John Milton Earle’s Miscellaneous Indians

What is John Milton Earle’s Miscellaneous Indians list? What tribe or tribes did these families and individuals belong to? And why are we still debating this????

Background Information

In 1859, John Milton Earle, of Worcester, MA, was selected to research the number and condition of Indians in Massachusetts. This was in preparation for the enfranchisement of Native peoples in the state. Earle’s report is formally known as the Mass. Senate Report #96 of 1861. But most people refer to it as the 1861 (or 1859) Earle Report.

Scan of heading of the Miscellaneous List

At a recent meeting, someone called this portion of the report a non-Nipmuc list. Not so. In the picture above, one can read where Earle placed individuals with the blood of multiple tribes or out-of-state tribes. The individuals are still classified as Indian. The list does not reference any tribe in particular.These individuals and families could have descended from any of the tribes documented in the report (such as Dudley, Troy, or Mashpee) or none of those tribes (ie. Narragansett, Pequot, etc.).

Will the Miscellaneous Indians list lead you to your ancestors tribal origins. Not directly. But it will give you information on your ancestors family members and residence. Use those leads to find what you seek.


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