Before Columbus discovered America there were a number of people who inhabited the North American continent. Some of the people were Cherokees and Iroquois and a few more races. They were red skinned. They were the original native Americans,
Europeans were more pale skinned than Americans. Columbus set out for discovering a route to India. India was famous at that time. Many of the orient people were referred to as Indians.
After the discovery of Americans, the Europeans addressed the Americans as red Indians. In spite of it not being correct, it continued for a long time. Later, the use of word "red Indians " is banned as it indicates some racial discrimination. The use of words "native Americans" or "American Indians" is recommended.