Thomas Wheeler (soldier)

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Thomas Wheeler (c.1620, England - December 16, 1686, Concord, Massachusetts [1] ) was a colonial soldier of the Massachusetts Bay Colony. In 1675 he took part in King Philip's War; later he wrote a narrative based on his experiences. [2]

England Country in north-west Europe, part of the United Kingdom

England is a country that is part of the United Kingdom. It shares land borders with Wales to the west and Scotland to the north-northwest. The Irish Sea lies west of England and the Celtic Sea lies to the southwest. England is separated from continental Europe by the North Sea to the east and the English Channel to the south. The country covers five-eighths of the island of Great Britain, which lies in the North Atlantic, and includes over 100 smaller islands, such as the Isles of Scilly and the Isle of Wight.

Concord, Massachusetts Town in Massachusetts, United States

Concord is a town in Middlesex County, Massachusetts, in the United States. At the 2010 census, the town population was 17,668. The United States Census Bureau considers Concord part of Greater Boston. The town center is near where the confluence of the Sudbury and Assabet rivers forms the Concord River.

Massachusetts Bay Colony English possession in North America between 1628 and 1684

The Massachusetts Bay Colony (1628–1691) was an English settlement on the east coast of North America in the 17th century around the Massachusetts Bay, the northernmost of the several colonies later reorganized as the Province of Massachusetts Bay. The lands of the settlement were located in southern New England in Massachusetts, with initial settlements situated on two natural harbors and surrounding land, about 15.4 miles (24.8 km) apart—the areas around Salem and Boston.

Contents

Biography

He emigrated from England to the North American colonies in 1642. In 1644 he was living in Fairfield, Connecticut. [3] In the 1650s Wheeler was a trader; in 1657 he purchased the right to trade with the Native American tribes for twenty five pounds. Around 1661 he was one of the first people to purchase land in the Ockocangansett plantation, which later became the town of Middleborough, Massachusetts. He was made a lieutenant on October 12, 1669 and a captain in 1671. [4]

Fairfield, Connecticut Town in Connecticut, United States

Fairfield is a town in Fairfield County, Connecticut, United States. It borders the city of Bridgeport and towns of Trumbull, Easton, Weston, and Westport along the Gold Coast of Connecticut. As of the 2010 census, the town had a population of 59,404. In September 2014, Money magazine ranked Fairfield the 44th best place to live in the United States, and the best place to live in Connecticut.

Middleborough, Massachusetts Town in Massachusetts, United States

Middleborough is a town in Plymouth County, Massachusetts, United States. The population was 23,116 at the 2010 census.

A lieutenant is a junior most commissioned officer in the armed forces, fire services, police and other organizations of many nations.

In 1675 he took part in King Philip's War against the Wampanoag and Nipmuck tribes. At the beginning of the hostilities he was assigned as military escort to Cpt. Edward Hutchinson and together with him, led his men into an ambush, carried out by the Nipmucks under Muttawmp and Matoonas, at Brookfield, Massachusetts, that has become known as Wheeler's Surprise. His horse was shot out from under him and he was seriously wounded, [5] but eventually survived the battle. His son, also named Thomas Wheeler was also wounded, in the loins and arm, but also managed to survive. [6] Thomas Wheeler (senior) eventually wrote an account of the engagement which was first published in 1676 by Samuel Green, under the title "A Thankfulle Remembrence of Gods Mercy. To several Persons at Quabaug or BROOKFIELD". [7] Wheeler's work exemplifies the Puritan conception of heroism, in which a person's piety is their virtue while the credit for the victory in battle is ascribed to God. [8]

King Philips War conflict between Native American inhabitants of present-day New England and English colonists

King Philip's War was an armed conflict in 1675–78 between Indian inhabitants of New England and New England colonists and their Indian allies. The war is named for Metacomet, the Wampanoag chief who adopted the name Philip because of the friendly relations between his father Massasoit and the Mayflower Pilgrims. The war continued in the most northern reaches of New England until the signing of the Treaty of Casco Bay in April 1678.

Edward Hutchinson (1613–1675) was the oldest child of Massachusetts and Rhode Island magistrate William Hutchinson and his wife, the dissident minister Anne Hutchinson. He is noted for making peace with the authorities following his mother's banishment from Massachusetts during the Antinomian Controversy, returning to Boston, and ultimately dying in the service of the colony that had treated his family so harshly.

Muttawmp was a sachem of the Nipmuc Indians in the mid-17th century, originally based in Quaboag. He participated in King Philip's War, taking part in most of the major engagements as one of the most important chiefs who fought for Metacomet.

He died in 1686 due to complications from the wounds received at the battle of Brookfield. [4]

Notes

  1. Appletons' Cyclopædia of American Biography.
  2. Trent, pg. 99.
  3. New England Historic Genealogical Society, pg. 34
  4. 1 2 Albert Gallatin Wheeler, pg. 1
  5. Bonfanti, pg. 29
  6. Gallatin Wheeler, pg. 12
  7. Sltokin and Folsom, pg. 237
  8. Sltokin and Folsom, pg. 42

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References

William Peterfield Trent, LL.D., D.C.L. was an American academic and the author/editor of many books. He was a professor of English literature at Sewanee: The University of the South and Columbia University. While at Sewanee, he founded the Sewanee Review in 1892, a literary journal that continues to operate.

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The New England Historic Genealogical Society (NEHGS) is the oldest and largest genealogical society in the United States, founded in 1845.

<i>Appletons Cyclopædia of American Biography</i> collection of biographies of notable people involved in the history of the New World

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