Smith, Titus

honorific(s): Reverend; Father
Birth: June 4, 1734 in South Hadley, MA
Death: September 15, 1807 in Halifax, Nova Scotia

Yale College; Moor's Indian Charity School


Yale College (1764), Moor's Indian Charity School (1764-1765)


Congregationalist, Sandemanian





  • Granby, MA (from 1768 to 1770)
  • Danbury, CT (from 1770 to 1773)
  • Long Island ( to 1783)
  • Halifax, Nova Scotia (from 1783 to 1807-09-15)

March 12, 1765: Examined as a missionary, along with Chamberlain. Both were ordained the following April.


June 19, 1765: Departed on the mission to the Six Nations, accompanied by Chamberlain, Elisha Gunn (interpreter), and most of Moor's recent graduates.


Onaquaga Scandal: In the second half of 1765, the London Commissioners in Boston (New England Company) sabotaged Titus Smith's mission to Onaquaga by sending a replacement missionary, Mr. Moseley, and reclaiming Smith's interpreter, Elisha Gunn. After Mr. Forbes, an ally of the London Board, failed to persuade Smith to take a Boston commission instead of one from Wheelock, the London Board sent Mr. Moseley to Onaquaga with Gideon Hawley, the missionary who had initially converted Natives in the area. The London Board specifically instructed them to take over Smith's mission without letting the Indians know what they were doing. In public speeches before the Haudenosaunee (Iroquois), they claimed they were there to assist Smith, but in private, Hawley told Smith that Moseley would be taking over the missionary effort. Because Gunn was under contract to the London Board and was "on loan" to Smith, Moseley reclaimed him. Without an interpreter, Smith had no choice but to return home. He seems to have faced an examination in late 1766 about his part in the affair, but acquitted himself in front of a body of ministers. For Smith and Wheelock's accounts of the affair, see manuscripts 766558 and 766563.

Marital status

Married to Damaris Nish; they had five sons and nine daughters.


Titus Smith was a Yale graduate whom Wheelock trained and ordained as a missionary and sent to the Six Nations with the 1765 mission. Together with Theophilus Chamberlain, a Yale student with whom he was examined and ordained, Smith led the band of newly-examined schoolteachers and ushers into the Six Nations to set up day schools. After Ebenezer Moseley replaced him, Smith retired from the missionary life and became an itinerant preacher in Connecticut until 1768, when he converted to Sandemanianism and was re-ordained. Because of his religion (Sandemanians opposed violence), as well as his Tory politics, Smith found himself in danger when the Revolution broke out. His family fled to Long Island, and from there to Halifax, Nova Scotia, where Smith lived out his remaining years.


Chase, Frederick. A history of Dartmouth College and the Town of Hanover, New Hampshire. 1891. Dictionary of Canadian Biography Online. “Smith, Titus.” Accessed 12/19/2012. “Sixth Generation.” Accessed 12/19/2012. 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.