Mystic Massacre in Pequot War
Whereupon Captain Mason seeing no Indians, entred
a Wigwam; where he was beset with many Indians,
waiting all opportunities to lay Hands on him,
but could not prevail. At length William Heydon
espying the Breach in the Wigwam, supposing some
English might be there, entred; but in his Entrance
fell over a dead Indian; but speedily recovering himself,
the Indians some fled, others crept under their
Beds: The Captain going out of the Wigwam saw
manyIndians in the Laneor Street; he making towards
them, they fled, were pursued to the End of the Lane,
where they were met by Edward Pattison, Thomas
Barber, with some others; where seven of them were
Slain, as they said. The Captain facing about, Marched
a slow Pace up the Lane he came down, perceiving
himself very much out of Breath; and coming to the
other End near the Place where he first entred, saw
two Soldiers standing close to the Paflizado with their
Swords pointed to the Ground: The Captain told them
that We should never kill them after that manner:
The Captain also said, We must Burn them; and im-
mediately stepping into the Wigwam where he had
been before, brought out a Firebrand, and putting it
into the Matts with which they were covered, set the
Wigwams on Fire. Lieutenant Thomas Bull and Nicholas
Omsted beholding, came up; and when it was
thoroughly kindled, the Indians ran as Men most
And indeed such a dreadful Terror did the Almighty
let fall upon their Spirits, that they would fly from us
and run into the very Flames, where many of them
perished. And when the Fort was thoroughly Fired,
Command was given, that all should fall off and surround
the Fort; which was readily attended by all;
only one Arthur Smith being so woundedthat he could
not move out of the Place, who was happily espied by
Lieutenant Bull, and by him rescued.
The Fire was kindled on the North East Side to
windward; which did swiftly over-run the Fort, to the
extream Amazementof the Enemy, and greatRejoycing
of our selves. Some of them climbing to the Top of
the Pallizado; others of them running into the very
Flames; many of them gathering to windward, lay
pelting at us with their Arrows; and we repayed them
with our small Shot: Others of the Stoutest issued
forth, as we did guess, to the Number of Forty, who
perished by the Sword.
By Major John Mason from his account of the Pequot War's Mystic Massacre, Connecticut Colony, 1637
Part of King Phillips War. A huge piece of American history not taught outside of New England. Probably not even there now.
Didn't this happen because the native americans didn't want to obey someone else's laws being forced onto them?
For a very good account of King Philips War, read Mayflower by Nathaniel Philbrick.
Probably the best account of the entire affair from the pilgrims going to Holland, then the New World, what happened in the few short years from the time they landed and created Plimouth to the the war with Masasoit's son, Squanto (King Philip), and the tribes aligned with him.
Amazingly researched and very well presented.
I think this was a very early precursor to hostilities in the region and I probably wouldn't include it in King Phillip's War per se. As for the root cause, a common thread I see is encroachment, a form of eminent domain, and ultimately natives commiting atrocities only to face permanent reprisal.
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