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Mahican Tribe

Mahican Indians (‘wolf’). An Algonquian tribe that occupied both banks of upper Hudson River, in New York, extending north almost to Lake Champlain. To the Dutch they were known as River Indians, while the French grouped them and the closely connected Munsee and Delawares under the name of Loups (‘wolves’). The same tribes were called Akochakane├▒ (‘stammerers’ ) by the Iroquois. On the west bank they joined the Munsee at Catskill creek, and on the east bank they joined the Wappinger near Poughkeepsie. They extended north into Massachusetts and held the upper part of Housatonic valley. Their council fire was at Schodac, on an island near Albany, and it is probable that they had 40 villages within their territory. The name, in a variety of forms, has been applied to all the Indians from Hudson river to Narragansett bay, but in practical use has been limited to two bodies, one on lower Connecticut river, Connecticut, known dialectically as Mohegan, the other, on Hudson river, known as Mahican. They were engaged in a war with the Mohawk, their nearest neighbors on the west, when the Dutch appeared on the scene, which lasted until 1673. In 1664 the inroads of the Mohawk compelled them to remove their council fire from Schodac to Westenhuck, the modern Stockbridge, Massachusetts. As the settlements crowded upon them the Mahican sold their territory piece meal, and about 1730 a large body of them emigrated to Susquehanna river and settled near Wyoming, Pennyslvania, in the vicinity of the Delawares and Munsee, with whom they afterward removed to the Ohio region, finally losing their identity. A previous emigration...

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