The Portsmouth Treaty of 1713

In July 1713, a cessation of hostilities was sought from the indigenous populations of the coast of Maine and New Hampshire. Members of those communities --  described in the document as the "Eastern tribes" --  were brought to Portsmouth; and after three days, signed a document now called the 1713 Treaty of Portsmouth.

According to records in the Baxter Manuscripts, A Documentary History of the State of Maine, published in 1913 (in the collection of the Maine Historical Society in Portland), the events unfolded as follows:

1713 Jul 11              Governor meeting with Sachems at Portsmouth (Baxter Mss 23:37 ff)

1713 Jul 13              Treaty of Portsmouth signed at Piscataqua

1713 Jul 16              Sachems depart The Fort  in New Castle by ship for Casco

1713 Jul 17              First assembly re: Treaty at Casco

1713 Jul 18              Gathering of 180 men of the tribes to hear Treaty

1713 Jul 23              Report of Wheelright, Wentworth, Redknap, Vaughan, Jaffrey in Portsmouth

The Treaty is four pages long and is currently a part of the Levi Woodbury Collection at the Library of Congress. The image above is courtesy of the LOC. A transcription of page one reads:

"At Portsmouth, in Her Majesty's Province of New
Hampshire, in New England, the thirteenth day
of July, in the twelfth year of the Reign of our
Sovereign Lady Anne, by the Grace of God, of
Great Britain, France, and Ireland, Queen,
Defender of the Faith, &c.


Whereas for some years last past we have made a breach of our fidelity and loyalty to the Crowns of Great Britain, and have made open rebellion against Her Majesty's subjects, the English inhabitants in the Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and other of her Majesty's territories in New England, and being now sensible of the myseries which We and our people are reduced thereunto thereby, we whose names are here subscribed, being delegates of all the Indians belonging to Norrigawake, Narrakamegock, Amascontoog, Pigwocket, Penecook, and to all other Indian plantations situated on the Rivers of St. Johns, Penobscot, Kenybeck, Amascogon, Saco, and Merimack, and all other Indian plantations Iying between the said Rivers of St. Johns and Merrimack, parts of Her Majesty's Provinces of the Massachusetts Bay and New Hampshire, within Her Majesty's Sovereignty, having made application to his Excellency, Joseph Dudley, Esq., Captain General and Governor in Chief in and over the said Provinces, that the troubles which we have unhappily raised or occasioned against Her Majesty's subjects, the English, and ourselves, may cease and have an end, and that we may enjoy Her Majesty's grace and favor, and each of us respectively, for ourselves and in the name and with the free consent of all the Indians belonging to the several rivers and places aforesaid, and all other Indians within the said Provinces of the Massachusetts Bay and New Hampshire, hereby acknowledging ourselves the lawfull subjects of our Sovereign Lady, Queen Anne, and promising our hearty subjection and obedience unto the Crown of Great Britain, doe solemnly covenant, promise, and agree to and with the said Joseph Dudley, Esqre., Governor, and all such as shall hereafter be in the place of Captain, General and Governor in Chief of the aforesaid Provinces or territories on Her Majesty's behalf, in manner following. That is to say:

That at all times forever, from and after the date of these presents, we will cease and forebear all acts of hostility toward all the subjects of the Crown of Great Britain, and not to offer the least hurt or violence to them or any of them in their persons or estates, but will honor, forward, hold, and maintain a firm and constant amity and friendship with all the English, and will not entertain any treasonable conspiracy with any other nation to their disturbance.

That Her Majesty's subjects, the English, shall and may peaceably and quietly enter upon, improve, and forever enjoy, all and singular their rights of land and former settlements, properties and possessions, within the eastern parts of said Provinces of the Massachusetts Bay and New Hampshire, together with all the Islands, Islets, Shoars, Beaches, and Fisheries within the same, without any molestation or claims by us or any other Indians and be in no wais molested, interrupted, or disturbed therein. Saving unto the said Indians their own Grounds, and free liberty for Hunting, Fishing, Fowling, and...

This image is an authorized reproduction of the copy of the Treaty now in the Levi Woodbury Papers Collection at the US Library of Congress. See Treaty of Portsmouth, page tw0.

For images of two additional copies of the Treaty of 1713 from the collection of the British National Archives -- with variations in the signatures, click:
UK version 1:
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Page 2 Page 2

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UK version 2:

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