Petition of Rhoda Charles to the Connecticut General Assembly Requesting Leave to Sell Land

To the Honorable General Assembly of the State of Connecticut to Be Holden at Hartford within and for Said State on the Second Thursday of May AD 18111

The petition of Rhoda Charles, one of the Niantic Tribe of Indians in Lyme in the County of New Londonhumbly sheweth that her father, Joseph Occuish, who was one of said Niantic Tribe of Indians, in his lifetime owned a piece of land containing about ten acres lying in the Town of New London, now being in the Town of Waterford, which piece of land he purchased of one Samuel Smith of said Town of New London and that at the death of her said father, said land became the property of Abraham Occuish, and your petitioner as said Joseph left no other heirs but said Abraham and your petitioner, and that sometime after said Joseph's death, said Abraham sold said land to said Samuel Smith of New London, and that he received part of the pay for the same, either of said Samuel Smith in his lifetime or of his widow Mary Smith,2 since the death of said Samuel and that your petitioner, after his death, received part of the pay of said widow, Mary Smith, and that there is a small part due from said Mary to complete the purchase of the premises which she, said Rhoda, needs for the support of herself and children, and as said Abraham is since dead and left no heir, your petitioner is the only owner to the premises, and said Mary is willing to pay the rest of the purchase money for the same as soon as she can have an authentic deed of said piece of land. Wherefore, your petitioner prays Your Honours to take her case into your consideration and to direct that some proper person may in her behalf and for her use be authorized to sell said piece of land by deed of conveyance to said Mary Smith and to receive for the use and benefit of your petitioner the sum now actually due from said Mary Smith and pay over the same to your petitioner, which balance amounts to about ten dollars.

And your petitioner as in duty bound shall ever pray,

Rhoda Charles, her mark
Dated at Lyme, December 18, 18103


Witnesses, Josiah Manwaring, Amasa Bush, Lyme, December 18, 1811


I advise to the foregoing petition, Andrew Griswold, overseer to the Niantic Indian

Legislative Action:

General Assembly, October 1811.  In the House of Representatives, the prayer of the foregoing petition is granted with liberty of a bill, etc.  Attest, Charles Denison, Clerk.  Concurred in the Upper House.  Attest, Thomas Day, Secretary / 26 / Petition of Rhoda Charles / 27 / October Session 1811. / Granted House of Representatives / Concurred Upper House / Copy


102 a, 102 b, 194

  • 1. The second Thursday of May 1811 was the 9th.
  • 2. Deleted text: and that
  • 3. The date is mistakenly given as 1810. It should be 1811.