Wednesday, April 20, 2016

1666 - Resumption of Indian Wars

Iroquois warriors in ambush
February, 1666 - Governor of New York Richard Nicholls, confirms letters patent granted since 1645 to the village of Flushing in the Queens.

Daniel de Courcelles (1620-1698)
Governor of New France
February 20, 1666
– Having left Quebec heading a detachment of 600 men, the governor of New France Daniel de Courcelles (1620-1698) reaches the village of Shenectady, 20 miles upstream from Albany, after facing the harshness of winter. He aims at chasing the Iroquois that the French regard as their worst enemies but causes a diplomatic mess by moving, apparently unknowingly, into territories under the duke of York.

Having followed for days trails of the Indians, the French scouts thought they had control of the situation when sixty of their gunmen fell in an ambush. About two hundred Iroquois warriors went out of the forest and came upon the soldiers. They killed eleven before withdrawing to the arrival of the main force leaving three dead in their ranks. They were seen a few days later in Albany holding four French scalps.
After explaining that he had no intention of invading the English province but had got lost while pursuing the Indians, Courcelles accepted for his part the English hospitality of and was sheltered at Shenectady thanks to Governor Arent Van Curler, the time for him to treat his wounded. He used, however, a quick thaw to return hastily to Quebec. His risky adventure ended in a failure, the Iroquois foe remaining evasive.

March 6, 1666 - Richard Nicholls confirms the letters patent granted in 1652 to the village of Newtown.

March 13, 1666 - Governor Nicholls recognizes by letters patent the city of East Hampton in Suffolk County.

March 20, 1666 - Governor Richard Nicholls abolishes the one-tenth duty levied on all the exchange of goods between Delaware and New York, a system inherited from the former Dutch colonization, that he considers an obstacle to trade development.

This decision also was the fact that during the first two years of English administration, trade had considerably decreased, not only in the former New Netherlands colony, but in all North American territories because of the war between the two countries. In particular, fur and tobacco overseas trade was mostly in the hands of Dutch merchants.

April, 1666 - John Winthrop, Jr. is re-elected governor of Connecticut.

April 10, 1666 - Samuel Maverick hands to Governor Richard Bellingham, a letter of King Charles II inviting the Massachusetts Council to send to England a deputation of five people, including himself and his secretary Hawthorne, to give some explanation about the conduct of the colony.
A special Court meets the next day to examine the contents of this letter. It concludes 
useless the king’s request is . 

May, 1666 - Richard Bellingham is re-elected governor of Massachusetts.

He was praised for his integrity but his stubbornness to defend at all costs the charter of Massachusetts might result in enforcement action against his government, although the recall to London of the commissioners appeared then as a victory.

May, 1666 - William Brenton is elected for the second time president of the royal colony of Rhode Island.

May, 1666 - Settlers from Massachusetts and New Hampshire move to the province of New Jersey, south of Elizabethtown where they found the cities of Woodbridge and Piscataway.

May, 1666 - Impressed by the military campaign led during winter by the French, Mohawks choose to start negotiations. Governor Nicholls promises to intervene on their behalf if they succeed in making peace with Mahicans and northern tribes.

They sent, for this purpose, delegates to Quebec and Hartford, but the talks had not yet begun that warriors of their tribe staged a raid to Norwottuck causing premature cancellation of the conference. Met in Hartford, the leaders of the region, representing the Mahicans, Sokokis, Pocumtucks, and Podunks decided, in retaliation, to undertake a punishment party to the Mohawk country. They received for that support from the Pascataway and Penacooks, traditionally opposed to Iroquois.

June 3, 1666 - Thomas Prence is re-appointed for one more year governor of Plymouth while Josias Winslow and Thomas Southwork are chosen as commissioners to the United Colonies.

June, 1666 - Thomas Delavall succeeds Thomas Willett as mayor of New York.

Thomas Delavall (? -1683) - this Londoner had made a career in the army. He served as officer under colonel Richard Nicholls and took part to the fall of New Amsterdam in September, 1664. Gone into business, he was soon considered as a skilful administrator and an opportunistic contractor. He held the position of Receiver General of the New York colony before becoming mayor of the city.

June, 1666 - Virginia Governor Willam Berkeley orders the Rappahanock County militia to attack and exterminate all the Indians who are within its reach, and to sell as slaves the women and children.

Since 1661, the settlers living in the Upper Rappahanock area were victims of repeated attacks by Indians and mediating efforts had, until then, no effect. 

soldiers of the Carignan-Salières regiment
June 20, 1666
- the soldiers of the Carignan-Salières regiment commanded by captain Pierre La Mothe de Saint-Paul build Fort Ste Anne, near Lake Champlain. It is located in full Iroquois territory what constitutes, from the French, a real forwardness.

The Iroquois retaliated to provocation and attacked the small garrison, killing three, including Mr. Chasy and taking four prisoners. This fort was built on the Isle la Motte where Samuel Champlain had landed in July, 1609.

Charles Calvert, Lord Baltimore
Governor of  Maryland
June 29, 1666 – A conference is held at St John between Susquehannock Indian delegates and representatives of Maryland including Governor Charles Calvert, his brother Philip, the secretary Richard Broughton and councillor Henry Coursey.

The eight Susquehannock emissaries represented each the various tribes and larger families of their nation as the Wolf and Terrapin.
During this conference, Wastahanda Hariguera of the Terrapin clan and Gosweingwerakqua of the Fox clan mentioned the case of Wanahedana, a member of their tribe accused of killing a settler in Baltimore County who had since taken refuge with the Senecas, hoping that his crime would not rain down upon the whole tribe and reminded that the Susquehannocks had lost many of theirs securing the Maryland plantations against the incursions of the same Senecas. They explained that the latter intended, in August, to destroy the Susquehannock fort and attack the English. It was accordingly decided that the  Maryland authorities would send 50 soldiers under the orders of captain Obder, to support Susquehannock in their war against Senaca.

In his book entitled "A Character of the Province of Maryland" plubished in 1666, George Aslop writes that the people of Maryland considered Susquehannocks as "the noblest and the most heroic Indian nation that lived on the land of America" and that the other Indians held them in high esteem. He adds that being mostly valiant warriors, the fact of enjoying a peaceful life does not prevent them from keeping all the tribes around them at bay. He also reports that the men, women and children live almost naked summer and winter alike; that they paint their face with red, green, white and black stripes; that their skin is naturally clear but they color it in brown through various roots and barks. They had long and thick black hair but depilate all the rest of the body: some are made tattoos on the body, chest and arms, depicting among others animals.

July 12, 1666 - Maryland and Virginia authorities represented by Major General Richard Bennett, Captain Joseph Bridger and Thomas Ballard sign in James City, in the presence of Governor William Berkeley, an agreement intended to suspend tobacco growing for one year, in order to sell the surplus. 

July 10, 1666 – The General Council of Virginia decides to openly declare war on the tribes living along the river. These are Doeg, Nansemond (probably related to Powhatan), Portobacco and Patawomeck. The Rappahanock militia receives from the governor of Virginia the order to exterminate the Indians of the region, to capture their women and children to sell them as slaves.

Actually, the outcome of this war remained uncertain but after that date, the English documents did not mention any more Patawomeck. Doeg appeared, a few years later, to have settled in Maryland, on the northern side of the Potomac.
Very little is known about the campaigns led by local militias against the nearby tribes. Decimated for a while, the Indian people were no more than 3000 while the settlers were ten times more numerous. Facing so uneven fight, it is likely that the Natives chose to move further west or to integrate with other tribes.

July 14, 1666 - During a reconnaissance mission, Lieutenant Colonel Robert Sanford, the secretary of the Lords Proprietors of Clarendon County, discovers Port Royal, not far from the Cape Fear, on the coast of Carolina. He there notes the richness and fertility of the soils as well as the quality of rivers.

July 31, 1666 - Governor Richard Bellingham and the Massachusetts Council order Benjamin Gillan, captain of the Mary Ruth to seize all the French or Dutch ships in the area and to bring them back toBoston so that their commanders are legally judged.

Summer, 1666 - a smallpox epidemic strikes the people of Boston, killing 40.

August 7, 1666 – In Springfield, John Pynchon is informed that an army of 900 Mohawk and Seneca warriors has just regrouped and moves eastward. It is actually only a rumor.

The climate was particularly tense in New England since French Captain Pierre de Sorel had led an expedition against Mohawk villages. It has failed but enough impressed the Indians and the English so that they plan to prepare an attack against Canada. The tribes of the Connecticut valley found on the contrary better to delay and nothing was done.

John Pynchon (Springfield,  Essex, Engl. 1626 - 1703) – The son of William Pynchon, he had arrived in New England with his family at the age 4. They had first settled down at Roxbury before moving to Springfield, a new town founded by his father William in 1636, at an important trading crossroad on the Connecticut River. At 26, John took over with his father, eager to finally return to England and now devoted to the development of the family company specialized in fur trade. He created branches in Boston and the Barbados and even set up his own fleet of ships to transport his goods to England.

August 22, 1666 - foundation of Somerset County, Maryland, between Watkins Point and Pocomoke, in the border area with Virginia, until recently disputed by Edmund Scarborough.

September 11, 1666 - The General Court of Massachusetts asks Deputy-Governor Francis Willoughby to send to England two huge masts for Royal Navy, a present planned to be offered " as a term of loyalty and endearment ".

Francis Willoughby (London 1612/14 - Charlestown (MA) April 6, 1671) - his father William had been an officer in Charles 1st’s  army before being appointed commissioner of the Royal Navy in Portsmouth. Francis moved, for his part, in 1638 to New England and settled in Charlestown. He opted first for a commercial career sharing his time between America and England then acceded to the position of commissioner to the Navy in 1651. He served in Portsmouth until 1662 while keeping a part of his business at Charlestown. Back in the colony, he was appointed deputy-governor of Massachusetts, a position he held from 1665 to 1667 and from 1668 to 1670. He is credited with publishing a book entitled " The Daily Observation of an Impassioned Puritan".

September 13, 1666 - Engeltjie Hendricks, a resident of New York is convicted of infanticide and sentenced to hanging.

This death sentence was in fact the outcome of a mere news item. Engel Hendricks had been already condemned, one year earlier, for the same crime but she had only be punished by lashing and evicted from the town. Yet, the fact that she succeeded meanwhile in escaping from prison had for this second trial, made her judges adamant.
Nobody ignored the extreme strictness of the " Duke’s Laws", threatening with death penalty often minor offenses such as, for a child, beating his parents but the enforcement of capital punishment remained however exceptional.

Alexandre de Prouville (1603-1670)
Marquis de Tracy

Lieutenant-General of New France
October 16, 1666 - Governor of New France Alexandre de Prouville, Marquis de Tracy (1603-1670) enters the province of New York leading an army of 1000 soldiers, 600 militiamen and hundred Algonquian and Huron Indians. He burns several Mohawk villages, of which Andarague. 

Having concluded a peace with Seneca and Oneida, he claimed the Iroquois territory for King Louis XIV and sought to destroy all the crops stored up for winter by the Indians. These were able to take refuge in the forest but would be hit, further to this episode, by starvation, killing nearly 400 victims.
Short of reserves on the way home, the French had to survive on wild chestnuts, abounding in autumn.

A career soldier, the Marquis de Tracy had proved himself on European battlefields before being appointed Lieutenant General of all French colonies in America. He had received from Colbert the order to put an end to the threat of the Iroquois Nation, accused of hindering the evangelization of peaceful Indian tribes, diverting furs to the English and slaughtering regularly French settlers.

October, 1666 - John Cotton, Jr., the son of famous Reverend John Cotton died in Boston in 1652, is appointed minister of the church of Plymouth.

John Cotton, Jr. (1639-1699)
John Cotton, Jr. (Boston (MA) March 15, 1639 - Charleston (SC) September 18, 1699) - he was barely fourteen years old when he lost his father and was placed under the protection of Rev. Samuel Stone who taught him theology. He graduated from Harvard College in 1657 and preached in Wethersfield from 1659 to 1663 before heading to Boston to try to find a responsibility in his father’s church. He was soon excommunicated for immoral conduct and went to teach during two years on Martha's Vineyard where he became familiar with Indian language. He preached a moment with Thomas Mayhew but was asked to give up because of disagreements emerged between the two men.

October 24, 1666 - Timothy Hatherly dies at Scituate, in Plymouth colony of, at age 78.

He had been in 1634 the founder of this city which formed the border with Massachusetts. Hatherly had, on the other hand, held various official positions with the governor and had been appointed a few times commissioner of Plymouth to the United Colonies of New England. He apparently left no offspring but most members of his family had gradually come to New England.

October 3, 1666 - 64 Puritans from Branford and Milford, Connecticut led by Robert Treat, sign the foundation act of the Newark plantation, on the Passaic River, New Jersey.

The first families had moved in May, but difficulties had soon arisen with the Hackensack Indians, owners of the place and reluctant to give up this portion of their territory. Governor Philip Carteret, who lived in the nearby village of Elizabethtown, had been consulted by Robert Treat but wanted the newcomers to deal directly with the Indians, despite his goodwill towards them. The transactions had begun but dragged on while new families still arrived.
The compensation on which both parts had got on concerned a list of supplies including " 50 handfuls of powder, 100 lead ingots, 20 axes, 20 coats, 10 guns, 20 pistols, 10 kittles, 10 swords, 4 blankets, 4 kegs of beer, 10 pairs of breeches, 50 knives, 900 fathoms of wampum, 2 ankors of liquor and 3 soldier coats…”

November 24, 1666 - Lord Baltimore vetoes the draft suspension of tobacco growing in his colony.

This decision cancelled the agreement previously signed with the Virginia authorities on July 12.

1666 - After publishing, three years earlier, his translation of the Bible in Wampanaog, John Eliot issues in Cambridge (Massachusetts) an Indian Grammar in which he tries to codify the rules of Algonquian language for all those who wish to teach the Gospel to the Indians.

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