From Academic Kids

The Pequot were a tribe or nation of Native Americans who, in the 17th century, inhabited much of what is now Connecticut, and spoke a variety of the Algonquian language. The tribe was virtually eliminated in the Pequot War of 1637. Modern remnants survive as the Mashantucket Pequots and the Eastern Pequot Tribal Nation (a.k.a. Paucatuck Pequots).

This article covers the Pequot as an tribe, or nation.

Total population

1620: 6,000. (est.)
1637: 3,000. (est.)
1910: 66.
2000: 1,000–2,000 (est.)

Significant populations: Eastern Pequot Tribal Nation, Lantern Hill, North Stonington Connecticut: <b>1130.
Mashantuckett or western Pequots, Ledyard, Connecticut: 350.
Language Historically, Pequot, a dialect of Mohegan-Pequot (an Algonquian language), now English
Related ethnic groups

Native American
 North American natives
  Eastern Woodlands natives

"Sibling" groups:




The Pequot and the Mohegan were one tribe that migrated toward central and eastern Connecticut sometime around 1500, probably from the upper Hudson River Valley. Sometime after that and before contact with Europeans, they had split into the two warring groups. The Pequot became the dominant tribe in central and eastern Connecticut, collecting tribute from other tribes. The group probably numbered about 6,000 in 1620, but smallpox and wars had reduced this to 3,000 by 1637.

The Pequot War

Main article: Pequot War

In 1637 difficulties between the English settlers of Connecticut and Massachusetts and the Pequot became open warfare. The Mohegan and the Narragansett sided with the English. Perhaps 1,500 Pequot were killed, in specific battles or hunted down. Most of the rest were captured and distributed as slaves or household servants. Some few escaped to be absorbed by the Mohawk or on Long Island. Of those enslaved, most were awarded to the allied tribes but some were sold to plantations in the West Indies. The Mohegan particularly treated the hostages and their descendants so badly that the English in Connecticut later removed them. Two reservations were founded by 1683 and remain in some form to this day.

Modern history

By the 1910 census the entire Pequot population reached a low of 66. It has since grown; since then, the population has rebounded somewhat, and there are two present-day settlements of Pequot in Connecticut.


The 1130 member Eastern Pequot Tribal Nation have a reservation called "Lantern Hill." They are recognized by Connecticut and the United States government. The 350 Mashantuckett or western Pequot gained federal recognition in 1983 and have a reservation in Ledyard.

Nearly all individuals who are identified as Pequots live in the two above-named communities.


To be written along the lines of Wikipedia:WikiProject Ethnic Groups Template


To be written along the lines of Wikipedia:WikiProject Ethnic Groups Template, should discuss governmental and other institutions of the two surviving reservations, plus anything known about historical institutions.


Applicability of the term "tribe" to the Pequots

This article uses the term "tribe" to describe various bands of Native Americans. The groups in New England were not very formally organized. What we now view as a tribe was a village or collection of villages adhering to a sachem or other leader. These alignments shifted as leaders arose and populations rose or fell.

Further reading

  • Howard Bradstreet; The Story of the War with the Pequots, Retold; 1933, Yale University Press, New Haven, Connecticut.
  • Michael Oberg; Uncas: First of the Mohegans; 2003, Cornell University Press, ISBN 0801438772.
  • Alden Vaughan; Pequots and Puritans: The Causes of the War of 1637; 1964, in the William and Mary Quarterly, Number 21.

The Pequots in Southern New England: The Fall and Rise of an American Indian Nation (The Civilization of the American Indian Series, Vol 198) by Laurence M. Hauptman, James D. Wherry (Editor) Paperback Publisher: University of Oklahoma Press (March 1, 1993) Language: English ISBN: 0806125152

Facing East from Indian Country: A Native History of Early America by Daniel K. Richter Hardcover: 320 pages Publisher: Harvard University Press (December 1, 2001) Language: English ISBN: 0674006380

Spirit of the New England Tribes: Indian History and Folklore, 1620-1984 by William Scranton Simmons Paperback: 343 pages Publisher: University Press of New England; 1st edition (March 15, 1986) Language: English ISBN: 0874513723

500 Nations : An Illustrated History of North American Indians by ALVIN M. JR JOSEPHY Hardcover: 480 pages Publisher: Gramercy (August 6, 2002) Language: English ISBN: 0517163942

External link


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