We are the Chappaquiddick Wampanoag Tribe. Our ancestors inhabited Chappaquiddick Island, Cape Pogue and Muskeget Island for thousands of years, well before the United States was formed and Massachusetts became a state. Between 1692 and 1870, our tribe filed numerous petitions to the Massachusetts Bay Colony and the State of Massachusetts to address various issues and concerns regarding encroachment and land disputes. They also sent a petition to King George of Great Britain in 1772. In 1788, before the Federal Indian Non-intercourse Act (of 1790) was passed to provide protection for Indian people, Chappaquiddick Island was divided between the settlers and the Chappaquiddick Wampanoag. Our people received only one-fifth of the island, not the best soil, and were designated two reservations, the Cleared Lands Reservation on North Neck and the Woodlands Reservation. In 1828, the reservation land lots were assigned to tribal families at their request. With the passing of the Massachusetts Enfranchisement Act of 1869, the reservation lands were allotted to Chappaquiddick Wampanoag individuals and they were absorbed by the town of Edgartown.
Today, Chappaquiddick people live on Martha’s Vineyard Island, in Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut, and throughout the United States. It is Important to remember that we are still here. We are current representations of our ancestors’ values and beliefs. We are working to keep alive the legacy of our Chappaquiddick ancestors while making our own contributions to our tribe and the larger global community. We deeply believe in the necessity to share our history with our youth, so they have the knowledge, tools and commitment to ensure we thrive in the future. We believe in the cycle of life. That coming together is the beginning, keeping together is progress and working together is success. To act upon these beliefs, every year since 1995, the Chappaquiddick Tribe has convened for its annual gathering at the Chappaquiddick Indian Burial Ground to honor our ancestors and rich history.