The following post was submitted by Michael P. Dyer, Maritime Curator, New Bedford Whaling Museum.
In 1652 Governor William Bradford, Captain Myles Standish, Thomas Southworth, John Winslow, John Cooke & their associates all representatives of the Plymouth Colony purchased the territory of Dartmouth, Massachusetts from the Wampanoag Confederacy represented by Wosemequin (Massasoit) and his son Wamsutta for the following price:
“Thirty yards of cloth, eight moose skins, fifteen axes, fifteen hoes, fifteen pairs of breeches, eight blankets, two kettles, one cloak, ₤22 in wampum, eight pairs stockings, eight pairs shoes, one iron pot, and ten shillings in another commodite.” (Facsimile reproduction of the deed and a transcription published in Dartmouth Tercentenary, 1664-1964).
Over the next year the museum’s staff is examining the growth of maritime New Bedford and its surrounding region in preparation for an exhibition entitled “Birth of a Seaport.” An important component of the exhibition will be to demonstrate to our visitors the exact value that the native people of the area sold it for at the time.
Toward that end we are seeking to borrow eight moose hides for the duration of the exhibition. Any persons with information about available moose hides should please contact:Michael P. Dyer Maritime Curator New Bedford Whaling Museum 18 Johnny Cake Hill New Bedford, MA 02740 (508) 717-6837