Sunday, January 22, 2012

Staid and went not away

The aftermath of the King Phillip's War left the people of Providence with an abundance of  prisoners.
In August 1676 a meeting of those men referred to as those "that{staid} and went not away:" were chosen to make the final decision about these prisoners.  They had to consider that to simply release  the Indians would threaten safety of the colonists . They could  hang or shoot their prisoners but that  was a path that could likely lead to more battles later. The decision issued was as follows:

“We whose names are underwritten, being Chosen by the Town to set the
disposal of the Indians now in Town, we agree, that Roger Williams,
Nathaniel Waterman, Thomas Fenner, Henry Ashton, John Morey, Daniel
Abbott, James Olney, Valentine Whitman, John Whipple, Sen., Ephraim Pray,
John Pray, John Angell, James Angell, Thomas Arnold, Abraham Man,
Thomas Field, Edward Bennett, Thomas Clemence, William Lancaster,
William Hopkins, William Hawkins, William Harris, Zachariah Field, Samuel
Windsor, and Captain Fenner Joseph Woodward and Richard Pray, each
three fourths of a share, John Smith, Miller, and Edward Smith, Samuel Whipple,
Nelle Whipple, and Thomas Walling, each half a share. Inhabitants wanting, to
have Indians at the price they sell at Rhode Island or elsewhere. All under five
 years to serve till thirty, above five and under ten, till twenty eight, above
ten to fifteen, till twenty seven, above fifteen to twenty, till twenty six,
from twenty to thirty shall serve eight years, all above thirty, seven years.

Roger Williams Thomas Field
Thomas Harris, Sen. John Whipple, jr.
Thomas + Angell
August 14; 1676."

The committee authorized Capt. Arthur Fenner ,William Hopkins ,and John Whipple Jr. to procure a boat to transport the  Indians where they might be sold,  and after cost and reasonalble payment for their efforts the remaining funds would be divided the company _
"This being our reall act and deed as wittness our handes this 16 day of August 1676:
Roger Williams
Daniell Abbott  John Morey   Henry Ashton   Nathaniell Waterman
Ephraim Pray   Joseph Woodward   Abraham Man   Eliazur Whipple
John Angell   James Olney  James Angell  Vallintine Whittman
Edward Bennett  Thomas Field   John Pray-”

Now one might wonder why ther appears to be a length of servitude attached to this sale.   It seems that in March 1675,before the troubles had begun,  legislature of Rhode Island had passed a law “that noe Indian in this Collony be a slave, but only to pay their debts or for their bringeing up, or Custody they have
received, or to performed Covenant as if they had been Countrymen and not taken in war.” 
Did the committee believe that by imposing time limits  it made the sale into an  contract of servitude for debt repayment?
 Here is an accounting of at least a part of the sale
To Anthony Low, five Indians, great and small, £8.
'To James Rogers, two, for twenty two bushels of Indian corn.
'To Philip Smith, two, in silver, £4, 10.
'To Daniel Allen, one, in silver, £2, 10.
'To Caleb Carr, one, twelve bushels of Indian corn.
'To Elisha Smith, one, in wool, 100 lbs.
'To Elisha Smith, one, for three fat sheep

Daniel Abbott listed is my 8th grand uncle and Thomas Walling is my 7th great grandfather.
  He is the son of "Bad Boy Thomas" who died between 1674 and 1675, before the war. Thomas Jr. would have been only 21 maybe 22 when this occurred.

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