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Samson Occom, student work, date unknown

ms-number: 000103

abstract: The Lord’s Prayer translated into Greek, French and Latin.

handwriting: Handwriting is Occom's, but is somewhat different from that of the hand in his letters and journals. His name is written in a very formal and bold script.

paper: Single sheet is folded into quarters and is in fair condition, with moderate-to-heavy creasing, staining and wear.

noteworthy: There are Mohegan words on one verso. The complete name and identity of S.r Huntington (on one verso) is unknown.

layout: Very small sheet of sheet of paper is divided into four quadrants. On one recto, there is Greek in the top left, French in the top right, Latin the in bottom left, and Occom's name in the lower right.

Full-page image.
Gr 9 Pater e̔mo͂n o eν toi͂s oura
nois agiaſthétω tò ὂnomá σou·
10 elthétω ἡ baſileia σou genethe
tω to ϑélemá σou ὡs eν ouranω
kaì ἐpì ten γes·
11 tòn arton emῶn ton epiouſion
dos e̔mῖn σemeron·
12 kai aphes e̔mi͂n tà opheilém
ata e̔mῶn ὡs kai e̔meis aphi
εmen tois ophiletais emῶn·
13 kai me εiſenegkes e̔mas
εis peiraſmòn allaruſai e̔m
a͂s eupò tou ponerou͂ ὃti σou
εſtin e̔ baſileia kai e̔ duna
mis kai e̔ doxa εis tous aiῶnas
L Pater noſter qui es in
Caelis ·1· Sanctificatur nomen
tuum·2 veniate regnum tuum·
3 fiat voluntas tua quemad
modum in Caelo, ſic etiam
in terra·4·panem noſtrum
quotidianum da nobis hodie
5 et remitte nobis debita
noſtra ſicut & nos remittimus
debitoribus noſtris·6·et ne
nos inducas in tantationem
ſed Libera nos ā malo quia
tuum eſt regnum & poten
tia & gloria in ſecula amen
Notre pere qui es aux
Cieux, ton nom ſoit Sancti
fie ton regne vienne ta
volonte ſoit faite en la
terre. Comme au ciel:
donne nous aujourd hui
notre pain quotidien &
nous pardonne nos offen
ſes Comme nous pardon
nons à ceux qui nous ont
offenſes & ne nous induis
point en tentation mais
deliv[illegible] re nous du mal ainſi
ſo ti il
Samſon Occom
Ejus manus
The Indian
Full-page image.
Samson Occom The Indian
of mohegan Ejus manus
Nockquotecotomo aune poqui
Rec.d in y.e College Hall £2=7=2
Rec.d in Sr Huntingtons
Room 1=3=0.
Dec.r 2. 1744 Rec.d of Leu.t Simon Hunt
of Acton ______ £0-16-0.

Mohegan is a village in southeastern Connecticut at the site of the present-day town of Montville, and is the location of the Mohegan Indian Reservation. The village gets its name from the Mohegan Tribe, or wolf people, who split from the Pequots in the early 17th century under the leadership of the sachem Uncas. In the 1720s, the Mohegans requested the colony of Connecticut provide them with an English educator. An English minister and schoolteacher named John Mason (no relation to Captain John Mason) moved to Mohegan in order to provide English-styled education to the Mohegans, convinced his sponsors, the New England Company, to build a schoolhouse at Mohegan, which eventually served as a boarding school for other Native American children from the surrounding area. During the 17th century, the Mohegan Tribe became embroiled in a complicated controversy over control of Mohegan land — known as the Mason Land Case or, more specifically, Mohegan Indians v. Connecticut — that included the village of Mohegan. The Tribe claimed that it never authorized a transfer of their lands, held in trust by the Mason family, to the colonial government. In 1662, the colony of Connecticut was incorporated by a royal charter, which included the disputed tribal land. The land controversy was revived in 1704 when descendants of John Mason, the original trustee, petitioned the Crown on behalf of the Mohegans, but the suit was finally decided against the Tribe in 1773. Born in Mohegan, Occom became involved in the Mason Land Case and vehemently argued for the rights of the Mohegan Indians to maintain their land, opposing Eleazar Wheelock and other ministers in the area. Although Occom left Mohegan for a 12-year mission with the Montauk Indians of Long Island, he returned at the end of 1763 with his large family to build a house in Mohegan, establishing it as his base of operations. Even after the creation of the Brothertown settlement in Oneida country, for which he served as minister, Occom continued to commute back and forth from Mohegan; he didn't sell his house in Mohegan and move his family to Brothertown until 1789. Many members of his family remained in Mohegan, including his sister Lucy Tantaquidgeon, who lived there until her death at 99 in 1830.


Acton is a town in Middlesex County, and located in eastern Massachusetts, twenty-four miles northwest of Boston. Native Americans lived in the area as early as 7000 years ago, and by the 17th century, the area was settled by the Pawtucket tribe, who used it for agriculture. An epidemic brought to the area by Europeans killed 90-percent of the Native Americans in Massachusetts Bay in the first quarter of the 17th century, and was followed by a smallpox outbreak in 1633, killing even more of the Native American population. In 1655, Concord appealed to the Massachusetts government to receive the land that would become Acton. The government agreed and the land, which they used mostly for sheep grazing, was called New Grant. By the end of the 17th century, the people of Concord began referring to the land as Concord Village. After several petitions, settlers in Concord Village were granted permission to become a separate town in 1735. After this point, the town was called Acton. There is no official record of how the town got this name; however, it is likely that the name comes from Acton of Middlesex County in England. In the mid-17th century, colonists began converting Native Americans in the area to Christianity, and the Praying Town of Nashobah was located on the town line between Acton and Littleton.

Occom, Samson

Samson Occom was a Mohegan leader and ordained Presbyterian minister. Occom began his public career in 1742, when he was chosen as a tribal counselor to Ben Uncas II. The following year, he sought out Eleazar Wheelock, a young Anglo-American minister in Lebanon, CT, in hopes of obtaining some education and becoming a teacher at Mohegan. Wheelock agreed to take on Occom as a student, and though Occom had anticipated staying for a few weeks or months, he remained with Wheelock for four years. Occom’s academic success inspired Wheelock to open Moor’s Indian Charity School in 1754, a project which gave him the financial and political capital to establish Dartmouth College in 1769. After his time with Wheelock, Occom embarked on a 12-year mission to the Montauk of Long Island (1749-1761). He married a Montauk woman, Mary Fowler, and served as both teacher and missionary to the Montauk and nearby Shinnecock, although he was grievously underpaid for his services. Occom conducted two brief missions to the Oneida in 1761 and 1762 before embarking on one of the defining journeys of his career: a fundraising tour of Great Britain that lasted from 1765 to 1768. During this journey, undertaken on behalf of Moor’s Indian Charity School, Occom raised £12,000 (an enormous and unanticpated amount that translates roughly to more than two-million dollars), and won wide acclaim for his preaching and comportment. Upon his return to Mohegan in 1768, Occom discovered that Wheelock had failed to adequately care for his family while he was gone. Additionally, despite the vast sums of money that he had raised, Occom found himself unemployed. Wheelock tried to find Occom a missionary position, but Occom was in poor health and disinclined to leave his family again after seeing the treatment with which they had met while he was in Britain. Occom and Wheelock’s relationship continued to sour as it became apparent to Occom that the money he had labored to raise would be going towards infrastructure at Dartmouth College, Wheelock’s new project, rather than the education of Native Americans. After the dissolution of his relationship with Wheelock, Occom became increasingly focused on the needs of the Mohegan community and increasingly vocal in criticizing Anglo-Americans’ un-Christian treatment of Native Americans. In September of 1772, he delivered his famous “Sermon on the Execution of Moses Paul,” which took Anglo-American spiritual hypocrisy as one of its major themes, and which went into four printings before the end of the year. In 1773, Occom became further disillusioned when the Mason Land Case was decided in favor of the Colony of Connecticut. The details of the Mason Case are complicated, but to summarize: the Colony of Connecticut had gained control of Mohegan land early in the 18th century under very suspect circumstances, and successfully fended off the Mohegan’s 70-year-long legal challenge. The conclusion of the case came as a blow to the Mohegans, and further convinced Occom of Anglo-American corruption. Along with David Fowler (Montauk Tribe), Occom's brother-in-law, and Joseph Johnson (Mohegan), Occom's son-in-law, Occom helped found Brothertown, an Indian tribe formed from the Christian Mohegans, Pequots, Narragansetts, Montauks, Tunxis, and Niantics. They eventually settled in Oneida country in upstate New York. Occom moved there with his family in 1789, spending the remaining years of his life serving as a minster to the Brothertown, Stockbridge, and Mohegan Indians. Harried by corrupt land agents, the Brothertown and Stockbridge groups relocated to the eastern shore of Lake Winnebago, though Occom died in 1792 before he could remove himself and his family there. Occom's writings and legacy have made him one of the best known and most eminent Native Americans of the 18th century and beyond.

Hunt, Simon
HomeSamson Occom, student work, date unknown
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