Philip Speegle
Pequot Indians
Section #7204
Area inhabited/ruled [if members of your group emigrated, immigrated, or established settlement (colonies) outside of their home country you should include an explanation of that travel or settlement in this section; include places traveled and reasons for leaving home country]

The Pequot Indians became a tribe in 1500, and settled in New York along the upper area of the Hudson River and Lake Champlain where the Mohegan first settled. They later decided that they would re-locate themselves because the English did not like the idea of the Pequot staying in New York. The Pequot had to settle in the Connecticut area along the Nehantic River where the Mohegan tribe would settle with them later on. The Mohegan tribe later became garrisoned in the Pequot city in the early 17th century. Around 1550, the Pequot had 2000 people in their tribe and the population would keep rising until 1633.
Everyday LifeO.o.pngThis is where the Pequot people lived.


Everyday life for the Pequot Indians was very interesting. The Pequot Indians became a very dominant tribe by taking over other tribes. Their aggressive behavior made them have more citizens than a usual tribe would have because the tribe captured citizens from other tribes. Their population was over 6000 in 1620.The Pequot spoke Algonquin or Y-dialect as their native language.“The word “Pequot" is from the Algonquin word "pekawatawog” or “pequttoog" meaning "destroyers." (http://www.dickshovel.com/peq.html) The Pequot people enjoyed hunting fish and seafood because of their coastal location. Clothing and housing were also similar to other tribes.For this reason, it is difficult to make a difference between the site of a Pequot village and that of another tribe today. The main difference is that Pequot villages were almost always heavily fortified.
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The Pequot tribe was also agriculturally advanced. “They planted beans, squash, corn, and tobacco.” (http://www.dickshovel.com/peq.html) However, a major smallpox epidemic in the winter of 1633-1634 and the separation of the Mohegan tribe in 1637 caused the population to decline to only about 3000 people. Less than 1500 of the Pequot survived the Pequot War against the English in that same year. The Pequot lost the war, and most of the soldiers and men fighting in the war were tortured or executed. The women and children were sold into slavery and became “servants” to the Mohegan and the Uncas. Some of the Pequot slaves became slaves in the West Indies. The Mohegan treated the slaves so badly that the English was forced to take some of the slaves for themselves. The slaves made the Mohegan the best tribe in the Connecticut region. The Mohegan tribe also kept some of the troops for themselves, making their army larger in numbers.

Social and Political Organization

The Pequot’s social and political organization has a military leader called a grand sachem and a tribal council. “Highly organized, the strong central authority exercised by their tribal council and grand sachem gave the Pequot a considerable military advantage over their tribal neighbors.”(www.dickshovel.com/peq.html) In this way, the Pequot were more like the Narragansett of Rhode Island and the Mohegan of New York's Hudson Valley. The grand sachem was the leader of the Pequot tribe. Grand sachems were also leaders of the military, but some didn't do a very good job fighting. In 1637, the leader of the war was John Endicott. He tried to keep up with his soldiers, but he couldn’t get victory over the English and was killed in the war.
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Religion

The Pequot religion was very organized and based on nature spirits. They believed that if you angered the gods, you would be severely punished or killed. The Wigwam, or Green Corn Festival is all at once a celebration of thanks, a symbol of tribal survival, and the chance to feel connected to other tribal members. It is held at the end of summer with the corn harvest. They used this as a tribute to the gods. They believed in a Creator or Great Spirit named Konchi Manto. Moshup is another of their characters of mythology. Moshup is a giant that carries much of the culture and religion of the Pequot. They believed in a spirit named Chahnameed, (also called Big Eater) who is characterized as being a liar, a cheat and greedy, all of which are considered unacceptable and inappropriate among the Pequot.
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Arts/Technology/Developed Culture

The Pequot created some great works of art in the early 1600s. They were acknowledged for their beadwork and basketry. Like other eastern American Indians, Pequots also created wampum out of white and purple shell beads. Wampum beads were traded as a kind of money, but they were significantly more important culturally as an art material. The designs and pictures on wampum belts often told a history of a person's family. The Pequot people made primitive weapon designs such as the bow and arrow, the spear, and the shaft with a sharp hook. They also made great pottery designs on their pots, which usually were wave designs, mirrored designs, or a picture of a person or animal.
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The Pequot were too aggressive in their actions, and in the Pequot War, it cost them very deeply. The decline of the Pequot kept going until it reached a minimum ofWPT.png 66 Pequot in 1910. However, with help from the government in 1992, the Pequot created a world-famous casino called the Foxwoods casino, and the Pequot population started rising again. Even though the Pequot had to endure slavery and war, they overcame their struggles and thrive today as a tribe.