"Some of the tribes that are in New York include the Mohawk, Oneida, Onondaga, Cayuga, Seneca and more. Each Native American tribe has their own creation story, just like how Christianity has Adam and Eve and God, Native Americans have their own story describing how humans and the world came to be. The Iroquois story is as followed:
There never was an earth, just an abyss of water with a community that existed above it called the Sky World. In Sky World lived a woman who was a dreamer and one night she had a frightening dream about a tree that was the source of light. The dream scared her so much, she went and asked the men to pull up this tree. So the men dug around the tree to create more light, but the tree fell through the whole that they made and because of this, everything fell to darkness. The men, in distraught, pushed the woman through the hole as well and she would have fallen into the water abyss if not for a fish hawk that caught her and saved her, using it's feathers has a pillow.
But the hawk could not keep her up on his own; he had to ask for help. So a helldiver went down to the bottom of the sea and, using his beak, brought back up mud. Then he found a turtle and smeared the mud on its shell, then dived back down for more mud. The ducks even helped out by bringing the ocean floor up to the turtle's shell.
The beavers made the shell bigger, building its terrain. The animals and birds all helped to build continents until eventually the Earth was created and it was big and round. All this time, the woman was sitting on the turtles back and the turtle was still there, supporting and holding Earth on its back."
Get the Story:
Jaliza Burwell: Native stories
(The Clarkston Integrator 11/10)