Doeg tribe

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Doeg
Total population
Extinct as a tribe
Regions with significant populations
Virginia and Maryland
Languages
Piscataway or Nanticoke (historical)
Religion
Native religion
Related ethnic groups
Nanticoke

The Doeg (also spelled Doages, Dogues, Taux, Dogi, Tacci, etc.) were a Native American tribe who lived in Virginia. They spoke an Algonquian language and may have been a branch of the Nanticoke tribe, historically based on the Eastern Shore of Maryland. The Nanticoke considered the Algonquian Lenape as "grandfathers". The Doeg are known for a raid in July 1675 that contributed to colonists' uprising in Bacon's Rebellion.

Background[edit]

The Doeg (or Dogue) tribe of Virginia were part of the coastal Algonquian language family. They probably spoke Piscataway or a dialect similar to Nanticoke.

According to one account, the Doeg had been based in what is now King George County, but about 50 years before the founding of Jamestown (ca. 1557), they split into three sections, with groups going to Caroline County and Prince William County, and one remaining in King George.[1]:4

When Captain John Smith visited the upper Potomac River in 1608, he noted that the Taux lived there above Aquia Creek, with their capital Tauxenent located on "Doggs Island" (also known as Miompse or May-Umps, now Mason Neck, Virginia.) They gathered fish and also grew corn. Other hamlets were at Pamacocack (later anglicized to "Quantico"), along Quantico Creek; Yosococomico (now Powell's Creek); and Niopsco (Neabsco Creek). Associated with them were other nearby Algonquian peoples — the Moyauns (Piscataway) on the Maryland side, and the Nacotchtank (Anacostan) in what is now the Washington, DC area. Smith's map also shows a settlement called Tauxsnitania, thought to be near present-day Waterloo in Fauquier County, within the territory of the Siouan-speaking Manahoac tribe.

John Lederer, who visited the Piedmont region of Virginia in 1670, wrote that the entire area had been

"formerly possessed by the Tacci, alias Dogi, but... the Indians now seated here, are distinguished into the several [Siouan] nations of Mahoc, Nuntaneuck alias Nuntaly, Nahyssan, Sapon, Managog, Mangoack, Akernatatzy and Monakin etc." Further, "The Indians now seated in these parts [the Siouans] are none of those whom the English removed from Virginia [the Doeg], but a people driven by the enemy [Erie?] from the northwest, and invited to sit down here by an oracle above four hundred years since, as they pretend for the ancient inhabitants of Virginia were far more rude and barbarous, feeding only upon raw flesh and fish, until they taught them to plant corn..."[2]

The frontier[edit]

In the 1650s, as English colonists began to settle the Northern Neck frontier, then known as Chicacoan (Secocowon), some Doeg, Patawomeck and Rappahannock began moving into the region as well. They joined local tribes in disputing the settlers' claims to land and resources. In July 1666, the colonists declared war on them. By 1669, colonists had patented the land on the west of the Potomac as far north as My Lord's Island. By 1670, they had driven most of the Doeg out of the Virginia colony and into Maryland—apart from those living beside the Nanzatico/Portobago in Caroline County, Virginia.[3]:97

The Doeg continued to harass the English on the Northern Neck. In 1675, a Doeg raiding party crossed the Potomac and stole some hogs from Thomas Mathew, in retaliation for his not paying them for trade goods. Mathew and other colonists pursued them to Maryland and killed a few Doeg, as well as innocent Susquehannock. A Doeg war party retaliated by killing Mathew's son and two servants on his plantation.

A Virginian militia led by Nathaniel Bacon entered Maryland, attacked the Doeg and besieged the Susquehannock. This precipitated the general reaction against natives by the Virginia Colony that resulted in "Bacon's Rebellion". Following this conflict, the Doeg seem to have become allied with the Nanzatico tribe, who paid for the release of some Doeg jailed for killing livestock in early 1692.[3]:104 The Doeg maintained a presence near Nanzatico at "Doguetown" (around Milford in Caroline County) as late as 1720.[1]:43

Hoax?[edit]

The Reverend Morgan Jones reportedly told Thomas Lloyd, William Penn's deputy, that he had been captured in 1669 by a tribe of the Iroquoian-speaking Tuscarora in North Carolina. He claimed they were called the "Doeg". Jones said the chief spared his life when he heard Jones speak Welsh and further, that the chief understood it. Jones further claimed he stayed with the Doeg and preached to them for months. Returned to the English Colonies, he wrote down his adventure in 1686. His account caused some to speculate that these Doeg were related to the legendary Welsh prince Madoc;[4] however, historian Gwyn A. Williams says, "This is a complete farrago and may have been intended as a hoax."[5]:76

Dogue[edit]

Dogue, Virginia is named in honor of this tribe.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Campbell, Thomas Elliott (1954). Colonial Caroline: a history of Caroline County, Virginia. Dietz Press. Retrieved 18 August 2011. 
  2. ^ Alvord, Clarence Walworth; Bidgood, Lee (1912). The first explorations of the Trans-Allegheny region by the Virginians, 1650-1674. Arthur H. Clark. p. 142. Retrieved 18 August 2011. 
  3. ^ a b Rountree, Helen C. (January 1996). Pocahontas's people: the Powhatan Indians of Virginia through four centuries. University of Oklahoma Press. ISBN 978-0-8061-2849-8. Retrieved 18 August 2011. 
  4. ^ Owen, Nicholas (1777). British remains: or, A collection of antiquities relating to the Britons. J. Bew. p. 110. Retrieved 18 August 2011. 
  5. ^ Williams, Gwyn A. (1979). Madoc, the making of a myth. Eyre Methuen. ISBN 978-0-413-39450-7. Retrieved 17 August 2011.