Indians SVG are the common name of the Native American population (except for the Eskimos and Aleutians). The name originated from the misperception of the first European seafarers (Christopher Columbus and others) at the end of the 15th century, who considered their discovery of the Atlantic lands to be India. By anthropological type, Indians belong to the American race. Currently there are about 1,000 Amerindian peoples, and at the end of the 15th century there were about 2,200. The total number of Indians in Latin America by the beginning of the 1990s was 35-40 million, in the United States in the XX century more than 1.5 million, and in Canada 500 thousand Indians SVG and 30 thousand Eskimos.
Modern Indians SVG and Eskimos are genetically close to the inhabitants of Asia. In particular, according to the data of genetic researches of the University of Michigan, genotypes of some Indian tribes are close to genotypes of some peoples of Siberia. It confirms a hypothesis that ancestors of modern Indians and Eskimos have moved to America from Asia. One of the proposed ways of resettlement is considered to be the so-called “Bering Bridge” – an ancient wide isthmus between America and Asia on the site of the current Bering Strait, which disappeared more than 12 thousand years ago. Migration continued between 70,000 B.C. and 12,000 B.C. and had several waves independent of each other. According to a genetic study in 2018, the number of the first migrants from Siberia to America was about 250 people. The level of culture of the first immigrants corresponded to the late Paleolithic and Mesolithic cultures of the Old World. Resettlement of Indians on both continents and development by them of the new grounds stretched many millennia.
The international group of researchers (which included employees of the Institute of Cytology and Genetics of the Siberian Branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences), who studied mitochondrial DNA and Y-chromosomes of modern inhabitants of the Altai Territory, came to the conclusion that Altai should be considered the genetic homeland of the first Americans. Approximately 20-25 thousand years ago, the ancestors of the Indians SVG (as well as probably Chukcha, Koryaks, etc.), who settled in Siberia and eventually reached America, apparently came from there. In the Y-chromosome of the southern Altaians, researchers found unique mutations in the DNA of Native Americans, known as the haplogroup Q. The view of mitochondrial DNA (study of haplogroups C and D in the southern Altaians and haplogroup D in the northern Altaians) yielded similar results.
Before European colonization (started in the 15th century), most tribes in North and South America were at different stages of the tribal system: some were dominated by the mother tribes (Iroquois, Muskogi, Hopi, many tribes of the Amazon basin, etc.), while others formed the father tribes (North-West and South-West tribes of North America, many South American tribes). Some peoples were at different stages of transition from clan to class society. The Indians of Central and South America (Aztecs, Mayans, Incas) lived in class societies.