Some eastern woodlands nations joined together in confederacies. A confederacy is an alliance, and its members work together for common interests. They fight together against common enemies.
Five of the Iroquois nations had a very special relationship. They were the Mohawk, the Oneida, the Onondaga, the Cayuga, and the Seneca. They lived near one another in what is now New York State. Well before Europeans came to North America, they organized the Iroquois League. The goal was to promote peace among themselves. Their system of government was so good, it inspired the framers of the U.S. Constitution. Benjamin Franklin wrote that the new United States could learn a lot about political unity from the Iroquois League.