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David Avery, letter, to David McClure, 1768 August 14

ms-number: 768464.3

[note (type: abstract): Avery writes a collegial letter, over a few days and in segments, about the people and conditions at his mission. He notes that he will travel to Canajoharie to recruit an interpreter, and then writes from there as well.][note (type: handwriting): Informal handwriting is largely clear and legible; it is occasionally difficult to decipher punctuation.][note (type: paper): Medium-sized single sheet is in fair condition, with moderate staining, creasing and wear. Large portions of the wax seal remain.][note (type: ink): Dark-brown.][note (type: noteworthy): The authorship of this letter has been determined by 1) the trailer on one verso, and 2) the fact that the handwriting does appear to be Avery's. The letter's date is taken from the trailer on one verso; it is written over the course of at least three days. The undated segments beginning "Monday Morning" and "wrote to you either..." appear to have been written previous to the section dated August 17, and likely from Kanawalohale[place0114.ocp]. It is uncertain to whom Avery refers when he mentions "the Queen," however, she is possibly Molly Brant, William Johnson[pers0292.ocp]'s consort."The Peregrina" or “pilgrim" is likely a reference to Avery himself. It is uncertain whether “little Jonne Williams’s Brother" refers to a little Jonne, William’s brother, or the brother of little Jonne Williams, and so these names have been left untagged. The identity of “Johnson" is uncertain, and so he has been left untagged; however, he is possibly Joseph Johnson[pers0288.ocp] or Jacob Johnson[pers0287.ocp]. The identity of Mr. M– is uncertain and so he has been left untagged.][note (type: signature): It is uncertain whether the signature "G.H.S." is a nickname between two former classmates, an abbreviation for a saying, or something else entirely.][note (type: layout): The letter is written in segments, in several different orientations on the page.]

leg-go-ro-hoh-quon-ye-[Suckeweſat | Suckewesat]SuckeweſatSuckewesat
yo-yonnereh..T[above] hhe Indians bear [y.o | your]y.o your avery[pers0064.ocp]
tender regard— ho [illegible] [guess (h-dawnd): !]! yonnereh, quógh!
[y.a | They]y.a They are very kind to me— [conſtantly | constantly]conſtantlyconstantly bringing
one thing [& | and]&and another—Father Isaac[pers0276.ocp] is a
Father indeed— little Jonne W[gap: tear] [guess (h-dawnd): [illi][illiam's Bro
ther often brings [preſents | presents]preſentspresents— it [w.d | would]w.d would have
made you [laught | laugh]laughtlaugh to see [ye | the]ye the little shaver
[y.s | thus]y.s thus come [w.h | with]w.h with a small [baſket | basket]baſketbasket of Cucumbers
indian like slung on his head— another
little boy of [ye | the]ye the school about 4 years old
made a [prest | present]prestpresent: [laſt | last]laſtlast saturday of three very
small [shuiners | shiners]shuinersshiners! The Queen is going to
see her Son at [N | New]NNew England[place0158.ocp] = [illegible] [guess (h-dawnd): Tuebhuns]Tuebhuns[& | and]&and hope
to hear from at her return—adieu! adieu!
 Yours ut supra
  [illegible] [guess (h-dawnd): G.]G. H. S.
[Canajohare | Canajoharie]CanajohareCanajoharie [place0026.ocp] [Aug.t | August]Aug.t August 17[1768-08-17]….
Came here today very much [fatieauged | fatigued]fatieaugedfatigued.—
the [Diſaffection | disaffection]Diſaffectiondisaffection [& | and]&and [Inſenſibity | insensibility]Inſenſibityinsensibility of [ye | the]ye the dutch
[illegible] are enough to provoke [ye | the]ye the righteous [diſpleaſure | displeasure]diſpleaſuredispleasure
of a good man— Give more Love to [Friſbie | Frisbie]FriſbieFrisbie [pers0209.ocp]
for his Letter [y.n | than]y.n than can be [expreſt | expressed]expreſtexpressed by my old [blunderg. | blundering]blunderg.blundering [Quil | quill]Quilquill
[Suppoſed | Supposed]SuppoſedSupposed Ripley[pers0444.ocp] non datur or should have wrote him
by [Mr | Mr.]Mr Mr. Kinne[pers0308.ocp]..— [wiſh | Wish]wiſhWish you all a happy Commencement—
remember an [abſent | absent]abſentabsent friend [above] toto C… Brethren…[yo | you]yo you will all write
me either by [ye | the]ye the [Miſsionary | missionary]Miſsionarymissionary or [ye | the]ye the! fiat!….
[Canajohare | Canajoharie]CanajohareCanajoharie [place0026.ocp] [Augt | August]Augt August 18[1768-08-18].
The Indians of [y.s | this]y.s this [Caſtle | Castle]CaſtleCastle [place0026.ocp]
are laden with Iniquity—
drunken [& | and]&and [drinkg | drinking]drinkgdrinking. [con‐
‐ſtantly | con
[laſt | Last]laſtLast Evening
two [drinken | drunken]drinkendrunken Sober
Gentlemen of [ye | the]ye the [D–l | Devil]D–lDevil
came to make me a
[Viſit | visit]Viſitvisit! however, they
could not [git | get]gitget right of me.
 pray for me— —
my hand trembles so
[thro | through]throthrough [weakneſs | weakness]weakneſsweakness am not
able to mend [theſe | these]theſethese [Tera
‐bles | terri
— Thanks to
[Meſsrs | Messrs.]Meſsrs Messrs. Allis[pers0053.ocp], Dudley[pers0172.ocp]
[& | and]&and Johnson for [y.r | your]y.r your Letters—.
[ye | the]ye the doctor's [cauſed | caused]cauſedcaused me a
good hearty Laugh! Dud‐
wrote on [ye | the]ye the Lady of
[Friendſhip | Friendship]FriendſhipFriendship!— —
hope to procure some
more [curioſities | curiosities]curioſitiescuriosities for
[Mr | Mr.]Mr Mr. M. write about [y. [illegible] [guess (h-dawnd): m]m | them]y. [illegible] [guess (h-dawnd): m]m them
if [y.o | you]y.o you see [ye | the]ye the [ | doctor's] doctor's [yo | you]yo you will see [w.t | what]w.t what
a [hurleburley | hurly-burly]hurleburleyhurly-burly [ye | the]ye the Peregrina is in.
wrote you either [laſt | last]laſtlast night or [y.s | this]y.s this [Morg. | morning]Morg.morning be‐
twixt one [& | and]&and four — not being able to sleep—
as Sleep is wont to depart from my Eyes—
am going to [Canajohare | Canajoharie]CanajohareCanajoharie [place0026.ocp] to [git | get]gitget [Joannes | Johannes]JoannesJohannes [pers0282.ocp]
if [poſsible | possible]poſsiblepossible for Interpreter—


[M.r | Mr.]M.r Mr. D. Avery—[pers0064.ocp]
[Aug.t | August]Aug.t August 14. 1768[1768-08-14]

  [Mr | Mr.]Mr Mr. David [McClure | McClure]McClureMcClure [pers0368.ocp]
  Lebanon [place0122.ocp]
  Connecticut [place0048.ocp]
By [ye | the]ye the Queen}

among thy

[bottom] NonsenseNonsense
[bottom] Nonvo Portu–Nonvo Portu–
[bottom] Coppecticut–sm Coppecticut–sm
[bottom] NovangliaNovanglia

Kanawalohale was a village located in the present-day town of Vernon in central New York state. In the 18th century, it was an Oneida village located about 60 miles west of the Mohawk village Canajoharie. Because the village’s name was similar to the Mohawk village of Canajoharie, many sources conflate the two. Founded in the mid-18th century, Kanawalohale was made up of a cluster of about 40 homes along the Oneida Creek, south of Oneida Lake. The name means head on a post in reference to an enemy soldier's skull displayed in the village. In 1765, David Fowler established an Indian school in Kanawalohale, where Wheelock’s son, Ralph, worked. Between the years of 1765 and 1767, Kanawalohale hosted many of Wheelock's missionaries including Samuel Kirkland, Joseph Johnson, David Avery, and Aaron Kinne. The Indians of Kanawalohale used their relationship with missionaries such as Kirkland to gain prestige over the formerly central Oneida village, Old Oneida. Kirkland often wrote in his journal about the dialogues he had with the Indians at Kanawalohale, who refused to receive his teachings silently. The Christian Indian population grew throughout the 1760s with at least 200 Indians attending church in the village. In 1780, Joseph Brant, a Mohawk allied with the British, led a war party against the revolting colonists, with whom the Oneidas had allied, that destroyed the Oneida village of Kanawalohale. This area is known today as Oneida Castle.

New England

The historical Mohawk village of Canajoharie was located about 50 miles northwest of Albany, New York, in the central part of the state. Today, both a town and village in the same vicinity of the Mohawk village of Canajoharie have taken the Mohawk name, but the location of the present-day village is slightly east of the historical village. Because the village’s name was similar to the Oneida village of Kanawalohale, where David Fowler established a school in 1765, many sources conflate the two villages. Canajoharie, which in English means a washed kettle, was also known by the names Indian Castle and Upper Castle, which refers to the late 17th-century Mohawk fortifications that were built around the town following a series of French attacks during King William’s War. The term Upper Castle served to differentiate Canajoharie from Lower Mohawk Castle located in the Mohawk village of Tionondoroge near Fort Hunter. Canajoharie contained the Indian Castle church, which still stands today and was built in 1769 by the British Superintendent of Indian Affairs, Sir William Johnson, with help from the Mohawk siblings Molly and Joseph Brant, who donated land to the cause. Throughout the span of the 18th century, war, disease, and emigration severely reduced the Mohawk population in Canajoharie, and an influx of both white and non-Mohawk Native Americans resulted in a diverse and ethnically mixed culture. Wheelock's missionary work in this village in the 1760s was headed by Theophilus Chamberlain, while Abraham major, Abraham minor, and Peter (Mohawk) maintained missionary schools near Canajoharie.


Lebanon is a town located in the state of Connecticut southwest of the town of Hartford. The land that became Lebanon was inhabited at least 10,000 years ago based on the archeological record. By the 1600s, the land was permanently inhabited by the Mohegan Indians, who used the area primarily for hunting. Lebanon was officially formed in 1700 when English settlers consolidated a number of land tracts, including several land grants by the Connecticut General Assembly and lands purchased from the Mohegans. However, these purchases were controversial. In 1659, the Mohegans entrusted their reserve land to Major John Mason, and in the following year, Mason transferred this land to the Connecticut colonial government with the understanding that there would be enough land left for the Mohegans to farm. The Mohegans claimed that they never authorized a transfer to the colonial government and only Mason’s heirs were entrusted with their land. In 1662, Connecticut, which included the Mohegan land that had been entrusted to the Masons, was incorporated by a royal charter. Based on this charter, the colony argued that the land was now the property of the government. In 1687, the colony began granting the Mohegan land to townships, and in 1704 the Masons petitioned the Crown on behalf of the Mohegans, claiming that such transfers of land to townships were illegal. Between the years of 1705 and 1773 legal disputes and controversies persisted, finally ending in a verdict by the Crown against the Mohegans. In 1755, Wheelock received property and housing in Lebanon that he would use as his house and school. While Lebanon was originally incorporated as a part of New London County in 1700, in 1724 it became a part of New Windham, before once again becoming a part of New London County in 1826. Lebanon was central to the American Revolution with half of its adult population fighting for the colonists and hundreds of meetings convened in the town for the revolutionary cause.


Connecticut is a state in southern New England that borders Massachusetts to the north and the Long Island Sound to the south. Its name is derived from the Algonquian "Quonehtacut," meaning "long river," referring to the Connecticut, which runs from the border with Canada into the Long Island Sound. The area was originally inhabited by Algonquian-speaking Pequots, Mohegans, and Quinnipiacs. European settlers took advantage of tribal divisions to establish dominance in the region. Dutch explorer Adrian Block sailed up the Connecticut River in 1614, establishing an active Dutch trading post at what is now Hartford. English claims to Connecticut began in 1630, but settlement truly began when Thomas Hooker, a Congregationalist minister now known as "The Father of Connecticut," left Boston to found Hartford in 1636. Hartford became the center of the Colony of Connecticut, which did not receive its charter until 1662 when Governor John Winthrop, Jr. secured it from Charles II. In 1665, the Colony of New Haven, established in 1638 by the Puritan minister John Davenport, joined the Colony of Connecticut under this charter. Early settler relations with local Indians were tense, and encouraged the New England colonies of Massachusetts Bay, Plymouth, Connecticut, and New Haven to unify as the "United Colonies" or "New England Confederation" and fight together, with Indian allies, in the Pequot War and again in King Philip's (Metacom's) War. These wars helped establish a specifically Connecticut and specifically American identity; the latter drove the colony to join the rebellion against Britain in 1776. Occom, born into a Mohegan household in Connecticut, was closely associated with the Colony and retained strong ties to the region throughout his life. He converted to Christianity in 1743 when the Great Awakening spread through Connecticut, and inspired Wheelock's Indian Charity School, which was founded in Lebanon, CT in 1754. He also became involved in the Mason Land Case, a long-standing dispute over the ownership of reserve Mohegan lands in Connecticut. Wheelock also had strong ties to Connecticut, moving his Indian Charity School only when the colony would not grant it a charter.

Avery, David

David Avery was one of Wheelock's charity scholars and had a long career as a Congregationalist minister. He studied at Moor's and Yale, where he was David McClure's classmate, and received his Masters from Dartmouth in 1773. Avery went on several missions to Indian tribes before his health forced him to retire. His first mission, before his final year at Yale, was to Kanawalohale as a schoolteacher in the summer of 1768. While there, he attended the 1768 Treaty of Fort Stanwix as Wheelock's representative. After graduating, he served on Long Island around Smithtown. He was ordained August 29, 1771, at Dartmouth. Wheelock then sent him to the Oneidas for eleven months (September 1771 to August 1772), primarily to find out why the Oneidas had withdrawn their children from Wheelock's school. However, Avery's health was failing, and at some point between August 1772 and March 1773, he withdrew from Indian missionary service. In response, Wheelock charged him part of his tuition. Avery lived an exciting life after he left Wheelock's service. The Sabbath after the battle of Lexington (April 19 1775), he bade his Gageborough congregation farewell, mustered twenty men, and led them to Boston where he preached to the entire army. He enlisted as a chaplain, although he also fought in battle and served as a medic. He left the army in February 1780, and spent the rest of his life in a variety of pulpits, with a stint under the Massachusetts Domestic Missionary Society.

Johnson, William

Sir William Johnson was a powerful British colonial official who amassed wealth and influence by integrating into the Mohawk tribe. For a brief window of time (1761-1768), he provided support for Wheelock’s missionary efforts among the Six Nations. He also helped the Brothertown Nation of Indians procure land from the Oneidas. Johnson was born in Ireland in 1715. His family had been part of the Catholic elite, but after William of Orange’s 1690 victory at the Battle of the Boyne, they at least nominally converted to the Episcopalian Church. In 1738, Johnson emigrated to America to manage his uncle Peter Warren’s estate in Mohawk territory. Over the next decade, Johnson became wealthy in his own right through trade and land sales, acquiring a vast estate crowned by his manor house, Johnson Hall, which became the central location for British and Indian treaty making. In 1745, Johnson began collecting official British titles and positions. He played an important military role in the French and Indian War and was named Superintendent of Indian Affairs in 1756 and first baronet of New York in 1757. Much of Johnson’s success was due to his influence among the Mohawks, which he obtained by learning their language and customs and integrating himself into their society. He participated in Mohawk rituals and entered into a common-law marriage with a powerful Mohawk woman, Molly Brant (also called Mary Brant). Because Haudenosaunee (Iroquois) society is matrilineal, this marriage was an essential element of his participation in Indian affairs. Wheelock desperately wanted to wield missionary influence among the Six Nations, and sought to obtain Johnson as an ally in his endeavors. At first, the two found grounds for cooperation. Wheelock sent Occom as a missionary to the Oneidas in 1761 and again in 1762, and sent a substantially larger group of missionaries and schoolmasters in 1765, 1766, and 1767. Johnson, meanwhile, encouraged Haudenosaunee children, including his brother-in-law Joseph Brant, to attend Moor’s. Johnson’s support proved indispensible to missionaries in the field; he helped with supplies, language skills, and relations with the Mohawks and Oneidas. Wheelock also valued Johnson for his influence in Britain, and drew on him for recommendations and public statements of support numerous times. From 1763 on, however, Johnson found himself decidedly uncomfortable with Wheelock’s missionary efforts, and by 1769, their relationship had dissolved completely. In 1766, Johnson was invited to join the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel in Foreign Parts (SPG), the largest and most influential Anglican missionary society in the 18th-century British-Atlantic world. He began working to place Anglican missionaries, rather than Congregationalist and Presbyterian ones, among the Six Nations, which alarmed Wheelock. Johnson was generally supportive of Native American tribes’ efforts to maintain their land and sovereignty. As the historian Linford Fisher has noted, “virtually every major Native group in southeastern New England successfully petitioned Johnson to act on their behalf during the late 1760s and early 1770s.” Among these groups was the Brothertown Nation, a Christian composite tribe formed by Southern New England Algonquian Moor’s alumni. Johnson helped them negotiate with the Oneidas, which proved essential to their successful land purchase and relocation to central New York.

Johnson, Joseph

Joseph Johnson was a Mohegan who studied at Moor’s Indian Charity School and became one of the most important organizers of the Brothertown Movement (a composite tribe composed of Christian members of seven Southern New England Algonquian settlements). He was a prolific writer and his papers are relatively well-preserved. Johnson’s writing is especially noteworthy for his skillful use of Biblical allusion and his awareness of the contradiction that he, as an educated Native American, presented to white colonists. Johnson arrived at Moor’s in 1758, when he was seven years old, and studied there until 1766, when he became David Fowler’s usher at Kanawalohale. He continued teaching in Oneida territory until the end of 1768, when Samuel Kirkland sent him home in disgrace for drunkeness and bad behavior. After a stint teaching at Providence, Rhode Island, and working on a whaling ship, Johnson returned to Mohegan in 1771 and became a zealous Christian. He opened a school at Farmington, CT, in 1772, for which he seems to have received some minimal support from the New England Company. From his base at Farmington, he began organizing Southern New England Algonquians for the Brothertown project. The goal was to purchase land from the Oneidas, the most Christianized of the Six Nations, and form a Christian Indian town incorporating Algonquian and Anglo-American elements. Johnson spent the rest of his short life garnering necessary support and legal clearance for the Brothertown project. Johnson died sometime between June 10, 1776 and May 1777, at 25 or 26 years old, six or seven years before Brothertown was definitively established in 1783. He was married to Tabitha Occom, one of Samson Occom’s daughters. She lived at Mohegan with their children even after Brothertown’s founding, and none of their children settled at Brothertown permanently. Like most of Wheelock’s successful Native American students, Johnson found that he could not satisfy his teacher's contradictory standards for Native Americans. Although Johnson's 1768 dismissal created a hiatus in their relationship, Johnson reopened contact with Wheelock after his re-conversion to a degree that other former students, such as Samson Occom, David Fowler, and Hezekiah Calvin, never did.

Johnson, Jacob W.

After graduating from Yale in 1740, Jacob Johnson studied theology, became a New Light preacher, and undertook some missionary work among the Mohawks. He was a very radical New Light: he believed in visions and dream interpretation, called himself a seer and, later in life, wore a girdle of hair in imitation of John the Baptist. From 1749 until 1772, he served as the minister at Groton, CT, and remained active in Native American missionary efforts. In the fall of 1768, Jacob Johnson went on a brief domestic fundraising tour with Joseph Johnson (perhaps intended to echo Occom and Whitaker’s tour of Britain, 1765-1767). Jacob Johnson is best remembered for his conduct at the Fort Stanwix Treaty of 1768, an enormously important treaty at which the Haudenosaunee (Iroquois) sold a large amount of land, most of it belonging to other tribes, to the British, represented by Sir William Johnson. The treaty also resolved a contested boundary between Connecticut and Pennsylvania in Pennsylvania’s favor. Jacob Johnson was not Wheelock’s first choice of delegate. However, after several others declined the post, he was chosen to accompany David Avery, then on a mission at nearby Canajoharie. At the gathering, Jacob Johnson engaged in at least four points of serious contention. First, he strongly urged the Haudenosaunee not to sell their land, in direct contradiction of Sir William Johnson and the British Crown’s wishes. Second, he then urged them to sell their land — but only to Wheelock for the use of the Indian Charity School. Third, he tried to interrupt efforts to settle the PA/CT boundary, because he was involved with the interested CT party (called the Susquehanna Company). Fourth, he refused to drink to the king’s health, and gave a bizarre toast calling into question the justice of the monarchy. In the volatile climate leading up to the Revolution, none of his actions went over well. In the aftermath of the Treaty, Wheelock tried to distance himself from Jacob Johnson’s actions, but Wheelock’s relationship with Sir William Johnson still fell apart. (F.C. Johnson, Jacob Johnson’s great-grandson and biographer, has argued that it is unfair to hold Jacob Johnson wholly responsible for these events, as Wheelock and Sir William Johnson diverged on many important political and religious issues). After the Fort Stanwix Treaty, Jacob Johnson accompanied Kirkland on a mission to the Mohawks and Oneidas that lasted until April 1769. He was relatively proficient in the Mohawk (and, thus, Oneida) language, and made a valuable missionary. Like many other missionaries employed by Wheelock, Native-American and Anglo-American alike, Jacob Johnson disagreed with Wheelock about the financial compensation for his mission, and their relationship seems to have disintegrated at this point. In 1772, Johnson was dismissed from his post at Groton. He then resumed his involvement with Connecticut efforts to settle Pennsylvania territory, and became the first minister of Wilkes-Barre, PA, a Connecticut settlement in the contested region (now Wyoming County, PA). He remained there for the rest of his life, excepting a brief period during the Revolution when he sought refuge in CT (1778-1781).

McClure, David

David McClure was an Anglo-American charity scholar at Moor’s Indian Charity School. He went on to become a minister, and remained exceptionally loyal to Eleazar Wheelock throughout his life. McClure is important as a primary source on Moor’s Indian Charity School: his diary (more accurately, an autobiography that he composed between 1805 and 1816) includes eyewitness accounts of the school, Samson Occom’s home life, and Separatist worship among the Charlestown Narragansett. McClure also became Wheelock’s first biographer (Memoirs of the Reverend Eleazar Wheelock, 1811). McClure was a typical charity scholar, in that he attended Moor’s primarily to obtain an education that his family could not have afforded otherwise. After a year at Moor’s, McClure enrolled in Yale, where he attended sporadically between 1765 and September 1769, when he received his degree. After graduating, McClure kept school at Moor’s (then in New Hampshire) for several years, until he undertook his only career mission in 1772. McClure was exceptionally ill-suited to the missionary business. He was a city boy from Boston, and was so unfit for farm labor at Moor’s that Wheelock had him copy out correspondence instead. Aside from a brief 1766 foray into teaching at Kanawalohale under Samuel Kirkland’s tutelage, McClure’s only mission was an aborted sixteen month effort (1772-1773) to proselytize the Delaware of the Muskingum River, during which he spent far more time preaching to Anglo-American congregations. McClure had a long career as a minister, teacher, and writer. He remained close to Wheelock throughout his life: he married into Wheelock’s family in 1780, served as a trustee of Dartmouth from 1778 until 1800, consistently informed Wheelock of Dartmouth’s PR problems, and took Wheelock’s side in his dispute with former charity scholar Samuel Kirkland.

Ripley, Sylvanus

Sylvanus Ripley was a charity scholar at Moor’s Indian Charity School who became one of Dartmouth College’s first professors and Eleazar Wheelock’s son-in-law. After a brief stint at Moor’s proper, Ripley entered Yale in 1768. He undertook several short missions to the Canadian tribes in the early 1770s to seek out a new source of Native American students for Wheelock. His longest mission, from May to September of 1772, garnered 10 students from Kahnawake, the Catholic Canadian settlement. Ripley was an important figure in Dartmouth’s early history: in addition to serving as preceptor of Moor’s from 1775 until 1779, he was a tutor at Dartmouth from 1772 until 1782, a trustee of Dartmouth from 1775 until 1787, and the College’s professor of divinity from 1782 until 1787 (sources differ as to whether Ripley was ever formally ordained). He was also very involved in the political conflicts that characterized the town’s early history. Ripley died in 1787, at age 37, after being thrown from a sleigh.

Kinne, Aaron

Aaron Kinne was a Congregationalist minister and scholar who, like Titus Smith and Theophilus Chamberlain, worked as a missionary for Wheelock after graduating from Yale. After his 1765 graduation, he taught and studied at Moor's for a year before making two trips as a missionary in 1766: one to Maine to report on the local Indian tribes, and one to the Oneidas, the latter being cut short by poor health. He returned in the summer of 1768 to substitute for Samuel Kirkland. Kinne was ordained in 1770 and became the minister of the Congregationalist church at Groton, Connecticut, where he served until he was dismissed in 1798. He also became a prolific scholar, and during the Revolution, served as chaplain to American troops, including those massacred at the Battle of Fort Griswold. After dismissal from Groton, Kinne lived in a variety of locations in New England and was sporadically employed as a missionary. He died in Ohio while visiting one of daughters.


Johannes was a Mohawk who studied at Moor’s Indian Charity School from 1761 until 1765. He was approached as an usher (junior schoolteacher) on March 12, 1765, in the Moor’s graduation orchestrated by Wheelock in preparation for a mass mission to the Mohawk and Oneida. Johannes kept school at Old Oneida during the summer of 1765, but did not continue his post. A variety of Anglo-American Moor’s-affiliated missionaries, including Aaron Kinne and David Avery, sought his services as an interpreter, but there is no indication that Johannes accepted any of their invitations. It is more likely that, like other Haudenosaunees (Iroquois) who studied at Moor’s, Johannes rapidly reintegrated into Haudenosaunee society. Shortly after returning to Haudenosaunee territory, Johannes was too preoccupied with managing his family’s horses to serve as an interpreter (manuscript 765673), and a few years later, he was unable to respond to Aaron Kinne’s request because he was out hunting (manuscript 768363.1). Thus, in Johannes’ disappearance from Anglo-American records, we can read a polite rejection of the assimilation project that was Moor’s Indian Charity School’s raison d’etre.

Frisbie, Levi

Levi Frisbie was a very intelligent and unreligious charity scholar. He came to Wheelock with substantial schooling already, and after a few months at Moor's, Wheelock sent him on to Yale. There, Frisbie excelled academically. However, he never wanted to be a missionary. He arrived at Moor's sometime during April of 1767, and by May 5, he was already writing Wheelock asking to be released from missionary obligations. While at Yale, this trend continued: Levi went so far as to confess to Wheelock that he was not even a church member. Although he was not passionate about Scripture, he was quite the classicist. Under the name Philo Musae, he would write Wheelock long chains of heroic couplets styled on epic about the Indian mission. In 1769, Levi went on his first mission (a short stint to the Oneidas). Shortly thereafter, Wheelock pulled Levi out of Yale to help make up Dartmouth's first class. Levi graduated in 1771, and was ordained with David McClure in May 1772. He and McClure set out on a mission on June 19, 1772, but Levi fell ill immediately and stayed at Fort Pitt. It is unclear whether he rejoined McClure on the mission. The two men returned to Hanover on October 2, 1773. Levi stayed involved with Wheelock and the Indian mission for a few years, but by 1776, he had assumed the pulpit at Ipswich, where he remained for the rest of his life. Levi's poetry appears at the end of Wheelock's 1771 Narrative, as well as in McClure and Parish's biography of Wheelock.

Document Summary

People identified in this document:

id Text in document Role in header Authorized Name
pers0064.ocp avery writer Avery, David
pers0276.ocp Father Isaac mentioned Isaac
pers0209.ocp Friſbie Frisbie mentioned Frisbie, Levi
pers0444.ocp Ripley mentioned Ripley, Sylvanus
pers0308.ocp M r Mr. Kinne mentioned Kinne, Aaron
pers0053.ocp Allis mentioned Allis
pers0172.ocp Dudley mentioned Dudley
pers0172.ocp Dud‐ ley mentioned Dudley
pers0282.ocp Joannes Johannes mentioned Johannes
pers0064.ocp M. r Mr. D. Avery— writer Avery, David
pers0368.ocp David M c Clure McClure recipient McClure, David

Places identified in this document:

id Text in document Authorized Name
place0158.ocp N New England New England
place0026.ocp Canajohare Canajoharie Canajoharie
place0026.ocp y. s this Caſtle Castle Canajoharie
place0026.ocp Canajohare Canajoharie Canajoharie
place0122.ocp Lebanon Lebanon
place0048.ocp Connecticut Connecticut

This document does not contain any tagged organizations.

Dates identified in this document:

Standard Form Text
1768-08-17 Aug.t August 17
1768-08-18 Augt August 18
1768-08-14 Aug.t August 14. 1768

Regularized text:

Type Original Regularized
modernization Hanienſt Hanienst
modernization Suckeweſat Suckewesat
modernization y.a They
modernization conſtantly constantly
modernization preſents presents
variation laught laugh
modernization ye the
modernization y.s thus
modernization baſket basket
variation prest present
modernization laſt last
variation shuiners shiners
variation Canajohare Canajoharie
variation fatieauged fatigued
modernization Diſaffection disaffection
variation Inſenſibity insensibility
modernization diſpleaſure displeasure
modernization Friſbie Frisbie
modernization y.n than
variation expreſt expressed
variation Quil quill
modernization Suppoſed Supposed
modernization Mr Mr.
modernization wiſh Wish
modernization abſent absent
modernization Miſsionary missionary
modernization y.s this
modernization Caſtle Castle
variation drinkg drinking
modernization con‐
modernization laſt Last
variation drinken drunken
modernization Viſit visit
variation git get
variation thro through
modernization weakneſs weakness
modernization theſe these
variation Tera
modernization Meſsrs Messrs.
modernization cauſed caused
modernization Friendſhip Friendship
modernization curioſities curiosities
modernization Mr Mr.
modernization y. [illegible] [guess (h-dawnd): m]m them
variation hurleburley hurly-burly
modernization y.s this
variation Joannes Johannes
modernization poſsible possible
modernization M.r Mr.
variation McClure McClure

Expanded abbreviations:

Abbreviation Expansion
y.o your
& and
w.d would
w.h with
N New
Aug.t August
blunderg. blundering
yo you
Augt August
D–l Devil
y.r your
y.o you doctor's
w.t what
Morg. morning

This document's header does not contain any mixed case attribute values.

Summary of errors found in this document:

Number of dates with invalid 'when' attributes: 0
Number of nested "hi" tags: (consider merging the @rend attributes, or using other tags) 0
Number of tags with invalid 'rend' attributes: 0 (out of 55)
Number of people/places/organizations with unknown keys: 0 (out of 18)
Number of "add" tags with unknown 'place' attributes: 0 (out of 6)
Mixed case attribute values in header (potential error): 0 (out of 127)
HomeDavid Avery, letter, to David McClure, 1768 August 14
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