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Elizabeth A.Sackler Center for Feminist Art

Awashonks

Flourished circa 1671, Rhode Island

Awashonks was a Native American woman who served as chief of the Sakonnet tribe in Seconet, Rhode Island. In 1671, she was among the signers of a peace agreement between a confederation of local tribes and Plymouth Colony. However, she supported Chief Metacom when, after suffering years of humiliation at the hands of the whites, he broke the treaty in 1675 and attacked the English settlers. The conflict, known as King Philip’s War, ended in a white victory in 1676, but by that time Awashonks had made peace with the settlers and switched sides.