Mashpee Wampanoag

Mashpee is a town located on Cape Cod, Massachusetts has been the home of the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe for approximately 12,000 years.  The Mashpee Wampanoag are one of the original sixty-nine tribes that belonged to the Wampanoag Nation.  Originally, the Marshpee (later called Mashpee) Tribe was under the oversight of English missionaries for nearly 200 years.  The reservation period in Mashpee officially began in 1677 and restricted the freedom of the Mashpee Wampanoag people until 1868.  From that time up until around 1975 the tribal people were in control of the Mashpee town government, were active business owners and the predominant town residents.  As town and federal politics dramatically changed over the years, the tribe maintained its autonomy as a non-profit organization until 2007 when federal recognition was finally granted after a 30-year legal land suit.
 
The Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe has both traditional and conventional leadership and maintains a government-to-government relationship with all federal agencies to support the health, education, and welfare needs of the tribe.  The traditional leadership includes the Chief and his Circle of advisers, Medicine Man, and Clan Mothers.  The Chief and Medicine Man have permanent seats at the Tribal Council table to ensure cultural concerns are included in decision-making. Tribal members seek advice, ceremony, and social justice from these leaders.
 
Economically, the tribe has adapted and maintained a number of different survival methods besides hunting, fishing, and planting.  During the 17thand 18th Centuries tribesmen were involved in the fur, rope, timber, and sassafras trade.  Then in the 19th and early 20th centuries, they engaged in the whaling industry, sailing the Atlantic, Pacific, Arctic, and Indian Oceans.  
Recent DH Items
1753.12.11.00_page1petitions_masa_na_45X_0032_0065_0001.jpg
Community
Native Northeast Research Collaborative, Mashpee Wampanoag
Category
Work, Poverty, & Economy, Geography, Land, & the Environment, Culture & Society, Politics, Power, & Sovereignty
Summary
An answer, by the Guardians of the Mashpee Indians, to complaints regarding infringements on the Mashpee's lands
1780.03.14.00_page1petitions_masa_na_45X_0186_0003_0001.jpg
Community
Native Northeast Research Collaborative, Mashpee Wampanoag
Category
Work, Poverty, & Economy, Politics, Power, & Sovereignty
Summary
A request for direction in paying the expense associated with the care and supported
1758.09.05.00_page1petitions_masa_na_45X_0033_0019_0001.jpg
Community
Native Northeast Research Collaborative, Mashpee Wampanoag
Category
Education, Religion, & Missionary Efforts, Geography, Land, & the Environment, Politics, Power, & Sovereignty
Summary
A request that Gideon Hawley be granted land for a house lot, improvement rights to 30 cleared acres, and, while minister to the tribe, use of enough marsh land so as to harvest five tons of hay, and the right to harvest firewood from tribal lands
1761.01.09.00_page1petitions_masa_na_45X_0033_0035_0001.jpg
Community
Native Northeast Research Collaborative, Mashpee Wampanoag
Category
Work, Poverty, & Economy, Geography, Land, & the Environment, Politics, Power, & Sovereignty
Summary
A request that four pounds be granted the petitioner to defray the costs associated with attending Court to answer complaints brought by Rueben Cognehew
1776.00.00.00_page1petitions_masa_na_45X_0144_0010_0001.jpg
Community
Native Northeast Research Collaborative, Mashpee Wampanoag
Category
Education, Religion, & Missionary Efforts, Geography, Land, & the Environment, Politics, Power, & Sovereignty
Summary
A request for liberty to sell a parcel of unimproved common land to Simeon and Nathaniel Fish