People of various ethnicities and races have influenced the culture, politics, and economics of the region that is now New York State. Before the arrival of Europeans, various native peoples lived there; some spoke dialects of a similar language, while others spoke completely different, though distantly related, languages. In terms of their economy, some native peoples fished, while others hunted game and gathered plants. Politically, they organized at the village level, rather than on a regional or larger level.
When Europeans arrived, they added to this already existing diversity of languages, economic arrangements, and politics.