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Topic: Susquehanna

Map of Zwaanendael

Nautical chart of Zwaanendael (“Swanendael”) and Godyn’s Bay in New Netherland. Zwaanendael was a patroonship founded by Samuel Godyn, a director of the Dutch West India Company, in 1629. Godyn made his land claim to the West India Company under jurisdiction of the Charter of Freedoms and Exemptions. After a short time, the initial 32 inhabitants were murdered by local Indians and Godyn sold his land back to the West India Company. The West India Company kept the names of the local area, including Godyn’s Bay, which eventually became Delaware Bay. The text in Dutch at left side of...

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Susquehanna Tribe

Susquehanna Indians. A town and a tribe of the Iroquoian stock, situated in 1608 on the lower portion of the Susquehanna river and its effluents. The original form of the name used by Capt. John Smith was Sasquesahannocks in his text and Sasquesahanough on his map. He first heard the name from Tockwock, Nanticoke, or Powhatan speakers of the Algonquian tongue, while exploring the waters of upper Chesapeake bay and its affluents, as the designation of a mighty people who dwelt on the Susquehanna two days journey “higher than our barge could pass for rocks.” Of this people Smith wrote: “Such great and well-proportioned men are seldom seen, for they seemed like giants to the English, yea to their neighbors;” also that they were scarcely known to Powhatan, could muster nearly 600 able men, and lived in palisaded towns to defend themselves from the “Massawomeckes, their mortal enemies.” Meeting at the head of the bay 60 of their warriors, five of their chiefs did not hesitate to hoard his barge. Although in his text Smith does not mention the names of any Susquehanna towns, he nevertheless places on his map 6 towns with” king’s houses” under the general rubric “Sasquesahanough.” The six are Sasquesahanough, Quadroque, Attaock, Tesinigh, Utchowig, and Cepowig. It is difficult to locate these towns correctly on a modern map; the foregoing names are evidently highly conventionalized...

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