Bidwell Lore – The Dispossession of Stockbridge Mohican Land by the Ball Family, Part V

Welcome to Bidwell Lore number 119! This week we continue with the “Dispossession of Stockbridge Mohican Land by the Ball Family, 1772-1781” written by Rick Wilcox. He shares the story of Isaac Ball and his role in the Mohicans losing their land in and around Stockbridge.

Dispossession of Stockbridge Mohican Land by the Ball Family 1772-1781, Part V
Isaac Ball (1744-1784)
Rick Wilcox 2022

Indian Proprietor Records

The Indian Proprietor Records were required by law to be kept and even the ledger book was required to be of a certain dimension and manufactured for that purpose. For the Stockbridge Indian Proprietorship Records, there are 163 pages, and those records were kept from 1750 to 1790. Several years ago, I transcribed the Indian Proprietor Records and a portion of that transcription will follow below. I have included some of the beginning pages to give the reader a sense of the document. For some, that may seem a tease, but I want to reduce the remainder to those pertaining to Isaac and/or Jonathan Ball. There are many grants to Mohicans who do not show up in the index, but are found in the body of the Records.

The first page in the book is blank with exception of the number 68 in the upper right-hand corner. The second page has a survey of “A Plat of the Burying Ground” [A] with rods and degrees by triangulation off the northeast corner of the first meetinghouse. Page three is a blank page and page four begins the index below:

A chart of Indian Proprietor Records
A chart of Indian Proprietor Records
A chart of Indian Proprietor Records
A chart of Indian Proprietor Records

After the above list came two blank pages. Then the following page states: “The land of said Isaac Ball was laid out to Joseph Shauquethquot see 112 page.” Page (1) follows. Again there is a “68” in the upper right-hand corner of page one.

 (Page 106)
Voted to adjourn The meeting of the proprietors to the Eleventh day of January Next to one of the clock in the afternoon of said day to meet at the house of Timothy Woodbridge Esq.
The said proprietors met according to adjournment being Saturday the Eleventh day of January 1772. – and proceeded to business
And passed the following Votes (viz.) That the fifty acre Lot [12] which Joseph Shauquesquot [13] the Son of Benjamin Kokhkewenaunaut Sold to Isaac Ball and Jonathan Ball be confirmed to the said Isaac and Jonathan by virtue of said Sale as fully and absolutely as if the Same had been granted and Surveyed to the said Joseph before said sale was made.

(Page 112)
Surveyed In the Township of Stockbridge for Joseph Sauqueesquot of the Common and undivided Land fifty acres lying South of Elihu Mighall’s Lot The said Survey begins at the Southwest corner of said Mighall’s [14] Lot by the river Then runs west Seven degrees and Thirty minutes North one hundred and forty four rods To a Stake and Stones four rods west of Said Mighall’s South west Corner, Then South Eight degrees West Twenty five rods to a beach Tree The North east corner of Griswould’s [15] four acre pitch. Then South Twenty five degrees west Thirty five rods to a Stake The South east corner of Griswould’s pitch and in Hunnibel Negro’s North line Then east Thirty degrees South four rods and an half rod in said Hunnibel’s North line to a Stake and Stones Then East Seven degrees and Thirty minutes South one hundred and Thirty rods To a hemlock Tree on the bank of the river Then by said River to the first bounds allowance being made for the high way thro the same
Surveyed May 11th 1771
Recorded January 23 1772 [16]

Next week we continue to discuss the listings for Isaac Bell in the Indian Proprietor Records.

A. The Town Cemetery
1. Free Black
2. Probably Samuel Brown, Jr.
3. “ …granted to Indians of other Tribes…”
4. More commonly spelled Etowaukaum
5. Old Section of Town Cemetery
6. Alias for John Konkapot
7. Also spelled Hunabel Negro, who married a Stockbridge Indian woman
8. Daughter of Wohcoheeksmeek
9. Commonly spelled Kohkewenaunant
10. Commonly spelled Nuanaumphtaunk
11. Commonly spelled Nungkauwot, son of John Konkapot
12. No deed found, BMRD Book 16, page 118, 199, 120, 121.  Isaac retained 50 acres. Jonathan retained fifty acres. Isaac’s land is now land that contains Chesterwood Museum
13. Also spelled Shauquethquot and Shauquethqueat
14. Miles. Near the intersection of Mohawk and West Dale Road
15. Griswould owned property in the area of Mohawk Lake Road and West Dale Road, his house still stands there.
16. All of them neighbors of Isaac Ball