“That part wee call New England…but that parte this discourse speaketh of, stretcheth but from Pennobscot to Cape Cod…Southward along the Coast and the Riuers we found Mecadacut, Segocket, Pemmaquid, Nusconcus, Kenebeck, Sagadakock, and Aumonghcawgen; And to those Countries belong the people of Segotago, Paghhuntanuck, Pocopasmm, Taughtanakagnet, Warbigganus, Nassaque, Mashcrosqueck, Wawrigweck, Moshoquen, Wakeogo, Pasharanack, 8tc. To these are allied the Countries of Aucocisco, Accominticus, Passataquack, Aggmoom, and Naemkeck: all these, I could perceiue, differ little in language, fashion, or gouernment: though most be Lords of themselues, yet they hold the Bashabes of Pennobscot, the chiefe and greatest amongst them.
The next I can remember by name are Mattahunts; two pleasant lles of groues, gardens and corne fields a league in the Sea from the Mayne. Then Totant, Massachuset, Pocapawmet, Quonahassit, Sagoquas, Nahapassumkeck, Topeent, Seccasaw, Tothtet, JSasnocomacak,. Accomack, Chawum; Then Cape Cod by which is Pawmet and the He Nawset of the language, and alliance of them of Chawum: The others are called Massachusets; of another language, humor and condition: For their trade and marchandize; to each of their habitations they haue diuerse Townes and people belonging; and by their relations and descriptions, more then 20 seuerall Habitations and Riuers that stretch themselues farre vp into the Countrey, euen to the borders of diuerse great Lakes, where they kill and take most of their Bevers and Otters. From Pennobscot to Sagadahock this Coast is all Mountainous and lles of huge Rocks, but ouergrowen with all sorts of excellent good woodes for building houses, boats, barks or shippes; with an incredible abundance of most sorts of fish, much fowle, and sundry sorts of good fruites for mans vse…Betwixt Sagadahock and Sowocatuck there is but The milium or two or three sandy Bayes, but betwixt that and wyieCape Cod very many: especialy the Coast of the Massachusets is so indifferently mixed with high clayie or sandy cliffes in one place, and then tracts of large long ledges of diuers sorts, and quarries of stones in other places so strangely diuided with trincturetl veines of diuers colours: aSj Free stone for building. Slate for tiling, smooth stone to make Fornaces and Forges for glasse or iron, and iron ore sufficient, conueniently to melt in them: but the most part so resembleth the Coast of Deuonshire, I thinke most of the cliffes would make such limestone: If they be not of these qualities, they are so like, the)' may deceiue a better iudgement then mine; all which are so neere adioyning to those other aduanlages I obserued in these parts, that if the Ore proiie as good iron and steele in those parts, as-1 know it is within the bounds of the Countrey, I dare engage my head (hauing but men skilfull to worke the simples there growing) to haue all things belonging to the building the rigging of ship pes of any proportion, and good marchandize for the fraught, within a square of 10 or 14 leagues: and were it for a good'rewar.de, I would not feare to procure it in a lesse limitation.
And surely by reason of those sandy cliffes and cliffs of rocks, both which we saw so planted with Gardens and Corne fields, and so well inhabited with a goodly, strong and well proportioned people, besides the greatnesse of the Timber growing on them, the greatnesse of the fish and moderate temper of the ayre…”
A Nipmuc History:
[Note: This is a single part of what will be, by my classification, about 240 compact tribal histories (contact to 1900). It is limited to the lower 48 states of the U.S. but also includes those First Nations from Canada and Mexico that had important roles (Huron, Micmac, Assiniboine, etc.).
Feel free to comment or suggest corrections via e-mail. Working together we can end some of the historical misinformation about Native Americans. You will find the ego at this end to be of standard size. Thanks for stopping by. I look forward to your comments...Lee Sultzman]
There never was a Nipmuc tribe as such. Nipmuc is a geographical classification given to the native peoples who lived in central Massachusetts and the adjoining parts of southern New England. They lived in independent bands and villages, some of which at different times were allied with, or subject to, the powerful native confederacies which surrounded them. Massomuck, Monashackotoog, and Quinnebaug were Nipmuck, but they were subject to the Pequot before 1637. In like manner, the Nashaway at one time belonged to the Sokoni and Pennacook, while Squawkeag was originally part of the Pocumtuc.
Villages: Accomemeck (Acoomemeck), Assabet, Attawaugan, Boggistowe, Chabanakonkomun, Cochhituate, Cocatoonemaug, Coweset (see Narragansett), Escoheag (Eascoheage, Easterig), Hadley Indians, Manchaug (Monuhchogok) (see Pequot), Mashapaug (see Massachuset), Massomuck (Wabaquasset, Wappaquasset, Wabiquisset) (see Pequot) (subject to Mohegan after 1637), Medfield, Menemesseg, Metewemesick, Missogkonnog, Monashackotoog (Monoshantuxet) (see Pequot), Musketaquid, Nashua (Nashaway) (see Sokoni and Pennacook), Naukeag, Nichewaug, Nipnet, Pascoag (Paskhoage), Pegan (Piegan), Poniken (Ponnakin), Quaddick, Quahmsit, Quinebaug (Quinnebaug, Quinapeake) (see Pequot), Quinsigamond, Segreganset, Segunesit, Squawkeag (Squaeg) (see Pocumtook), Tatumasket, Totapoag, Wenimesset, Woruntuck, Wunnashowatuckoog (see Pequot), and Wusquowhanaukit.
Praying Indian Villages 1674:Chachaubunkkakowok (Chaubunagungamaug), Hassanamesit, Magunkaquog (Makunkokoag, Magunkook), Manchaug (Monuhchogok), Manexit (Maanexit, Mayanexit, Fabyan), Massomuck (Wabaquasset, Wappaquasset, Wabiquisset) (also Pequot), Nashoba (Nashobah), Okommakamesit (Ockoogameset), Pakachoog (Packachaug), Quabaug (Quaboag), Quantisset (Quinetusset), Wacuntug (Wacuntuc, Wacumtaug), and Washacum.
Praying Indian Villages 1680: Chachaubunkkakowok (Chaubunagungamaug), Hassanamisco, Magunkaquog (Makunkokoag, Magunkook), Manchaug, Manexit (Maanexit, Mayanexit, Fabyan), Massomuck (Wabaquasset, Wabiquisset), Nashobah, Nashaway (Weshacum), Okommakamesit (Ockoogameset), Pakachoog (Packachaug), Quabaug (Quaboag), Quantisset (Quinetusset), Wacuntug (Wacuntuc, Wacumtaug), and Wamesit. There was also small reservation at Hassanamesit.