Monday, July 25, 2011

Bits & Pieces from my files:

Thoughts and ideas - once and a while decisions and/or conclusions come our way. The following from my files is just one of those subjects - as always open to further discussion. I do welcome any discussion and only ask that it be first referred to me. Today's Bit to Talk-A-Bout concerns the Woodland Indian .

Well before the arival of the Mayflower, the Woodland Indians had fallen upon hard times - their creative thrust had been blunted by centuries of bloody warfare and then, in 1616 - the great plague. Many tribes with scarcely enough living to bury their dead were vulnerable to their old enemies. The New England tribes were on their way to self-destruction.

In 1888 the following statement was made concerning the Pawtuckets. "The plague completed the ruin of this nation. The nature of this disease is doubtful - it began near Saco and swept down to Naraganset Bay but not beyond. Richard Vines, a physician, passed the winter of 1616 among the victims - he and his men even slept in the cabins of the sick, but not a white man was affected. The skin of the victims was of a deep yellow, both before and after death, still it seems the disease was not yellow fever and it was not the small pox".

The toll over the next 200 years was great, there was conflict among the tribes, and warfare against the settlers. In 1849 - a report presented to the legislature stated that there appears to be the remains of twelve tribes within the bounds of Massachusetts.They number only 847, including people of color connected with them. There were but six or eight of pure blood in Massachusetts.