Ethnographers commonly classify indigenous peoples in the United States and Canada into ten geographical regions with shared cultural traits (called cultural areas). The following list groups peoples by the Arctic region. The Arctic culture area is a cold, flat, treeless region (actually a frozen desert) near the Arctic Circle in present-day Alaska, Canada and Greenland. It is home to the Inuit and the Aleut. The Inuit and Aleut groups speak dialects descended from what scholars call the Eskimo-Aleut language family. Because it is such an inhospitable landscape, the Arctic’s population was and is comparatively small and scattered. Some of its peoples, especially the Inuit in the northern part of the region, were nomads, following seals, polar bears and other game as they migrated across the tundra. In the southern part of the region, the Aleut were a bit more settled, living in small fishing villages along the shore. This section provides general information for collective groupings of tribes, bands, and villages who share cultural traits and live in the Arctic geographical region. See Alaskan Natives A to Z for information specific to individual federally recognized tribes or villages in Alaska, which may not apply to all tribes who share their culture group. Click image to enlarge. Location:Alaska, parts of Canada, eastern Siberia (Russia), and GreenlandAlso see: Villages by Region The Arctic Region The Arctic Culture Area spreads across northern North America and is an area which can be described as a cold desert. It is a region which lies above the northernmost limit of tree growth. The area has long, cold winters and short summers. Everything freezes for 9 to 10 months of the year. Cold, icy winters have below freezing temperatures and small amounts of daylight.During the summer, the tundra becomes boggy and difficult to cross, and has long periods of daylight, up to 20 hours a day.The Arctic Region runs across modern northern Canada and the two oceans from modern Siberia to Greenland (5000 miles long). It includes 3 oceans and the Arctic circle. Paleo-Eskimo, prehistoric cultures, Russia, Alaska, Canada, Greenland, 2500 BCE–1500 CE Arctic small tool tradition, prehistoric culture, 2500 BCE, Bering Strait Pre-Dorset, eastern Arctic, 2500–500 BCE Saqqaq culture, Greenland, 2500–800 BCE) Independence I, northeastern Canada and Greenland, 2400–1800 BCE Independence II culture, northeastern Canada and Greenland, 800–1 BCE) Groswater, Labrador and Nunavik, Canada Dorset culture, 500 BCE–1500 CE, Alaska, Canada Aleut (Unangan), Aleutian Islands of Alaska, and Kamchatka Krai, Russia Inuit (Eskimo), Eastern Siberia (Russia), Alaska (United States), Canada, Greenland (Denmark) Thule, proto-Inuit, Alaska, Canada, Greenland, 900–1500 CE Birnirk culture, prehistoric Inuit culture, Alaska, 500 CE–900 CE Greenlandic Inuit people, Greenland Kalaallit, west Greenland Avanersuarmiut (Inughuit), north Greenland Tunumiit, east Greenland Inuvialuit, western Canadian Arctic Iñupiat, north and northwest Alaska Yupik (Yup'ik and Cup'ik), Alaska and Russia Alutiiq people (Sugpiaq, Pacific Yupik), Alaska Peninsula, coastal and island areas of south central Alaska Central Alaskan Yup'ik people, west central Alaska Cup'ik, Hooper Bay and Chevak, Alaska Nunivak Cup'ig people (Cup'ig), Nunivak Island, Alaska Siberian Yupik people, Russian Far East and St. Lawrence Island, Alaska Chaplino Naukan Sirenik, Siberia Arctic California Northeast Great Basin Great Plains NW Coast Plateau Southeast Southwest Sub Arctic
Eskimos are indigenous peoples who have traditionally inhabited the circumpolar region from eastern Siberia (Russia), across Alaska (United States), Canada, and Greenland. There are two main groups that are referred to as Eskimo: Yupik and Inuit. A third group, the Aleut, is related.