HILL AIR FORCE BASE, Utah — Since the exploration of the New World and the expansion of the United States of America, the American Indian and Alaska Native people have been woven into American history.

In 2007, the estimated population of American Indians and Alaska Natives was 4.5 million or 1.5 percent of the total U.S. population. Currently, there are 561 federally recognized tribes with an estimated 2 million enrolled.

American Indians and Alaskan Natives have used oral traditions to pass down familial and cultural information among generations for thousands of years.

The diversity of languages, cultures and traditions brought the need for many American Indians and Alaskan Natives to be bi- or multi-lingual.

Some traditions inherent to most, if not all American Indian and Alaskan Native societies, include strength, honor, pride, devotion, and wisdom. These qualities closely correlate with military tradition.

Proclamations issued by Presidents Clinton, George W. Bush and Obama designated November as National American Indian Heritage Month.

As we celebrate the contributions of the American Indians and Alaska Natives, please be encouraged learn more about the cultures, traditions and history.


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