One version I've heard is that when the dinosaurs were becoming extinct--during the cataclysmic event that wiped them out from the earth--Native Americans survived by the assistance of an eagle. I think it's interesting how the Native American Indians of this country believed that the eagle that swooped down and picked up one of the persons trying to seek shelter from the flood, brought her back down after the floods subsided and the eagle transformed into a man. The feather that Indians wear on the hair is supposed to be symbolic of this eagle because it is believed that when the eagle transformed itself into a man, one of it's feathers remained in his hair.
On the one hand, Europeans used feathers to write with and on the other hand, Indians believed their feathers to be sacred and wore them on their hair. Somehow, it all seems like a parallel universe. Here's a link to of the Declaration of Independence.