Saint Croix National Scenic Riverway
The Saint Croix National Scenic Riverway is a federally protected system of riverways located in eastern Minnesota and northwestern Wisconsin. It protects 252 miles of river, including the St. Croix River, the Namekagon River, as well as adjacent land along the rivers; the St. Croix National Scenic Riverway is one of the original eight National Wild and Scenic Rivers as a result of legislation by senators Walter Mondale of Minnesota and Gaylord Nelson of Wisconsin; the largest scenic riverway east of the Mississippi River, it lies within parts of eight counties in Wisconsin: Bayfield, Douglas, Polk, St. Croix and Washburn; the upper St. Croix is a nationally renowned smallmouth bass fishery. Other fish species present in the riverway include walleye, northern pike, sturgeon and catfish; the Namekagon River upstream of Hayward, Wisconsin is well known for its brown and brook trout fishing. Besides fishing, the riverway is a popular destination for canoeing, camping and hunting. Camping is provided at dozens of National Park Service-designated sites, at state parks along the river, and, in certain sections, anywhere users wish to camp.
The riverway includes numerous hiking trails, some of which are designated in winter for cross-country skiing. The riverway is managed overall by the National Park Service; the riverway headquarters and main visitors center are located in St. Croix Falls, with an additional visitors center in Trego, Wisconsin operated during the summer. Large areas along both sides of the river are managed by state agencies and include state parks and state forests. Saint Croix State Forest, MN Governor Knowles State Forest, WI Saint Croix State Park, MN Chengwatana State Forest, MN Wild River State Park, MN Interstate Park, MN & WI William O'Brien State Park, MN St. Croix Boom Site, MN Afton State Park, MN Kinnickinnic State Park, WI St. Croix Bluffs Regional Park, MN St. Croix River Namekagon River Saint Croix National Scenic Riverway website
Norwegians are a North Germanic ethnic group native to Norway. They speak the Norwegian language. Norwegian people and their descendants are found in migrant communities worldwide, notably in the United States, Australia, Chile, Brazil, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, South Africa. Towards the end of the 3rd millennium BC, Proto-Indo-European speaking Battle-Axe peoples migrated to Norway bringing domesticated horses, agriculture and wheel technology to the region. During the Viking age, Harald Fairhair unified the Norse petty kingdoms after being victorious at the Battle of Hafrsfjord in the 880s. Two centuries of Viking expansion tapered off following the decline of Norse paganism with the adoption of Christianity in the 11th century. During The Black Death 60% of the population died and in 1397 Norway entered a union with Denmark. In 1814, following Denmark-Norway's defeat in the Napoleonic Wars, Norway entered a union with Sweden and adopted a new constitution. Rising nationalism throughout the 19th century led to a 1905 referendum granting Norway independence.
Although Norway remained neutral in World War I, the country was unofficially allied with the Entente powers. In World War II Norway proclaimed its neutrality, but was nonetheless occupied for five years by Nazi Germany. In 1949, neutrality was abandoned and Norway became a member of NATO. Discovery of oil and gas in adjacent waters in the late 1960s boosted Norway's economic fortunes but in referendums held in 1972 and 1994, Norway rejected joining the EU. Key domestic issues include integration of a fast growing immigrant population, maintaining the country's generous social safety net with an aging population, preserving economic competitiveness; as with many of the people from European countries, Norwegians are spread throughout the world. There are more than 100,000 Norwegian citizens living abroad permanently in the U. S. U. K. and other Scandinavian countries. Norwegian or Norse Vikings travelled north and west and founded vibrant communities in the Faroe Islands, Orkney, Ireland and northern England.
They conducted extensive raids in Ireland and founded the cities of Cork and Limerick. In 947, a new wave of Norwegian Vikings appeared in England. In the 8th century and onwards, Norwegian- and Danish Vikings settled in Normandy, most famously those led by Rollo, thus began the tradition of the Normans, who expanded to England and other Mediterranean islands. Apart from Britain and Ireland, Norwegian Vikings established settlements in uninhabited regions; the first known permanent Norwegian settler in Iceland was Ingólfur Arnarson. In the year 874 he settled in Reykjavík. After his expulsion from Iceland Erik the Red discovered Greenland, a name he chose in hope of attracting Icelandic settlers. Viking settlements were established in the sheltered fjords of the western coast. Erik's relative Leif Eriksson discovered North America. During the 17th and 18th centuries, many Norwegians emigrated to the Netherlands Amsterdam; the Netherlands was the second most popular destination for Norwegian emigrants after Denmark.
Loosely estimated, some 10% of the population may have emigrated, in a period when the entire Norwegian population consisted of some 800,000 people. The Norwegians left with the Dutch trade ships that when in Norway traded for timber, hides and stockfish. Young women took employment as maids in Amsterdam. Young men took employment as sailors. Large parts of the Dutch merchant fleet and navy came to consist of Danes, they took Dutch names, so no trace of Norwegian names can be found in the Dutch population of today. One well-known illustration is that of Admiral Kruys, he was hired in Amsterdam by Peter I to develop the Russian navy, but was from Stavanger, Norway. The emigration to the Netherlands was so devastating to the homelands that the Danish-Norwegian king issued penalties of death for emigration, but had to issue amnesties for those willing to return, announced by posters in the streets of Amsterdam. Dutchmen who search their genealogical roots turn to Norway. Many Norwegians who emigrated to the Netherlands, were employed in the Dutch merchant fleet, emigrated further to the many Dutch colonies such as New Amsterdam.
Many Norwegians emigrated to the U. S. between the 1850s and the 1920s. Today, the descendants of these people are known as Norwegian Americans. According to the 2000 U. S. Census, three million Americans consider Norwegian to be their sole or primary ancestry, it is estimated. Travelling to and through Canada and Canadian ports were of choice for Norwegian settlers immigrating to the United States. In 1850, the year after Great Britain repealed its restrictive Navigation Acts in Canada and more emigrating Norwegians sailed the shorter route to the Ville de Québec in Canada, to make their way to US cities like Chicago and Green Bay by steamer. For example, in the 1850s, 28,640 arrived at Quebec, Canada, en route to the US, 8,351 at New York directly. Norwegian Americans represent 2-3% of the non-Hispanic Euro-American population in the U. S, they live in both the Upper Midwest and Pacific Northwest. As early as 1814, a party of Norwegians was brought to Canada to build a winter road from York Factory on Hudson Bay to the infant Red River settlement at the site of present-day W
Wisconsin is a U. S. state located in the Midwest and Great Lakes regions. It is bordered by Minnesota to the west, Iowa to the southwest, Illinois to the south, Lake Michigan to the east, Michigan to the northeast, Lake Superior to the north. Wisconsin is the 20th most populous; the state capital is Madison, its largest city is Milwaukee, located on the western shore of Lake Michigan. The state is divided into 72 counties. Wisconsin's geography is diverse, having been impacted by glaciers during the Ice Age with the exception of the Driftless Area; the Northern Highland and Western Upland along with a part of the Central Plain occupies the western part of the state, with lowlands stretching to the shore of Lake Michigan. Wisconsin is second to Michigan in the length of its Great Lakes coastline. During the 19th and early 20th centuries, a large number of European settlers entered the state, many of whom emigrated from Germany and Scandinavia. Like neighboring Minnesota, the state remains a center of German American and Scandinavian American culture.
Wisconsin is known as "America's Dairyland" because it is one of the nation's leading dairy producers famous for its cheese. Manufacturing, information technology, cranberries and tourism are major contributors to the state's economy; the word Wisconsin originates from the name given to the Wisconsin River by one of the Algonquian-speaking Native American groups living in the region at the time of European contact. French explorer Jacques Marquette was the first European to reach the Wisconsin River, arriving in 1673 and calling the river Meskousing in his journal. Subsequent French writers changed the spelling from Meskousing to Ouisconsin, over time this became the name for both the Wisconsin River and the surrounding lands. English speakers anglicized the spelling from Ouisconsin to Wisconsin when they began to arrive in large numbers during the early 19th century; the legislature of Wisconsin Territory made the current spelling official in 1845. The Algonquin word for Wisconsin and its original meaning have both grown obscure.
Interpretations vary. One leading theory holds that the name originated from the Miami word Meskonsing, meaning "it lies red", a reference to the setting of the Wisconsin River as it flows through the reddish sandstone of the Wisconsin Dells. Other theories include claims that the name originated from one of a variety of Ojibwa words meaning "red stone place", "where the waters gather", or "great rock". Wisconsin has been home to a wide variety of cultures over the past 14,000 years; the first people arrived around 10,000 BCE during the Wisconsin Glaciation. These early inhabitants, called Paleo-Indians, hunted now-extinct ice age animals such as the Boaz mastodon, a prehistoric mastodon skeleton unearthed along with spear points in southwest Wisconsin. After the ice age ended around 8000 BCE, people in the subsequent Archaic period lived by hunting and gathering food from wild plants. Agricultural societies emerged over the Woodland period between 1000 BCE to 1000 CE. Toward the end of this period, Wisconsin was the heartland of the "Effigy Mound culture", which built thousands of animal-shaped mounds across the landscape.
Between 1000 and 1500 CE, the Mississippian and Oneota cultures built substantial settlements including the fortified village at Aztalan in southeast Wisconsin. The Oneota may be the ancestors of the modern Ioway and Ho-Chunk tribes who shared the Wisconsin region with the Menominee at the time of European contact. Other Native American groups living in Wisconsin when Europeans first settled included the Ojibwa, Fox and Pottawatomie, who migrated to Wisconsin from the east between 1500 and 1700; the first European to visit what became Wisconsin was the French explorer Jean Nicolet. He canoed west from Georgian Bay through the Great Lakes in 1634, it is traditionally assumed that he came ashore near Green Bay at Red Banks. Pierre Radisson and Médard des Groseilliers visited Green Bay again in 1654–1666 and Chequamegon Bay in 1659–1660, where they traded for fur with local Native Americans. In 1673, Jacques Marquette and Louis Jolliet became the first to record a journey on the Fox-Wisconsin Waterway all the way to the Mississippi River near Prairie du Chien.
Frenchmen like Nicholas Perrot continued to ply the fur trade across Wisconsin through the 17th and 18th centuries, but the French made no permanent settlements in Wisconsin before Great Britain won control of the region following the French and Indian War in 1763. So, French traders continued to work in the region after the war, some, beginning with Charles de Langlade in 1764, settled in Wisconsin permanently, rather than returning to British-controlled Canada; the British took over Wisconsin during the French and Indian War, taking control of Green Bay in 1761 and gaining control of all of Wisconsin in 1763. Like the French, the British were interested in little but the fur trade. One notable event in the fur trading industry in Wisconsin occurred in 1791, when two free African Americans set up a fur trading post among the Menominee at present day Marinette; the first permanent settlers French Canadians, some Anglo-New Englanders and a few African American freedmen, arrived in Wisconsin while it was under British control.
Charles Michel de Langlade is recognized as the first settler, establishing a trading post at Green Bay in 1745, moving there permanently in 1764. Settlement began at Prairie du Chien around 1781; the French residents at the trading post in what is now Green Bay, referred to the t
Bloomington is the fifth largest city, as of 2016 estimates, in the U. S. state of Minnesota. It is located in Hennepin County on the north bank of the Minnesota River, above its confluence with the Mississippi River. Bloomington lies 10 miles south of downtown Minneapolis; as of the 2010 census the city's population was 82,893, in 2016 the estimated population was 85,319. Established as a post–World War II housing boom suburb connected to the urban street grid of Minneapolis and serviced by two major freeways, Interstate 35W and Interstate 494, Bloomington's residential areas include upper-tier households in the western Bush Lake area and traditional middle-class families in its rows of single-family homes in the central to eastern portions. Large-scale commercial development is concentrated along the Interstate 494 corridor. Besides an extensive city park system, with over 1,000 square feet of parkland per capita, Bloomington is home to Hyland Lake Park Reserve in the west and Minnesota Valley National Wildlife Refuge in the southeast.
Bloomington has more jobs per capita than either Minneapolis or Saint Paul, due to the United States' largest enclosed shopping center, the Mall of America, the only IKEA in Minnesota. The headquarters of Ceridian, Donaldson Company, HealthPartners and Toro, major operations of Express Scripts, Seagate Technologies and Wells Fargo Bank are based in the city; the city was named after Illinois. In 1839, with renewed conflict with the Ojibwa nation, Chief Cloud Man relocated his band of the Mdewakanton Sioux from Bde Maka Ska in Minneapolis to an area named Oak Grove in southern Bloomington, close to present-day Portland Avenue. In 1843, Peter and Louisa Quinn, the first European settlers to live in Bloomington, built a cabin along the Minnesota River in this area; the government had sent them to teach farming methods to the Native Americans. Gideon Hollister Pond, a missionary, following and recording the Dakota language from Cloud Man's band, relocated that year, establishing Oak Grove Mission, his log cabin.
Pond and his family taught the local Dakota school subjects and farming. Passage across the Minnesota River in Bloomington came in 1849 when William Chambers and Joseph Dean opened the Bloomington Ferry; the ferry remained operational until 1889. Following the Treaty of Traverse des Sioux in 1851, the territory west of the Mississippi River, including Bloomington, was opened to settlers. A group of pioneers settled Bloomington, including the Goodrich and Ames families, they named the area Bloomington after the city they were from, Illinois, which means "flowering field." Most early jobs were in farming and flour milling. The Oxborough family, who came from Canada, built a trading center on Lyndale Avenue and named it Oxboro Heath. Today, the Clover Shopping Center rests near the old trading center site and the nearby Oxboro Clinic is named after them; the Baliff family opened a grocery and general store at what is today Penn Avenue and Old Shakopee Road, Hector Chadwick, after moving to the settlement, opened a blacksmith shop near the Bloomington Ferry.
In 1855, the first public school for all children was opened in Miss Harrison's house with the first school, Gibson House, built in 1859. On May 11, 1858, the day the state of Minnesota was admitted into the union and became a state, 25 residents incorporated the Town of Bloomington. By 1880, the population had grown to 820. In 1892 the first town hall was built at Old Shakopee Road. By the closest Dakota to Minneapolis lived at the residence of Gideon Pond. After 1900, the population surpassed a Bloomington began to transform into a city. With rising population came conflict among citizens over social issues. Among the major issues during this period were parents' unwillingness to dissolve the individual schools for a larger, consolidated school, the fear of mounting taxes. By 1900, there were six rural schools spread throughout the territory with over 200 students enrolled in grades first through eighth. By 1917, the school consolidation issue had been settled; that year voters approved the consolidation of the schools and a year secondary education and school bus transportation began throughout the city.
Telephone service and automobiles appeared. From 1940 to 1960, the city's population increased to nine times that of the population at the turn of the century. During the 1940s the city's development vision was low-cost, low-density housing, each with its own well and septic system; the rapid growth in population was in part due to the post-World War II boom and subsequent birth of the baby boomer generation. In 1947, the first fire station was constructed and equipped at a cost of $24,000 and the Bloomington Volunteer Fire Department was established with 25 members; the 1950s saw a considerable expansion of the city and its infrastructure, with the city shifting away from its small-town atmosphere and feel. In 1950, because of the increasing population, the first elementary school, was built, it was evident that one consolidated school could no longer serve the growing population, ten new schools would be built in this decade as the school system expanded to meet the needs of the citizens. In 1952, the first large business Toro Manufacturing Company, moved to Bloomington.
The significance of this can be seen in Bloomington today, home to hundreds of businesses of all types. In 1953, Bloomington changed from a township to a village form of government; this more professional approach to government was accompanied by open council meetings, land use plans, published budgets. The effects of this new form of government began immed
Minneapolis–Saint Paul is a major metropolitan area built around the Mississippi, Minnesota and St. Croix rivers in east central Minnesota; the area is known as the Twin Cities after its two largest cities, the most populous city in the state, Saint Paul, the state capital. It is an example of twin cities in the sense of geographical proximity. Minnesotans living outside of Minneapolis and Saint Paul refer to the two together as "The Cities". There are several different definitions of the region. Many refer to the Twin Cities as the seven-county region, governed under the Metropolitan Council regional governmental agency and planning organization; the Office of Management and Budget designates 16 counties as the "Minneapolis–St. Paul–Bloomington MN–WI Metropolitan Statistical Area", the 16th largest in the United States; the entire region known as the "Minneapolis–St. Paul MN–WI Combined Statistical Area", has a population of 3,946,533, the 14th largest, according to 2017 Census estimates. Despite the Twin moniker, both cities are independent municipalities with defined borders.
Minneapolis is somewhat younger with more modern skyscrapers downtown, while Saint Paul has been likened to an East Coast city, with quaint neighborhoods and a vast collection of well-preserved late-Victorian architecture. Minneapolis was influenced by its early Lutheran heritage. Saint Paul was influenced by its early French and German Catholic roots; the first European settlement in the region was near what is now known as the town of Stillwater, Minnesota. The city is 20 miles from downtown Saint Paul and lies on the western bank of the St. Croix River, which forms the border of central Minnesota and Wisconsin. Another settlement that began fueling early interest in the area was the outpost at Fort Snelling, constructed from 1820 to 1825 at the confluence of the Minnesota River and the Mississippi River. Fort Snelling held jurisdiction over the land south of Saint Anthony Falls, thus a town known as Saint Anthony grew just north of the river. For several years, the only European resident to live on the south bank of the river was Colonel John H. Stevens, who operated a ferry service across the river.
As soon as the land area controlled by Fort Snelling was reduced, new settlers began flocking across to the new village of Minneapolis. The town grew and Minneapolis and Saint Anthony merged. On the eastern side of the Mississippi, a few villages such as Pig's Eye and Lambert's Landing developed and would soon grow to become Saint Paul. Natural geography played a role in the development of the two cities; the Mississippi River Valley in this area is defined by a series of stone bluffs that line both sides of the river. Saint Paul grew up around Lambert's Landing, the last place to unload boats coming upriver at an accessible point, some seven miles downstream from Saint Anthony Falls, the geographic feature that, due to the value of its immense water power for industry, defined the location of Minneapolis and its prominence as the Mill City; the falls can be seen today from the Mill City Museum, housed in the former Washburn "A" Mill, among the world's largest mills in its time. The oldest farms in the state are located in Washington County, the eastern most county on the Minnesota side of the metropolitan area.
Joseph Haskell was Minnesota's first farmer, harvesting the first crops in the state in 1840 on what is now part of Afton Township on Trading Post Trail. The Grand Excursion, a trip into the Upper Midwest sponsored by the Rock Island Railroad, brought more than a thousand curious travelers into the area by rail and steamboat in 1854; the next year, in 1855, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow published The Song of Hiawatha, an epic poem based on the Ojibwe legends of Hiawatha. A number of natural area landmarks were included in the story, such as Lake Minnetonka and Minnehaha Falls. Tourists inspired by the coverage of the Grand Excursion in eastern newspapers and those who read Longfellow's story flocked to the area in the following decades. At one time, the region had numerous passenger rail services, including both interurban streetcar systems and interstate rail. Due to the width of the river at points further south, the Minneapolis–Saint Paul area was one of the few places where the Mississippi could be crossed by railroad.
A great amount of commercial rail traffic ran through the area carrying grain to be processed at mills in Minneapolis or delivering other goods to Saint Paul to be transported along the Mississippi. Saint Paul had long been at the head of navigation on the river, prior to a new lock and dam facility being added upriver in Minneapolis. Passenger travel hit its peak in 1888 with nearly eight million traversing to and from the Saint Paul Union Depot; this amounted to 150 trains daily. Before long, other rail crossings were built farther south and travel through the region began to decline. In an effort by the rail companies to combat the rise of the automobile, some of the earliest streamliners ran from Chicago to Minneapolis/Saint Paul and served distant points in the Pacific Northwest. Today, the only vestige of this interstate service comes by Amtrak's Seattle/Portland to Chicago Empire Builder route, running once daily in each direction, it is named after James J. Hill, a railroad tycoon who settled on Summit Avenue in Saint Paul at what is now known as the James J. Hill House.
Like many Northern cities that grew up with the Industrial Revolution, Minneapolis and St. Paul experienced shifts in their economic base as heavy industry declined in the 1960s and 1970s. Along with the economic decline of the 60s and 70s came pop
Race and ethnicity in the United States Census
Race and ethnicity in the United States Census, defined by the federal Office of Management and Budget and the United States Census Bureau, are self-identification data items in which residents choose the race or races with which they most identify, indicate whether or not they are of Hispanic or Latino origin. The racial categories represent a social-political construct for the race or races that respondents consider themselves to be and, "generally reflect a social definition of race recognized in this country." OMB defines the concept of race as outlined for the US Census as not "scientific or anthropological" and takes into account "social and cultural characteristics as well as ancestry", using "appropriate scientific methodologies" that are not "primarily biological or genetic in reference." The race categories include both national-origin groups. Race and ethnicity are considered separate and distinct identities, with Hispanic or Latino origin asked as a separate question. Thus, in addition to their race or races, all respondents are categorized by membership in one of two ethnic categories, which are "Hispanic or Latino" and "Not Hispanic or Latino".
However, the practice of separating "race" and "ethnicity" as different categories has been criticized both by the American Anthropological Association and members of US Commission on Civil Rights. In 1997, OMB issued a Federal Register notice regarding revisions to the standards for the classification of federal data on race and ethnicity. OMB developed race and ethnic standards in order to provide "consistent data on race and ethnicity throughout the Federal Government; the development of the data standards stem in large measure from new responsibilities to enforce civil rights laws." Among the changes, OMB issued the instruction to "mark one or more races" after noting evidence of increasing numbers of interracial children and wanting to capture the diversity in a measurable way and having received requests by people who wanted to be able to acknowledge their or their children's full ancestry rather than identifying with only one group. Prior to this decision, the Census and other government data collections asked people to report only one race.
The OMB states, "many federal programs are put into effect based on the race data obtained from the decennial census. Race data are critical for the basic research behind many policy decisions. States require these data to meet legislative redistricting requirements; the data are needed to monitor compliance with the Voting Rights Act by local jurisdictions". "Data on ethnic groups are important for putting into effect a number of federal statutes. Data on Ethnic Groups are needed by local governments to run programs and meet legislative requirements." The 1790 United States Census was the first census in the history of the United States. The population of the United States was recorded as 3,929,214 as of Census Day, August 2, 1790, as mandated by Article I, Section 2 of the United States Constitution and applicable laws."The law required that every household be visited, that completed census schedules be posted in'two of the most public places within, there to remain for the inspection of all concerned...' and that'the aggregate amount of each description of persons' for every district be transmitted to the president."
This law along with U. S. marshals were responsible for governing the census. One third of the original census data has been lost or destroyed since documentation; the data was lost in 1790–1830 time period and included data from: Connecticut, Maryland, New Hampshire, New York, North Carolina, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Delaware, New Jersey, Virginia. Census data included the name of the head of the family and categorized inhabitants as follows: free white males at least 16 years of age, free white males under 16 years of age, free white females, all other free persons, slaves. Thomas Jefferson the Secretary of State, directed marshals to collect data from all thirteen states, from the Southwest Territory; the census was not conducted in Vermont until 1791, after that state's admission to the Union as the 14th state on March 4 of that year. There was some doubt surrounding the numbers, President George Washington and Thomas Jefferson maintained the population was undercounted; the potential reasons Washington and Jefferson may have thought this could be refusal to participate, poor public transportation and roads, spread out population, restraints of current technology.
No microdata from the 1790 population census is available, but aggregate data for small areas and their compatible cartographic boundary files, can be downloaded from the National Historical Geographic Information System. In 1800 and 1810, the age question regarding free white males was more detailed; the 1820
The Irish are a Celtic nation and ethnic group native to the island of Ireland, who share a common Irish ancestry and culture. Ireland has been inhabited for about 12,500 years according to archaeological studies. For most of Ireland's recorded history, the Irish have been a Gaelic people. Viking invasions of Ireland during the 8th to 11th centuries established the cities of Dublin, Waterford and Limerick. Anglo-Normans conquered parts of Ireland in the 12th century, while England's 16th/17th-century conquest and colonisation of Ireland brought a large number of English and Lowland Scots people to parts of the island the north. Today, Ireland is made up of the Republic of the smaller Northern Ireland; the people of Northern Ireland hold various national identities including British, Northern Irish or some combination thereof. The Irish have their own customs, music, sports and mythology. Although Irish was their main language in the past, today most Irish people speak English as their first language.
The Irish nation was made up of kin groups or clans, the Irish had their own religion, law code and style of dress. There have been many notable Irish people throughout history. After Ireland's conversion to Christianity, Irish missionaries and scholars exerted great influence on Western Europe, the Irish came to be seen as a nation of "saints and scholars"; the 6th-century Irish monk and missionary Columbanus is regarded as one of the "fathers of Europe", followed by saints Cillian and Fergal. The scientist Robert Boyle is considered the "father of chemistry", Robert Mallet one of the "fathers of seismology". Famous Irish writers include Oscar Wilde, W. B. Yeats, Samuel Beckett, George Bernard Shaw, Bram Stoker, James Joyce, C. S. Lewis and Seamus Heaney. Notable Irish explorers include Brendan the Navigator, Sir Robert McClure, Sir Alexander Armstrong, Sir Ernest Shackleton and Tom Crean. By some accounts, the first European child born in North America had Irish descent on both sides. Many presidents of the United States have had some Irish ancestry.
The population of Ireland is about 6.3 million, but it is estimated that 50 to 80 million people around the world have Irish forebears, making the Irish diaspora one of the largest of any nation. Emigration from Ireland has been the result of conflict and economic issues. People of Irish descent are found in English-speaking countries Great Britain, the United States and Australia. There are significant numbers in Argentina and New Zealand; the United States has the most people of Irish descent, while in Australia those of Irish descent are a higher percentage of the population than in any other country outside Ireland. Many Icelanders have Scottish Gaelic forebears. During the past 12,500 years of inhabitation, Ireland has witnessed some different peoples arrive on its shores; the ancient peoples of Ireland—such as the creators of the Céide Fields and Newgrange—are unknown. Neither their languages nor the terms they used to describe; as late as the middle centuries of the 1st millennium the inhabitants of Ireland did not appear to have a collective name for themselves.
Ireland itself was known by a number of different names, including Banba, Fódla, Ériu by the islanders and Hiverne to the Greeks, Hibernia to the Romans. Scotland takes its name from Scota, who in Irish mythology, Scottish mythology, pseudohistory, is the name given to two different mythological daughters of two different Egyptian Pharaohs to whom the Gaels traced their ancestry explaining the name Scoti, applied by the Romans to Irish raiders, to the Irish invaders of Argyll and Caledonia which became known as Scotland. Other Latin names for people from Ireland in Classic and Mediaeval sources include Attacotti and Gael; this last word, derived from the Welsh gwyddel "raiders", was adopted by the Irish for themselves. However, as a term it is on a par with Viking, as it describes an activity and its proponents, not their actual ethnic affiliations; the terms Irish and Ireland are derived from the goddess Ériu. A variety of historical ethnic groups have inhabited the island, including the Airgialla, Fir Ol nEchmacht, Fir Bolg, Érainn, Eóganachta, Conmaicne and Ulaid.
In the cases of the Conmaicne, Érainn, it can be demonstrated that the tribe took their name from their chief deity, or in the case of the Ciannachta, Eóganachta, the Soghain, a deified ancestor. This practice is paralleled by the Anglo-Saxon dynasties' claims of descent from Woden, via his sons Wecta, Baeldaeg and Wihtlaeg; the Greek mythographer Euhemerus originated the concept of Euhemerism, which treats mythological accounts as a reflection of actual historical events shaped by retelling and traditional mores. In the 12th century, Icelandic bard and historian Snorri Sturluson proposed that the Norse gods were historical war leaders and kings, who became cult figures set into society as gods; this view is in agreement with Irish historians such as Francis John Byrne. One legend states that the Irish were descended from one Míl Espáine, whose sons conquered Ireland around 1000 BC or