Shoshone, who also invited "unrepresented tribes," made a declaration of sovereignty and began issuing its own passports as the Western Shoshone National Council.
In 2008, the Shoshone Nation acquired the site of the Bear River Massacre.


Shoshonean in Catalan: Xoixon
Shoshonean in German: Shoshone
Shoshonean in Spanish: Shoshone
Shoshonean in French: Shoshone
Shoshonean in Croatian: Šošoni
Shoshonean in Italian: Shoshoni
Shoshonean in Norwegian: Shoshone
Shoshonean in Low German: Shoshone
Shoshonean in Polish: Szoszoni
Shoshonean in Finnish: Shoshonit
Shoshonean in Swedish: Shoshoner
Shoshonean in Tamil: சோஷோன்
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