Our Beloved Kin: Remapping A New History of King Philip's War

Richard Waldron's Letter: the Capture of Shoshanim

On September 2, 1676, Richard Waldron reported to Governor Leverett that the Nashaway leader Shoshanim, or Sagamore Sam, came in to Cocheco, seeking peace. As Waldron noted, Shoshanim came in "voluntarily" to "obtain peace," in line with the peace process he had helped to initiate at Wachusett, and which Wannalancet negotiated with Waldron at Cocheco. However, Waldron told Shoshanim he had come in "too late" and he "must secure him." Richard Waldron sent his letter, along with Shoshanim, when he sent him as a prisoner to Boston. This important letter is held by the Newberry Library in Chicago (AYER Mss 962, no. 2). A full transcript appears below.
Richard Waldron to Gov. Leverett, September 2, 1676, Portsmouth 
May it please your honor:
These are to accompany Sagamore Sam, with one man Indian, who owned himeselfe to be with him at Nashaway, Malborough [sic], Watchuset, &came from him to mee 2 days since & Informed mee of his coming. Ye manner of his comeing was voluntary, asking him wherefore hee came to mee, Answered hee heard there might be peace obtained, I replyed hee came to late, but now hee was come, I must secure him, and send him to ye Gov’r at Boston, to which he Answered hee willingly Submitted himselfe to there mercy, asking what more Company hee had, said one more man and 3 Squaws, ye man now lying very sick with mee, and one gun which he [dealt?] mee. Wanalanset, Sampson and Mr. Williams much begg in his behalfe to save his life, if it be possible.
As yet cannot prosecute my Intentions, referring to our Indians here* for want of ye forces designed hither which I hope this night may Rendezvous with mee.
From Black Point I rec’d Intelligence last night that as yet not Enimie there appears, and that all of ye English have Deserted yet Country farther East. Lt. Creek is safe arrived at Wells with his souldiers, which are very acceptable. So wishing a blessing upon all your undertakings, Committ you to God, remaining
Your honorable humble Servant,
Richard Waldron


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