Choosing Survival: Wabanaki Documents at the Maine State Archives




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Maine State Archives

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In the 1794 treaty with Massachusetts, the Passamaquoddy retained rights to 100 acres at Nemcass Point (or Governor’s Point), a peninsula on Big Lake in Hinkley Township, situated west of Indian Township. As landowners bought and sold portions of this township, a land deed omitted an exclusionary clause about the tribal land, leading to a land dispute. After Passamaquoddy leaders petitioned Maine to assert their rights to Nemcass Point, surveyor John Gardner produced this 1855 map delineating the property line separating tribal and private lands. Chief Peol Tomah farmed Nemcass Point and withstood harassment from adjacent settlers who wanted the land. However, after decades of farming the point, Tomah’s death in 1890 resulted in Nemcass Point being sold. [Description Text by Micah A. Pawling, Ph.D]

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John Gardner’s Survey Map of Nemcass Point (or Governor’s Point) on Big Lake (watercolor), containing 100 acres for the Passamaquoddy Tribe



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