What is a Wetu and a Nush Wetu?
Wetus were used during the summer and warmer seasons. They were built near the wooded coast where cool breezes came off the ocean and the people were closer to the ocean for seasonal fishing and other food gathering. Described in a moment of humor Mashpee Wampanoag Tribal member, Annawon Weeden said, "They were the ultimate beachfront condos!"
Wetus were typically made from cedar saplings that are set in holes in the ground, then bent and fastened together into a frame. The frame was traditionally covered with mats of loosely woven reeds like cattails designed to let the cool summer breezes flow through. And since they were circular in shape the air circulated freely.
These are photos were taken inside wetus at Plimoth Plantation
This is a nush wetu
In winter the Wampanoag would move inland and built larger multifamily homes called nush wetu meaning house with three fires. They are sometimes called longhouses in English.