Language: Wappinger
Family: Eastern Algonquian
Stock: Algonquian
Phylum: Algic
Macro-Culture: Eastern Woodlands
Speakers None
      The Wappinger were a sedentary hunter/farmer nation.  They were located along the east bank of the Hudson River from Manhattan to Poughkeepsie and eastward to the lower Connecticut Valley.  The tribes was destroyed in conflict with other tribes and Whites.  The relatively few survivors absorbed into other cultures.
Aboriginal Locations: Subdivisions (Villages)
CT    (56)
NY   (12)
Present Locations
Extinct as a culture with some descendants in surviving tribes
Year History
1524 Giovanni da Verrazano discovered the narrow entrance to New York harbor which today bears his name
1609 Henry Hudson entered the mouth of the Hudson River; attacked by the Wappinger before having a peaceful meeting and then attacked again at a later date
1613 Dutch bypassed the Wappinger and opened their first trading post (Fort Nassau) on Castle Island just south of Albany
1617 Dutch abandoned Fort Nassau due to war with Mahican and Mohawk
1624 Dutch built a new post (Fort Orange) at present-day Albany
1636 Smallpox epidemic
1642 Mahicans killed 17 of Wecquaesgeek band and kidnapped a number of women and children
1643 Dutch exterminated the remainder of the band "Pavonia Massacre" except for 30 prisoners; Wappinger War (Governor Kieft's War 1643-45) followed; 500 to 700 Wappinger were killed in a massacre
1645 More than 1,600 Wappinger and their allies had been killed
1656 Smallpox epidemic
1664 British fleet captured New Amsterdam
1683 Wappinger sold more than 100,000 acres between 1683-1685 east of the Hudson
1692 Smallpox epidemic
1756 Western bands joined the Nanticoke who in turn joined the Delaware
1774 The balance of the Wappinger joined the Stockbridge except for remnants who remained and absorbed into other cultures
Year Total  Population CT NY Source
1600 4,750     Mooney estimate
1700 1,000 800 200 NAHDB calculation
1800 0     NAHDB calculation
1900 0     NAHDB calculation 
2000 0     NAHDB calculation 
Other speakers of the same language:
Wappinger Sites:
Great Swamp Canoe
Ode to the Bronx River
Wappinger History
Wappinger Indian Tribal History

Last updated 10/06/05  Copyright 2005 by Four Directions Press