Fowler, David

Variant last names: Fouler; Fowoler
Birth: 1735 in Montauk
Death: March 31, 1807 in Brothertown
Affiliation:

Montauk; Moor's Indian Charity School; Brothertown

Education:

Moor's Indian Charity School (1759-1765)

Nationality:

Montauk

Occupation:

School master

Residence:

Montauk (from 1735 to 1759-04-12)

Lebanon, CT (from 1759-04-12)

Oneida, NY (from 1765-05-25 to 1765-11)

Kanawalohale, NY (from 1765-11 to 1767)

Montauk, NY (from 1767)

Brothertown, NY (from 1775 to 1807-03-31)

Events:

In 1767, he walked 400 miles from Oneida to New England and back (the return trip took him less than ten days) to get supplies for Kirkland, who was struggling to survive.

Marital status:

Married Hannah Garrett, a Pequot and a Moor's alumna. They had one son, David Fowler Jr. Prior to marrying Hannah, David pursued at least two other female Moor's students. In letters to Wheelock, David referred to his future wife as his rib.

Biography:

David Fowler was Jacob Fowler's older brother, Samson Occom's brother-in-law, and an important leader of the Brothertown Tribe. He came to Moor's in 1759, at age 24, and studied there until 1765. While at school, he accompanied Occom on a mission to the Six Nations in 1761. He was licensed as a school master in the 1765 mass graduation, and immediately went to the Six Nations to keep school, first at Oneida and then at Kanawalohale. Fowler saw himself as very close to Wheelock, but their relationship fragmented over the course of Fowler's mission, primarily because Wheelock wrote back to Kirkland, with whom Fowler clashed, but not to Fowler, and because Wheelock refused to reimburse Fowler for some expenses on his mission (767667.4 provides the details most clearly). Fowler went on to teach school at Montauk, and played a major role in negotiations with the Oneidas for the lands that became Brothertown. He was among the first wave of immigrants to that town, and held several important posts there until his death in 1807.

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Sources:

Calloway, Colin, The Indian History of an American Institution. Dartmouth College Press 2010. Love, Deloss. Samson Occom and the Christian Indians of New England. Pilgrim Press 1899. McCallum, James. The Letters of Eleazar Wheelock’s Indians. Dartmouth College Press 1932. Murray, Laura. “‘Pray Sir, Consider a Little’”: Rituals of Subordination and Strategies of Resistance in the Letters of Hezekiah Calvin and David Fowler to Eleazar Wheelock, 1764-1768.” Studies in American Indian Literatures Vol. 4 No. 2/3 (Summer/Fall 1992). pp. 48-74. Accessed via JSTOR.