From Academic Kids

The Wampanoag are a Native American people. In 1600 they lived in what is now south-eastern Massachusetts and Rhode Island, including Martha's Vineyard and Nantucket, and had a population of about 12,000.

Wampanoag leaders included Squanto, Metacomet (King Philip), and Massasoit. The tradition of Thanksgiving was adopted from this tribe and its interaction with the Pilgrims.

At one time they spoke an Algonguian language, Massachusett, although the language is now extinct. Due to colonial efforts, however, the language was written down and the language of the first New World Bible in an Amerindian language. Words from the their Algonquian language include squaw, now only derogative; wampum, the old shell currency; skunk; mugwump and enriched the geographical names of many places in Massachusetts, such as Aquinnah, Manomet, Hyannis, etc. The Wampanoag subsisted, as did other tribes of the Eastern Woodlands, on the "three sisters," corns, beans, and squash, along with the fruits of hunting, fishing and gathering. Unlike tribes of the Iroquois, the Wampanoag lived in wetus instead of longhouses.

Prior to the advent of the Pilgrims in 1620, the population had been drastically reduced by epidemics spreading from the French colonies. Due to the influence of Massasoit, the Wampanoag maintained strained but peaceful relations with the Pilgrims until the violence of King Philip's War. King Philip declared war on the pilgrims for several reasons, his people were being displaced by the growing pilgrim population, some English Puritans were forcing the Wampanoag to convert to their religion, and the King was unhappy with the negative cultural influence on his society. At the end of that strife, most of the Wampanoag and their Narraganset allies had been eliminated. Survivors fled to other tribes in New England. Some of the tribe on the islands had not been involved in the dispute and provided shelter for their kinsmen. Wampanoag in the hands of the Colonial forces were either relocated or sold into slavery.

Today, descendants,many of them also descended from the now-extinct Nauset tribe of the tip of Cape Cod, have a population of about 3,000 and live throughout Cape Cod and southeastern Massachusetts, with an important community in Mashpee and Aquinnah (Gay Head) on Martha's Vineyard, which is also a federally recognized tribe with a reservation. The most famous descendants of the Wampanoag Indians are Presidents George Herbert Walker Bush and his son President George Walker Bush.


External links

Further reading

  • The Bush Family ISBN 059533269 Bush Family book gives details of Bush ancestors including Wampanoag ancestors of Bush41 & Bush43.

de:Wampanoag pl:Wampanoagowie


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