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Oct 20, 2012 - Doxtator Stories    2 Comments

Indian Students at Eleazar Wheelock’s Moor Charity School

By Caroline K. Andler

Reverend Eleazar Wheelock, Congregational minister, orator, educator, and founder of Dartmouth College. in 1733, graduated from Yale College. He continued his theological studies at Yale until he was licensed to preach in May of 1734, and installed as pastor of the Second Congregational Church of Lebanon, Conn. in February of 1735. He served as their minister for 35 years. He participated fully and enthusiastically in the Great Awakening, which had begun to sweep the Connecticut River Valley around the time of his graduation from Yale. He was one of its greatest proponents in Connecticut, serving as the “chief intelligencer of revival news”.

In 1743, he took in a student named Samson Occom (husband of my fifth great grand aunt), a Mohegan who knew English, and had been converted to Christianity in his childhood. Samson writes in his manuscript, “ At this time my Poor Mother was going to Lebanon, and having some knowledge of Mr. Wheelock and Learning that he had a number of English Youth under his Tuition I had a great Inclination to go to him and to be with him a week or a Fortnight, and Desired my Mother to Ask Mr. Wheelock whether he would take me a little while to Instruct me in Reading. Mother did so, and when she came back, she said Mr. Wheelock wanted to see me as soon as possible. So I went up thinking I should be back again in a few days. When I got up there, he received me with kindness & compassion, & instead of staying a Fortnight or 3 weeks, I spent 4 years with him.”

Eleazar’s success in preparing Occom for the ministry encouraged him to found a charity boarding school for Native American Indians, with the purpose of instilling, in the boys, elements of secular and religious education, so that they could return to their native culture as missionaries. The girls were to be taught “housewifery” and writing. The school was to be supported by charitable contribution. His plans to educate the young Native American students in his Charity School did not progress well however – many of his students became sick and died while some turned profligate and in other ways failed to successfully pursue the charter of missionary work. The school was located in Lebanon, CT. At the site of the original school are several plaques and historical markers commemorating the location. Portions of the original school building remain, but in a form much changed from the original. The site is now an historical landmark in Columbia, CT, which was formed from Lebanon.

Timetable for Moor Charity School

1743-1748 Samson Occom, Mohegan, was the first of Eleazer Wheelock’s pupils. In 1754, missionary John Brainerd sent Jacob Woolley and John Pumshire of the Delawares to Wheelock’s school. Pumshire was fourteen and Wooly an eleven year old. 1757 – The third to attend was Samson Woyboy (Wauby), a Groton Pequot, probably a cousin of Samson Occom. He had been brought up by an English family. Before coming to Wheelock he had taught an Indian School at Mushantuxet, but “gave up to one who could write and cipher better.” He entered February 8, and withdrew after nineteen weeks because of “bodily infirmities of long standing.” In 1759 he taught again at Mushantuxet, and in 1760 at Stonington. In 1762 he was a soldier, and died a few years later, perhaps while still in service. (Love 63-64).

Two Delawares, Hezekiah Calvin and Joseph Woolley, enrolled in 1757. Joseph Woolley was described as “of middling capacity, naturally modest and something bashful,” and Hezekiah Calvin as a “smart little fellow, who loves play”. They remained at the Indian school for eight years. Woolley worked with Samuel Kirkland with the Six Nations and Calvin taught among the Mohawks for awhile.

Amy Johnson, Joseph Johnson, Aaron Occom, Isaiah Uncas and David Fowler were the next five pupils. All but David Fowler were Mohegans. Fowler was a Montauk. Isaiah Uncas was the sob of Sachem Ben Uncas 3d Joseph Johnson and Amy, his sister, were of a prominent Mohegan family. The councilor to the Uncas family was their uncle, Zachary Johnson. Their father, Joseph was a captain of Indian scouts in the French and Indian War. When Joseph was fifteen he was sent to the Oneidas as a schoolmaster. David Fowler was older than the other students and had already been taught by his brother- in- law, Samson Occom, at Montauk.

Three Mohawks enrolled in 1761 – Joseph, Negyes and Center. Negyes and Center quickly became ill and were returned home.

Joseph was Joseph Brant who was born in 1742 along the Ohio River. His Indian name was Thayendanegea. He attended Moor’s Charity School for Indians in Lebanon, Connecticut, while still a boy. Brant learned English and white customs as a student there. His brother-in-law, British General Sir William Johnson, financed Brant’s education. Johnson hoped Brant would provide him with assistance in negotiating with the Indians residing in the northeastern English colonies. The French and Indian War interrupted his education. Johnson withdrew the thirteen-year-old Brant from school to assist him against the French and their native allies. Brant returned to the school following the conflict. It was at Moor’s Charity School for Indians that Brant converted to the Anglican faith. He would eventually serve as a missionary among the Indians for the Anglican Church. Upon graduating from school, Brant served as an interpreter for Johnson and his eventual successor, Guy Johnson.

Eight Oneidas attended the school.

  • Little Peter was the son of the late Oneida Chief, Gawke.
  • David, Oneida. Returned to his tribe in 1766.
  • Jacob, Oneida. Went home in the spring of 1767; brought back to the school in the fall of the same year.
  • Mundius, was reported as late as 1772 as teaching in the Oneida country.
  • Hannah Thomas, a daughter of the Oneida Deacon, Thomas, was a pupil.

In 1769, Thomas removed all the Oneidas from the school. None of them had attended school for even three years.

1761 Miriam Storrs (Store) , an eleven year old Delaware, she remained at the school for three years. In a small, hand-sewn memo booklet, Rev. Eleazar Wheelock, wrote down the clothing ration issued to Miriam Store: “One pair of shoes… 5 yards and ½ of course (osnaberg)…9 yards and ¼ of salt sacking…a measure of muslin for an apron” Wheelock, in a letter of Nov. 16, 1761, described Miriam as “an amiable little black savage Christian”.

Between 1761 and 1769, Wheelock enrolled some 16 Indian girls at Moor’s School. They came from the nearby Algonquin tribes of the Narragansett, Mohegan, Niantic, and Pequot, and the Delaware, also two Iroquois tribes, the Mohawks and the Oneidas, due to the influenence of Sir William Johnson, sent some boys.

Moses, Mohawk.

1762 Sarah Wyyog, Mohegan

Enoch Closs, Delaware. Ran away in 1765.

Samuel Tallman, Delaware. According to Love (69-70) he “became a carpenter, lived among the New England Indians, being at one time at Stockbridge, and was eventually associated with them in the westward migration.”

Daniel Mossock, of the Tunxis tribe, son of Solomon Mossock, a prominent family at Farmington. Remained only a few months. He was a soldier during the Revolution and became a party to the Brothertown emmigration.

1763 Hannah Poquiantup, Niantic. “Went away a few months after” (Wheelock’s note).

Hannah Garret, Pequot, resident among the Narragansetts. Married David Fowler, 1766.

Mary and John Secatur, children of the prominent Narragansett, John Secetur, both were involved with Joseph Johnson and Samson Occom in the Brothertown emmigration plans.

1764 William Primus, Mohawk. Said to have been the natural son of Sir William Johnson and Molly Brant. Sent home December 10, 1766. Primus died fighting against the Americans in the Revolution. (Love 68).

1766 John Green, Seth, Mohawks. was probably the son of the Mohawk chief. Johanas became an interpretor for white missionaries. Moses, Johanas, Peter, William Secundus, Abraham Primus/Major-Minor, and Abram Secundus were all approved as schoolmasters.

1767 Patience Johnson, Mohegan. Dismissed.

1768 Among the New England Indians students were Hannah Nonesuch – daughter of Mohegans Joshua and Hannah Nonesuch; Nathan Clap, a Cape Cod Indian.

Samuel Ashpo, Mohegan, was the son of Ashobapow and taught at the Indian school at Mushantuxet until 1757, when he went into the government service as an interpreter. In 1759 he returned to Mushantuxet to teach and be their minister.

Jacob Fowler, Montauk, younger brother of David Fowler was the school master at Groton in 1775. Jacob Fowler was one of the original trustees at Brothertown.

Pious Sarah Simons had five children whom she sent to Eleazar Wheelock’s

school before the war of 1775. Her two sons were with the first who went with

Mr. Wheelock from Lebanon, Connecticut to New Hampshire to the first sessions

at Dartmouth College. This college was named from Lord Dartmouth who helped

to raise money to found the school for Indians. The New England Indians

were anxious for education as soon as they saw the white man knew more than

they about certain things. Among those most anxious for educations were the

Narragansetts. Emanuel went to Wheelock’s school April 10th, 1763

and Sarah came in December 1765. James entered in 1767 and later pastored at

the Narrangansett Church. He also enlisted in 1775 and fought in the

Revolutionary War.

Abraham Simons entered school in 1768 and succeeded Jacob Fowler as

school master at Groton in 1775. Daniel entered in 1768, was the first to receive a degree and only Indian educated by Wheelock to receive a degree during the educator’s life. He also

preached in 1778 and taught at Stockbridge in 1783 and succeeded the Rev. John

Brainerd as missionary to the Indians at Cranberry, N.J. John Mathews was a

cousin to these children and traveled with Daniel on his missions. John Mathews was to become an Oneida missionary under Samuel Kirkland;

Charles, Daniel, Narragansett. Withdrawn by his father in 1767.

Also enrolled was a Tuscorora, an Oriske Indian and the son of the Seneca Chief, Tekananda. .

A nephew of the Rev. Samuel Niles, ,the Indian minister of the Narragansetts, James Niles and Samuel Niles, Jr., the minister’s son were sent to the boarding school.. James moved westward with the Christian Indians before the American Revolution. Charles Daniel, son of John Daniels, withdrawn by his father in 1767; two girls named Abigail and Martha; John and Tobias Shattock, sons of John Shattock/Shaddock, Narragansetts. John and Toby had already been educated by Edward Deake in the Narragansett school.


The Moor Charity School Records can be found at Dartmouth and at Wheaton, Illinois. Dartmouth University printed many of the letters of the Indian Missionaries in a book titled “Letters of Eleazer Wheelock’s Indians.”

Laura J. Murray wrote “To Do Good To My Indian Brethren The Writings of Joseph Johnson, 1751-1776”.

“American Indians and Christian Missions” University of Chicago Press

“ Samson Occom and the Christian Indians of New England” by W. DeLoss Love

“Poor Richard meets the Native Schooling” by Margaret Szasz

Oct 20, 2012 - Doxtator Stories    5 Comments

Bartholomew Calvin – Wilted Grass (Shawuskukhkung)

Bartholomew Calvin was my fourth great grandfather on my father’s side of the family.

There are quite a few very interesting articles published on the web which describe direct ancestors on my Indian side. They show that they were Christianized at an early time, educated and functioned in civic roles in their communities.

Shawriskhekung ( also shown as Shawuskukhkung) or “Wilted Grass” was a Delaware Indian. He attended the Indian missionary school founded by Eleazer Wheelock that became Princeton College, having been educated at the expense of the Scotch Missionary Society, which had given him the name of Bartholomew S. Calvin.

At the age of twenty three he entered the Continental Army and served under George Washington to fight for independence. He also ran a school that was so superior that white colonial families sent their children to it. He was instrumental in working with the Governor of Delaware in creating peaceful relations between the colonialists and the Delaware people.

At the time he petitioned the legislature of New Jersey to pay the Indians for the fishing rights they had given up, he was more than eighty years old. His speech praised the New Jersey people for their fairness in treatment of the Lenni Lenape.

The rapid decline of the Indian population after the coming of the white men was due principally to sale of their lands, to disease, and to liquor. By 1758 there were but a few hundred scattered over the entire Colony. In that year the Colony purchased 3,000 acres of land for a reservation at the present village of Indian Mills in Burlington County. Here were collected almost l00 Indians, mainly Unamis, who agreed to surrender their title to all unsold lands, and attempted to form a self-supporting community. Governor Bernard appropriately named the community Brotherton. The Colony erected private homes, a meeting house, a general store, and a sawmill. The Indians kept their rights to unrestricted hunting and fishing. Stephen Calvin, a native interpreter, was the local schoolmaster. This Utopia did not last long, and in 1762 the group petitioned the as- sembly to pay bills for provisions, clothing, and nails.

In 1801 the Indians living at New Stockbridge, New York, invited their kinsmen at Brotherton to join them. The Lenape petitioned the legislature again, and a law was passed in that year appointing three commissioners to dispose of the Brotherton tract at public sale. The land brought from $2 to $5 an acre, enough to pay the Indians’ fare to their new home, allow a donation to the New Stockbridge treasury, and leave a remainder that was invested in United States securities.

In 1822 the Stockbridge group moved to Green Bay, Wisconsin. Ten years later the New Jersey contingent appealed to Bartholomew Calvin, son of their old schoolmaster, for further monetary aid in exchange for the relinquishment of hunting and fishing rights not mentioned in the 1801 settlement. Calvin obtained a legislative grant of $2,000. In a stirring speech of acceptance he said:

“Not a drop of our blood have you spilled in battle; not an acre of our land have you taken but by our consent. These facts speak for themselves, and need no comment. They place the character of New Jersey in bold relief and bright example to those States within whose territorial limits our brethren still remain. Nothing save benisons can fall upon her from the lips of a Lenni Lenape.”

“The Story of An Old Farm; or Life in New Jersey in the 18th Century” by Andrew Mellick has an excellent article about Calvin’s speech to the New Jersey legislature. The “Calvin Family” genealogy is the source for much of the above paragraph.


Moses Doxtator 1813 – 1891

Moses Anderson Doxtator was the child of Peter Doxtator and Lucretia Calvin, the daughter of Bartholomew Calvin AKA Weequehela (Wilted Grass). Moses was born in Lenox, New York in 1813.

Peter was a grandson of Honyere Doxtator or Tewahowagarahe (He Who Wears Snow Shoes), a chief of the Oneidas and a Revolutionary War patriot, who received a commission as Captain.

Lucretia’s father, Bartholomew Calvin AKA Weequehela (Wilted Grass) was educated at Moor School, a Scottish mission school run by Eleazor Wheelock that later became Princeton. He had his own very highly regarded school which was attended by white students as well as Indian.

Moses and Elizabeth came to Wisconsin in 1832 in a covered wagon pulled by teams of oxen. Moses made several trips between New York and the Wisconsin settlements with the head chiefs. He was a scoupt, who ran ahead to find suitable places to camp on those trips.

Moses married Elizabeth Cornelius, born in 1834. Elizabeth was the granddaughter of Hendrick Smith, another prominent Indian leader in New York.

Moses was a farmer. They settled and farmed the lands on both sides of the road on the east side of the Quinney hill.  He is shown on the Stockbridge Agency until 1871. He went to Kansas where he had land, but after about one year was run out by white settlers.

At some point the couple separated and Elizabeth bought a house originally built in 1870 by Apsen Quinney. She later went back to live on the Oneida reservation with her children. After Moses’ death in 1891 she married a man named George Allen.

John Doxtator

by Elaine Radditz as told to Mary Matsumoto (our cousin and John’s daughter)

The ancestors of our family came from the tribe made famous in the book ‘Last of the Mohicans’, by James Fennimore Cooper.  They fought with the British in the French and Indian War and later allied themselves with the Americans against the British during the Revolutionary War. (See ‘Forgotten Allies’ by Glatthaar and Martin).

In 1820, crowded off their land in upper New York by European settlers, our great-great-grandparents made the long trek to Wisconsin. Two of the three tribes, the Brothertown and Stockbridge Indians, eventually settled along the eastern banks of Lake Winnebago in what is now Calumet County.

Among Elaine’s (our) ancestors were Moses and Elizabeth Doxtator, who had sixteen children.

Moses Doxtator B. 1813 Lenox, Madison County, NY; D. 1891 Oneida Reservation, Brown County, WI
Elizabeth Cornelius Doxtator, B 1826 Wisconsin, D 1918 Brown County, Wisconsin


Stories have been handed down that their son, Peter, played the fiddle so beautifully it brought tears to listeners’ eyes.

After Peter had been married long enough to have eight children, his wife (Elvira Larson) left him. taking only the three oldest with her. Elaine’s father, John, stayed behind, caring for the four younger ones remaining at home. He did much to bring in food and prepare it for his siblings, all this while he was just a schoolboy himself. He’d leave for the little one-room schoolhouse on foot, but instead of going inside, he’d weave back to the road that led to the lake. There, he’d climb in his boat and spend the afternoon fishing so he could bring dinner home to his family.

John grew up two miles south of Stockbridge on the acre of land his grandmother purchased. He was poor, but he knew how to live off the land.

In those days, neighbors threw house parties for entertainment. They’d clear the room of furniture and engage in square dances and jigs to the music of neighborhood musicians. John’s father, Peter, played his violin at these parties, and it was there that John met his wife Frieda, who had come down from the Stockbridge reservation in Red Springs near Shawano to care for her ailing sister in Quinney. The couple married in 1925.

John and Frieda lived on that one-acre plot with a barn, a couple of cows, rabbits, chickens and a horse. Everyone had a horse in those days. Blacksmiths operated shops every few miles. It was in the 1940s before the Doxtator family bough an automobile, a Studebaker.

In the winter of  1923, John and Frieda received at their home in Stockbridge an Onondaga chief from New York. They discussed Indian matters during the visit. The Doxtators drive the chief and a couple who accompanied him to Chilton to catch the train after the visit was concluded. John was driving the team when the sleigh ran into a bump on the snow-covered road. The chief and the others landed in a snowbank and the team came unhitched. No one was hurt. The horses were re-hitched by the light of a lantern and the travelers were soon gliding over the snow again toward Chilton.

John was a hunter and trapper in the beginning. he brought in pelts from high Cliff to the Killsnake Creek in Chilton and as far south as Brothertown walking wherever he went. He sold the furs to the Percy Fur Company in Oshkosh. Buyers would blow on the mink pelts to see if the fur was fine or thick. They paid more for the fine fur of smaller animals.

“One morning,” John told his daughter (Elaine), “I got up early and set out for Quinney Beach at daybreak with three skunk hides and a mink pelt. It was the dead set of winter, and I carried them in a gunny sack slung over my back. I walked across Lake Winnebago to the Percy Fur Company in Oshkosh where they paid me $37 in cash for the hides.”

An accomplished fisherman by this time, he knew the wardens and gave them nicknames, Swampy and Sludge. They always seemed to be lurking around the shore somewhere, watching. If they weren’t around and he happened to catch a sturgeon out of season, though, he’d look both ways and take the catch home.  The local undertaker would haul sturgeon in his hearse (very large fish).

In the 1930s and 1940s, set-line fishing was permitted for several weeks in the fall. The lines were about half a mile long stretched out, with hooks tied every few feet. He would tie ten in a bunch and set the lines in a washtub with the hooks hanging from the rim. John paddled his boat across the lake, releasing the lines, and baiting the hooks with crickets, worms and grubs as he went. He had wooden buoys attached to them every few yards. Later in the day, he’d pull the lines in and arrange the hooks on a rack made of wooden slats. He caught all kinds of fish that way.

In the winter, he built a hut on the ice and laid a straw mat inside the hut. He then cut a hole in the ice and fished for the sturgeon through the hole. He then pulled the large fish through the hole with a pole. This was an art, because if you didn’t spear the sturgeon just right they would drop to the bottom of the lake.

For a time, John worked at the old sorghum mill down by the lake. It operated down the crossroad (now called Artesian Road) off “the old road”  (Lakeshore Drive). Farmers grew sugarcane back then. They’d harvest it, cut it in bundles and shocks, and bring it to the sorghum mill for processing.

Later, Steve Welch hired John to work for his stone company in Quinney. Hired men picked stone in the fields, sometimes having to dynamite the big ones. They built stone fences. John had been cooking since he was a kid, so he made meals for the laborers. On their time off, the guys formed sports teams – the Stone Men vs Quinney, Brothertown or Stockbridge.

When Frieda had her children, Dr. JohnKnauf, a young man at the time, would come out to the Doxtator home to help her deliver. In 1940, Frieda delivered twin girls. (Elaine was one of them).

When Elaine was a child, her father partnered up with the next door neighbor in his junk business.

“It was the perfect business for my dad” said Elaine. “He loved being outside, and he loved to find things.”

The men hauled iron, tin, copper, and aluminum from area farmers, separated it, and trucked it to Sadoff’s in Fond du Lac. Even little Elaine learned to tell the difference between metals.


John collected more than scrap metal. Every spring, he’d gather ginseng, catnip, elderberry, consumption weed and wahoo. He not only knew what the plants looked like, he knew exactly where to get them, seeking them out in his special places well into his 80s.

In 1968 John sang an Indian song at a ceremony at Stockbridge Harbor commemorating the trials of the Indians upon their resettlement from the East Coast to Wisconsin.

John lived until he was 89.

John Doxtator made one of the baskets on the lower shelf of this cabinet in the Oneida Museum.
Jul 20, 2012 - Doxtator Stories    1 Comment

Weequehela – Indian King of Central New Jersey

The Native American legacy of New Jersey has been too often overlooked or neglected by present-day residents of our State, and by historians and other scholars in general. For ten thousand years, long before the Pyramids of Egypt or the Great Wall of China were constructed, cultures and communities flourished in this area. Bounded on the east by the Atlantic Ocean, and linked with vast distances via waterways that bear the names Delaware, Hudson, Susquehanna and Ohio, the mid Atlantic region of North America was home to the Lenape Indians, and their Algonquian relations and Iroquois competitors.

In the 1600s, what was to become New Jersey was settled by the Dutch, Swedes and later the English and Scots as part of the colonial era. Tracts of land, both large and small, were usually purchased by the European newcomers from the Native inhabitants. In fact, by law, all Native land had to be first purchased by the Proprietors, and then later resold to colonists. This did not always happen, and in many cases, Indian owners sold to colonists directly. This in turn created confusion as to legitimate title to the land, confusion that would only be permanently settled by the Treaty of Easton in 1758 which relinquished virtually all Indian land claims to the Province of New Jersey.

An important figure in the colonial history of New Jersey was a powerful sachem named Weequehela. His story is pieced together from historical sources including court records, land transfers, government records and newspaper accounts. Perhaps most touchingly, his legacy is still remembered and cherished by the Delaware Indian communities of today. One important element of his ongoing legacy was a letter written by his great granddaughter in the 1860s which has been published in various sources (see below). By the time of his death in 1727, he owned a substantial plantation which included two sawmills along the Manalapan River.

By the early 1700s Weequehela’s property and mill operations were being hemmed in by land grants and settlement, particularly by the Leonard family. This close proximity and desire for additional wood lands created a conflict that erupted into violence in June, 1727 between Weequehela and John Leonard.

Who was this man and why was he so important? Perhaps the best contemporary description comes from Samuel Smith who published the History of Nove Caesarea in 1765. Smith was an important citizen and leader of his day and was well acquainted with the reputation of Weequehela:

The fact was, he was an Indian of great note and account both among Christians and Indians, of the tribe that resided about South-river, where he lived with a taste much above the common rank of Indians, having an extensive farm, cattle, horses and negroes, and raised large crops of wheat, and was so far English in his furniture as to have a house well provided with feather beds, calico curtains, &c. He frequently dined with governors and great men, and behaved well; but his neighbour, captain John Leonard, having purchased a cedar swamp of other Indians, to which he laid claim, and Leonard refusing to take it on his right, he resented it highly, and threatened that he would shoot him; which he accordingly took an opportunity of doing in the spring 1728 [7], while Leonard was in the day time walking in his garden or near his own house, at South-river aforesaid.

Weequehela first appears in land records in 1675 with a sale located near Shrewsbury. Much of his land sales focused on the Millstone and Manalapan watersheds, near present-day Hightstown, Millstone and Manalapan, New Jersey. He was an associate of men such as John Reid, to whom he sold several tracts, to Doctor John Johnston of Scotschester in Monmouth County (Marlboro Township), father of Andrew and Lewis Johnston. Cited as a Native Sakamaker (sachem or leader), his place of residence is written as Quainheetquas, which may be a variation of a spelling of a bridge near his residence in what is now Spotswood. Ironically, a 1701 deed was confirmed by Weequehela in the presence of Samuel Leonard, uncle of Captain John Leonard, who was fatally assaulted by the Sachem in 1727.

By 1700, Weequehela was the acknowledged leader of the Native Americans living in central New Jersey. He was consulted by New Jersey authorities in 1709 to help enlist Indian warriors for an attack against Canada during Queen Anne’s War and he was involved in several legal actions in which he acted as mediator between Indian and colonist.

At the Court of General Quarter Sessions held at Monmouth Court House in Freehold, Weequehela appeared on February 28, 1720 in a matter that foreshadowed his own experience seven years later. As leader of the Indians residing in central New Jersey, he was called upon by Monmouth County officials to bring in an Indian man accused of firing a gun at a white neighbor. Weequehela brought Welehaley and some other unidentified Indian men to court to answer the complaint of Robert Hubbs for shooting at him. After some discussion, during which Welehaley also complained of the actions of Hubbs, the Indian gave up his gun to the court and the complaint was dismissed on both sides.

As to the family of Weequehela, there is uncertainty as to who his father was. One possibility is that his father was Matapeck (better known as Metapis). However, a contemporary document identifies his father as Ireesick. From a letter written in 1708 by William Leeds of Burlington County regarding a land dispute:

[Richard] Stout made some pretence to by the Indian Right but he did not of the Right owner for my father [William Leeds] was obliged to buy it of Ireeseek, waquehelas father, and Stout allowed him for so doing. (Quoted in Stillwell’s Historical Miscellany, Vol. III, p. 449)

Iresick Brook in Old Bridge Township, and a tributary to the South River, is likely named after him. He had sold tracts of land in Monmouth County, along the Raritan and South Rivers in Middlesex County, along the Millstone River and elsewhere.

In 1700, Samuel Leonard of Shrewsbury was granted lands including 1,970 acres on the east side of the South River, beginning at the point where the Manalapan and Matchaponix rivers join, then running west one-half mile to present-day DeVoe Avenue, south 6600 feet, east 7788 feet, and then north to Thomas Warne’s grant and the South River. Of this grant, known as Leonard’s Great Tract, forty-five acres were awarded for his brother, John (East Jersey Deeds, G. p. 211). It was this proximity of John Leonard to Weequehela that ultimately led to violence in 1727.

A letter written by Weequehela’s great-granddaughter (daughter of Bartholomew Calvin) in 1864 provides an insight into the remembrance of the Indian King, and his treatment at the hands of the colonists.

To the Rev. Mr. Marsh,

Dear Sir: Your kind and interesting letter was gladly received, after being over a month on its way here. I was joyfully surprised to hear from you and your family after so long a time, especially little Sara, (I must call her little, because it makes me think of gone-by days) and to learn that there is still in existence one of the Brainerd family.

My father said David [Brainerd] had 2 or 3 large churches amongst the Delawares, as they were scattered about in different parts of the country, they being very numerous at that time. Did my father ever tell you why they were so scattered? It was because they did not like their present King [sachem]. Their former King met his fate some years before. I will tell you something about it. He was a poor pagan, living in heathen darkness. It pains my heart to even think of it, although it is said that he was a very honest, upright man in all his dealings, very much loved by his subjects.

Well, there was a white man lived on his land by the name of Leonard, who kept rum to sell the Indians[Leonard operated a tavern at South River Bridge, present-day Old Bridge village in East Brunswick, NJ]. The King used to have spells of drinking, and, when he got sober, Leonard would tell him he had bought a large tract of land of him and this was repeated over and over. At length he got so enraged at him while walking in the garden, when Leonard told how many miles of land he had signed off to him while he was drinking, he told Leonard, “You have cheated me so much; I am a great mind to shoot you.” L. turned round and faced him, opened his shirt bosom, told me, “Now shoot.” He shot him immediately through the breast, as he always carried a loaded rifle. He then gave himself up to the whites; told them not to come with a large company of men to his house and scare his family. “Send only one man and I will saddle my horse and go with him quietly.” But no, they went with a great company. They did not only take him, but they took all his Negroes, his property of all kind, except one old Negro woman and she hid 12 silver spoons. This was all the property the King’s wife had left her, with 4 or 5 small children, one a few days old. The King had been a great friend to the Governor and to all the whites. The Governor used to go and dine with him and he with the Governor. The King’s name was We-queh-a-lah.

His subjects offered to go and take him out of jail by force, that he might go towards the west. But he told them, “No, I have killed a bad man and am willing to hang for it; and, moreover, I want you to live in peace with your pale-faced brethren. If I should run away the pale face would always be killing you. I shall save a great many lives if I am hung, but I don’t want them to hang me. I want them to shoot me like a man. I did not hang that man; I shot him, and if I let them hang me the Great Spirit will take me to the good hunting ground, but if I run away he won’t let me go there and it would not be right for a King to run away,” and many other such words he said. But they hung him before the time. The Governor sent a reprieve, but it was too late. He was dead.

After that they turned his wife out of her home, took all her land, everything she had. She had a great many horses and cattle, a great deal of silver ware; many such things were given to him by the English. She did not live long after her husband’s death. Her children all died soon after, except his only daughter, 3 years old [Sarah Store II, according to family genealogy]. Poor child, she suffered much while a child. Saw her aunt killed by a white man. I will only say she suffered everything but death. This poor child was my father’s mother. She was one of David Brainerd’s converts; one among the first. He was the first white man she could love. . . .

My great-grandfather told his people before he died they must go west, where there was no pale faces to sell them rum and cheat them out of their lands. Some of them went off before David came amongst them. But after the Brainerds finished their labors amongst them, they went off west to the Ohio or White River country in small bands or companies. Father’s oldest brother [Hezekiah Calvin, a former Wheelock student, and leader of the Brotherton Reservation] went with them. I am happy to say that many of them carried with them the good seed that was sown in their hearts to the far west.

The last company that was left in New Jersey my father brought to New Stockbridge in the State of New York, but they have all nearly died off; some went to Kansas and they are dead. There are none here in this place; only my family….

The Agent is about to make a Treaty with us. I do not know where we shall go next; perhaps to Nebraska, but it does not trouble me in the least. My greatest trouble is where I shall go when I leave this world. . . . Pray for me and my family that I may hold out to the end. Pray for my boys that they may give their hearts to God.

From your sincere friend,

Marian Peters.

Keshena, Shawano Co., June 20, 1864

When Leonard was shot, Weequehela was immediately arrested and a special trial held in Perth Amboy. On June 23rd he was tried and one week later, he was executed. There is no record of the trial, although other contemporary court documents do exist, and there is no record of Governor Burnet’s alleged reprieve. What may be deduced is that Weequehela’s trial was handled in an expedient, and likely extralegal manner with the consequence that the old king was now considered to be expendable. Authorities were so concerned about the proceedings that two companies of militia were called out “to Protect the Sheriff and Officers from any Insult of the Mob or Indians.” (The American Weekly Mercury, July 6, 1727)

From a news account dated August 21, 1727, there was a report from New Jersey that a number of Indians “are come to the Plantation of the late King Wequalia (who was executed for the murder of Capt. John Leonard) in order to Crown a New King in the Room of said Wequalia” (New England Weekly Journal, August 28, 1727)

After Weequehela’s death, Andrew Woolley was named king, and over the next three decades, he was the primary signatory on many deeds. For example, land at Cattail Creek and the Assanpink in Monmouth County was deeded by “King Andrew Woollee” in 1743. Woolley was Weequehela’s sister’s son, which may indicate the traditional Native American custom of leadership passing through the female line. In 1739, Woolley and others, deeded Weequehela’s land to Andrew and Lewis Johnston for what was to become large portions of Spotswood and Helmetta. By 1746 his widow and other relations were prominent members of the Bethel Indian Mission established by David and John Brainerd in present-day Monroe Township, and later held land at the Brotherton Reservation in Burlington County. A map from circa 1760, thirty-three years after Weequehela’s execution, shows Sarah Weequehela’s lot at Brotherton.

Sarah Stone’s signature

Sarah’s lot at the new Brotherton Reservation 1759

Weequehela’s Descendants

Weequehela had one daughter who lived well into old age and who eventually moved to upstate New York by 1802. Mary married Stephen Calvin, noted school teacher of Bethel and Brotherton, and in turn, had many children. The following is from the information found in the Foster Collection at the PA Historical Society, from notes written by Dr. James Alexander in 1832 who interviewed Bartholomew Calvin and from the 1801 petition to dissolve Brotherton, this is the data I’ve gleaned.

Weequehela m. Sarah. In 1766, two Indian women were murdered at Moorestown, NJ. Could these be some of the women Mrs. Peter’s referred to in her letter?

Children: 4 or 5 small children (Peter’s letter), only one daughter survived:

Mary m. Stephen Calvin; their children:

Hezekiah Calvin, b. ca. 1747 (he was prob. between 10 and 12 when he went to Wheelock’s school in 1757]. He was a teacher at Ft. Hunter, NY by 1765 and was in love with Mary Secuter, a Narraganset & fellow-Wheelock student. He was imprisoned for forging a pass for a black person. By the 1770s he is at Brotherton. According to Peter’s letter, he moved west. His name dissappears from Brotherton records after 1788.

Bartholomew Calvin. b. ca. 1761 at Crosswicks according to himself. He was 71 in 1832. I still haven’t found any military service info and he was part of the Brotherton ruling council as early as 1777. He is still doing business in NJ in 1805 over the Weekping/Coaxen tract.

Stephen Calvin. He appears on the 1801 petition to sell Brotherton, he made his mark. I am assuming this was a son of Stephen and Mary.

Mary Calvin, Jr. }

Rebecca Calvin. } one of these daughters, who ever was the youngest, was married to Daniel Simon, a Narraganset minister. Rebecca’s name appears last on the list; perhaps she was the daughter.

There is also a Nathan Calvin on an 1802 document.

For more info on some of Weequehela’s descendents, please see: