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Settler Colonization and Indian Slavery in 17th Century Sowams

The goal of the English was to colonize New England by acquiring full or partial political control over Native societies and territories, founding a colony, occupying it with settlers, and exploiting it economically.  Compared to other settlements on the East Coast of America, this was relatively easy to do in New England because of the […]

History of the Royal Pokanoket Burial Site in Warren, RI described

One of two Royal Pokanoket Burial Grounds in Southeastern New England was established in the 16th century in today’s Warren, RI, at what is now Burr’s Hill Park. The site has a long history of disturbance of the burials starting with the construction of the Providence, Warren and Bristol Railroad in 1854 and ending with […]

On-line tour of Leiden includes a correction of the Thanksgiving story

The Leiden400 organization offered a four-hour on-line tour of locations and museums linked to the Pilgrims on May 16, 2020 in lieu of the original planned live tour that had to be cancelled due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Jori Zijlmans, Curator of the Museum de Lakenhal, speaking about the first Thanksgiving in Plymouth said at  “. . […]

The Ring of the Green: Sowams' Second English Settlement

Though Roger Williams was the first Englishman to settle in 17th century Sowams, he was quickly followed by Rev. Samuel Newman and his followers from Weymouth who purchased land from the Massasoit Osamequin in 1643. After constructing a meeting house in what is now Rumford, RI, the settlers laid out over fifty farms, each fronting […]

The Massasoit and Edward Winslow: An Enduring Friendship

This presentation is designed to help you understand the history of cooperation that occurred in the 17th century led by the Massasoit Osamequin and Pilgrim Separatist Edward Winslow and how that cooperation ended with each of their sons by the 1670s. The earnest efforts on the part of Edward Winslow to establish mutual trust and […]

Plagues, Pokanokets and Pilgrims in the 17th century YouTube presentation

Before the arrival of Europeans in the Americans in the late 15th century, the Pokanoket people lived in a relatively disease-free environment.Starting in 1616, those same people began to suffer from a series of pandemics that wiped out up to 90% of their numbers. So, how did these infectious diseases first come to New England […]

Haile Farm Preserve in Warren, RI, gets ready to open trails for the Spring

On the former Bowen-Haile-Nunes Farmstead, a rare surviving representative of a 17th century Narragansett Bay saltwater livestock farm now given over largely to development, stands the oldest extant house in Warren. The Warren Land Conservation Trust acquired approximately sixty acres of the original farm land on the eastern shore of the Palmer River that now is […]

Roger Williams’ Early Life in London, England

Roger Williams, the founder of Rhode Island, grew up in Smithfiled, London, in the early 1600s before moving to America in 1631. During that time, he witnessed dozens of people being burned at the stake in West Smithfield for their religious beliefts. He knew Captain John Smith, who settled Jamestown in 1609, as he would […]

British Museum display fails to include the story of Sowams

The British Museum in London cares for around 90,000 contemporary, historical and archaeological objects that reflect the diversity of culture spanning more than 12,000 years across a third of the world’s landmass. Among its holding are the Rosetta Stone, the Elgin Marbles, and a head from Easter Island. The British Museum also holds thousands of objects from the Americas including […]