Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Stockbridge Mohican Church History Timeline: Part I

If you want to verify the accuracy of this post, the best source to check is Patrick Frazier's The Mohicans of Stockbridge.

May, 1734: Konkapot and Umpachenee are approached by two ministers who suggest the Mohicans accept a Christian mission.

July, 1734: A four-day council of the Housatonic Mohicans is held to decide whether or not to welcome a mission

October, 1734: The Housatonic Mohicans meet John Sergeant, their 1st missionary. Poohpoonuc is baptized, making him the first member of the church.

February, 1735: Roughly 200 Mohicans attend a national council hosted by Umpachenee. Approval is conferred upon the mission.

August, 1735: Forty-three Mohicans attend the ordination of John Sergeant. When asked if they want Sergeant to be their minister they rise in unison to show their approval.

1739: The town of Stockbridge, Massachusetts is incorporated.

1740-1741: Hannah Umpachenee and Mary Konkapot, two of the leaders of the new religion, die of tuberculosis.

1744: Kaunaumeek Mohicans (converts of David Brainerd) move to Stockbridge.

1745: The Prince of Wales' personal chaplain gives the Indian congregation a magnificent Bible.

1749: John Sergeant Dies at age 39. One historian (Davidson) claims he baptized 182 Indians.

1751-1757: Jonathan Edwards is the missionary. The French and Indian War rages. The Williams family tries to take Stockbridge land and government participation from Indians. However, the takeover is limited, thanks to Edwards' advocacy.

1758- 1770's: Bad Times
*Stephen West is the minister at Stockbridge, but he does not concern himself with the Indians spiritual or temporal needs. Instead, he appears to only be concerned about "sin" and excommunicates all Indians from his church.
*Historian Lion Miles refers to this period in time as "the great land grab." The unscrupulous Williams family, and a few others, cheat Indians out of their lands. More and more whites settle in Stockbridge.
*Out of frustration, problems related to drunkenness and alcoholism increase.

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