Memorial Detailing Conveyance of Mohegan Land to Major John Mason

To the Honorable the Governor, Council, and Representatives met in General Assembly at Hartford, May 3, 1715

A memorial setting forth the conveyances of rights and lands from Uncas, sachem of Mohegan, to Major John Mason, Esquire

May it please this Honorable Assembly,

There having been already made an offer for a resignation of the rights in lands purchased by Major Mason, Esq., conveyed to diverse persons, subscribing and allowing the said offer what therefore is here by offered in vindication of those rights is not to make out any interest or benefit for themselves, and it being only a relation of true matters of fact evidenced by the records of this government can it be justly supposed to be hurtful to any person.  But that it may be seen and judged that that said offer is of real value and may be of great use for a right and just settling and quieting the titles to lands in the unquiet eastern parts of this colony.

It may therefore be remembered that Uncas, sachem of Mohegan on August the 15th in the year 1659 did by deed render his land in conjunction with Anguished, his brother,1 convey and pass over unto Major John Mason, Esquire to his heirs and assigns all their lands that had belonged to their predecessors or did now belong to themselves, which deed is witnessed by William Thompson, Thomas Leffingwell, and Benjamin Brewster, and at a session of the General Assembly, March 14, 1660 that Major Mason did surrender to this colony the jurisdiction power over the lands that Uncas and Wawagquohaet had made over to him, and farther the Assembly did leave it in the hands of Major Mason to lay out those lands by him purchased in farms and plantations for the English and leave a sufficiency for the Indians, as may more fully appear from the said deed and the public records.  Farther, it may be remembered that on May 20, 1661 that Uncas, Owaneco,[8] and Attawanhood did by deed under their respective hands ratify and confirm the former deed to Major Mason and his heirs by and with the consent of all his people, as by the said deed may more fully appear, the deed is witnessed by Thomas Leffingwell and Benjamin Brewster.  Farther, the General Assembly of this colony did appoint Major Mason to purchase lands of the Indians, as appears on the public record, and farther, it may be remembered that the Indians, not being quieted with what they had reserved for their lands, Major John Mason took another deed signed by Uncas, Owaneco, and Attawanhood, bearing date December 14, 1669 in which they do repeat and acknowledge and ratify the former conveyances to Major Mason and his heirs, and therein do seem to make a reserve to themselves of half the benefits that might accrue from the sale of those lands, as by said deed may appear, it being entered in the public records of this government.  The deed is witnessed by Thomas and John Tracy, and lastly it may be remembered that in the year 1681, this government entered into a farther agreement with Uncas in diverse articles, which were ratified by both parties in which this government fully acknowledge Uncas to be sachem of Mohegan and record his descent for diverse generations, and in those articles, he doth farther make over and quit his claim to all his lands (only reserving some parcels for his own and Indians’ use) unto this government, covenanting that this government should make use of them for farms or plantations, as they should see meet, only saving to himself a suitable satisfaction for the same when they were made up of, as they should agree.  And for a completing of this whole affair, the General Assembly of this colony appoint Robert Treat, Esq., and John Talcott, Esq., to gain a full account of the Native boundaries of Uncas, his territories, that they might be more fully informed what lands were purchased of him.  This account they perfected from one boundary to another, the evidence whereof they gained was as they report from records and from neighboring Indians, not subjects of but neighbors to Uncas, which report of theirs, under their hands, was returned to the General Assembly.  John Mason, May 13, 1664 and entered in the public records January 27, 1684.

            Notation:          John Mason 2 memorial / Uncas 2 memorial / 1715

            Cataloguing:    81, 97

  • 1. In the original the word son is crossed out and replaced with brother