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On This Day in Rotten History: May 26th

In 1637 – (381 years ago) — more than a hundred English Puritan colonists were joined by some two hundred indigenous Mohegan, Narragansett, and Niantic warriors in an attack on a fortified Pequot village near the Mystic River in what is now southeastern Connecticut. The Mohegans, in particular, had once been in a single tribe with the Pequots before the two groups split over tensions regarding trade with English and Dutch settlers. But now the Mohegans were allied with the English, who had their own territorial and trade ambitions and had been at war with the Pequots for almost a year. In an early morning raid led by two English captains, the combined forces surrounded the Pequot village, breached its wooden palisade, and forced their way in. The Pequot defenders quickly fought them off, so the English responded by setting the whole village on fire, blocking its two exits, and shooting anyone who tried to come out. Within a half hour, some four hundred to five hundred men, women, and children were horribly burned to death. The few villagers who managed to escape were quickly hunted down and shot. After another year of war with the settlers, the Pequot would effectively cease to exist as a tribe, and the stage was set for further colonial expansion in New England.

Rotten History is written by Renaldo Migaldi.

Rotten History


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