The traditions of the Potawatomi honor the Four Directions of East, South, North and West during prayer, during ceremony and throughout the day. Each direction has unique significance. This is the path I take during my day and throughout the seasons.
Each Indigenous nation has its own creation story. Some stories tell that the Potawatomi have always been here.
Other stories tell of migration from the Eastern seaboard with the Ojibwe and Odawa Nations. The three tribes loosely organized as the Three Fires Confederacy, with each serving an important role.
The Ojibwe were said to be the Keepers of Tradition.
The Odawa were known as the Keepers of the Trade.
The Potawatomi were known as the Keepers of the Fire.
Later, the Potawatomi migrated from north of Lakes Huron and Superior to the shores of the Mitchigami or Great Lake. This location—in what is now Wisconsin, southern Michigan, northern Indiana, and northern Illinois—is where European explorers in the early 17th century first came upon the Potawatomi; they called themselves Neshnabek, meaning the original or true people.