Petition of Mary Tom and Moses Fiske to the Governor Pownall and the Massachusetts General Court

To His Excellency Thomas Pownall, Esq., Captain General and Governor in Chief in and over His Majesty's Province of the Massachusetts Bay in New England, To the Honorable His Majesty's Council and House of Representatives in General Court Assembled

The petition of Mary Tom of Natick in the County of Middlesex [ Mary Tom ], Indian woman, humbly sheweth that the parents of your petitioner are both deceased1 who had, when living, lands in Natick and Grafton, your petitioner's mother was the longest liver and her name was last Mary Pogenit, and she was sick a considerable time before her death, which caused great expense to doctors and other ways.  There is an administrator appointed to administer upon her estate,2  which consisted chiefly in land lying in Grafton.  The said administrator has not wherewith out of said estate to pay the just debts except by the sale of land, whereas your petitioner is the sole heir to her father and mother's estate, your petitioner thinks it will be more for her interest to have land sold which came by her father,3 and your petitioner, being also in real want of some necessaries for upholding life, your petitioner humbly prays This Honorable Court to license her to sell so much of her land (which fell to her by father and mother) as to pay all the just debts brought against her mother's estate to the administrator above said, and the charges for settling the same, the produce to be put into the administrator's hands to pay the debts abovesaid and account to the Honorable Judge of Probate, etc.   And also something more for your petitioner's own necessities at the discretion and by the direction of the Guardians of the Indians in Natick.  

And Your Petitioner as in duty bound shall ever pray, etc.,

Mary Tom, her mark     


We, the subscribers, have examined into the facts set forth in the above petition and are of opinion they are reasonable. John Jones, Joseph Buckminster, John Clark, Guardians of Natick Indians, March 31, 1760                                                            



With submission to His Excellency and the Honorable Court, before mentioned, I would join with the other petitioner and humbly shew that I, the subscriber, took administration on the estate of Mary Pogenit, deceased, eleven months ago and have never petitioned for liberty to sell land till now, because I was willing that the heir, namely, Mary Tom, should have that done which is most for her interest provided the creditors were not hurt, there is more then one hundred pounds old tenor due from said estate as may appear by a certificate from the Honorable Judge of Probate and the creditors grow impatient by so long waiting.

Therefore, I, your other petitioner, humbly prays this Honorable Court to grant the petition as asked for or otherwise that I, as administrator, may have license to sell so much of the deceased's land as to pay the just debts with the charges.  Either of which if this Honorable Court in their great wisdom and goodness shall see meet to grant your petitioner.

As in duty bound shall ever pray, etc.

Natick, April 15, 1760

These may certify that by an inventory of the estate of Mary Pogenit, late of Natick in the County of Middlesex, Indian, deceased, intestate, and a list of her debts examined by the Judge of Probate for said County.  It appears that her debts (inclusive of an allowance made her of necessaries for upholding of life) exceed her personal estate.   The sum of twenty pounds sixteen shillings and eight pence.  And her real estate was apprised at fifty pounds.  Samuel Danforth, Judge Probate.  April 17, 1760



  • 1. Mary's parents were Moses Printer and Mary Pogenit. He died sometime in 1743 and his wife lived until 1757. Hassanamisco People, YIPP Research files.
  • 2. Moses Fiske
  • 3. Moses Printer was one of the original proprietors of Hassanamisco, having received 108 acres of land therein 1727. DeLucia, Memory Lands, 65.