VIII. Jefferson’s Vocabulary of the Unquachog Indians
[14 June 1791]
Unquachogs. About 20. souls. They constitute the Pusspátock settlement in the town of Brookhaven S. side of Long island.
The language they speak is a dialect differing a little from the Indians settled near Southampton called Shinicocks and also from those of Montock called Montocks. The three tribes can barely understand each other.
The orthography is English. This Vocabulary was taken by Th: J. June 13. 1791.1 in presence of James Madison and Genl. Floyd. There remain but three persons of this tribe now who can speak it’s language. These are old women. From two of these, brought together, this vocabulary was taken. A young woman of the same tribe was also present who knew something of the language.
MS (PPAP); written on an address leaf entirely in TJ’s hand except for the address: “Honble Thomas Jefferson Esq.” which is in the hand of Robert R. Livingston (see Editorial Note). Tr (same); in hand of Peter S. Du Ponceau, transcribed in his volume of “Indian Vocabularies Collected September 1820,” p. 46–8.
1. Thus in MS. The travel notes in the Account Book show that TJ “visited the Unquachog Indians” on the 14th.