Ho-Chunk Elders say that history begins with the creation of all things on earth. They say that Ho-Chunk means “People of the Big Voice,” or “People of the Sacred Language.” Ho-Chunks have always occupied lands in Wisconsin, Iowa, Illinois, Nebraska, South Dakota and Minnesota. They have hunted, fished, and gathered plants to provide their food source. The land was sacred because through it, the Creator provided all their needs: food, clothing, lodging and the means for their culture to thrive in its existence. According to oral history, Ho-Chunk people have been in this region since prior to two ice ages, occupying the area around Green Bay in Wisconsin, reaching beyond Lake Winnebago to the Wisconsin River and to the Rock River in Illinois. The tribe hunted, fished, gathered and gardened. A spiritual people, the Ho-Chunk have always respected the land which they call home.