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The shaman Tenenisk, whose one parent was a Selk'nam and the other was a household . Image taken by Lucas Bridges around 1899.

The Haush group , also called Manekénk , were the smallest of the four ethnic groups that settled on Tierra del Fuego until the beginning of the 20th century . Originally they were represented all over Tierra del Fuego, but were displaced by the Selk'nam (Ona) in the southeast of the main island, on the Miter peninsula. Like the other indigenous people of Tierra del Fuego, they were almost completely exterminated in the course of settlement by white settlers at the beginning of the 20th century.

Like the Selk'nam, the Haush were hunters, but due to the fact that they lived in the coastal regions, they mainly fed on sea ​​lions . They used fish traps and skewers for fishing, but they also specialized in collecting mussels. They lived mostly in groups of two to three families in huts made of branches covered with sea ​​lion skins. Their way of life can be viewed as a mixture of the Selk'nam and the Yámana . In fact, marriage with these groups was common. Although there was no linguistic relationship between the Yámana and the Haush, the Selk'nam used terms from the Haush language for their grove ceremony , which is believed to be derived in part from a Haush initiation rite. The term Haush is a term in the Yámana language and means seaweed eater , the Selk'nam themselves also called the Haush Ost-Ona.

First evidence of the Haush exists in the evidence of a Spanish expedition in 1619. When James Cook visited Tierra del Fuego in 1769, he reported on the use of European objects in the Haush (mainly recovered from shipwrecks). In the late 19th century, sea lion hunters and prospectors invaded Haush territory, causing the ethnic group to be extinguished through violent attacks and disease. The Argentine ethnographer Lucas Bridges estimated around 60 houses for 1890, which fell to five in 1911. There is no house left today.

See also


  • Anne Chapman , Thomas R. Hester: New Data on the Archeology of the Haush: Tierra del Fuego. In: Journal de la Société des Américanistes, Vol. 62, 1973, pp. 185-208
  • Charles Wellington Furlong: The Haush And Ona, Primitive Tribes Of Tierra Del Fuego . In: Proceedings Of The Nineteenth International Congress Of Americanists, 1915, pp. 432-444, 446f