1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Mohican, Mahican and Mohegan

From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search
6722031911 Encyclopædia Britannica, Volume 18 — Mohican, Mahican and Mohegan

MOHICAN, MAHICAN, and MOHEGAN, the first two the alternative names of an important tribe and confederacy of North American Indians of Algonquian stock, and the last a dialectic form of the name applied to a branch tribe. The Mohicans inhabited the Hudson valley, and their domain extended into Massachusetts. The Mohicans were called by the French Loups (wolf Indians), a translation of "Mohican." At first their council-fire was at Schodac, on an island near Albany, and they were grouped in forty villages. In consequence of attacks by the Mohawks, they moved their council-fire to what is now Stockbridge, Massachusetts, in 1664; in 1730 many migrated to the Susquehanna valley, Pennsylvania, and became absorbed into the Delawares. In 1736 those left in Massachusetts were placed on a reservation at Stockbridge, and called by that name. A few of these Stockbridge Indians, who may truly be called "the last of the Mohicans," are now settled, with some of the Munsees, on a reservation at Green Bay, Wisconsin. The Mohegans, originally an offshoot of the Mohican, lived on Thames river, Connecticut, their country extending into Massachusetts and including Rhode Island. In 1637, on the destruction of the Pequots, an offshoot of the Mohegans, the Mohegans claimed their country too, and thus the territorial power of the two tribes was consolidated under one Mohegan chief. For some time the Mohegans remained the supreme Indian people of southern New England. Eventually they sold most of their lands and centred in a small reservation on Thames river. They have now practically become extinct.