The American Indians were the first farmers. Corn was first cultivated 7,000 years ago, and beans over 4,000 years ago. Native American Indians taught the settlers how to plant and harvest corn, squash, and beans. This helped to avoid the devastation of starvation, and the vast majority of foods we know today are of Native American origin. In the early days, visitors were invited to enter the longhouse and the women would set food and tobacco in front of him. After the visitor finished his meal, he was then asked the reason for his visit.
Iroquois women were also responsible for the upkeep of the longhouses, the fields, and crops. The women began their work by sowing the seeds, weeding the rows and gathering the crops at harvest time. During the time of planting, the women of the village would offer a prayer over the field, while the men would sometimes chant a prayer.
Furthermore, because women are the carriers of life, they are respected among the Native American people. When researching history, such practices that were passed down as the pipe and drum were placed into the woman’s hand to receive as an outward expression of honor.