New Exhibit Tells Little-Known Story of Wampanoags Sold into Slavery

A new exhibit called "Captured: 1620" on display at Plymouth Public Library tells the story of an incident when Wampanoags were captured and sold as slaves.

A new exhibit called “Captured: 1614” on display at Plymouth Public Library tells the story of an incident when Wampanoags were captured and sold as slaves.

MASHPEE – The story of what happened to a band of Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe members in 1614 is well-known among members of today’s tribe but most others have never heard the shocking story–until now.

“Captured: 1614″ is a new exhibit researched and assembled by Paula Peters, a member of the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe.

The exhibit is the first educational exhibit that is part of Plymouth 400, the effort to commemorate the 400th anniversary of the Pilgrim’s settlement in Plimoth.

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The exhibit was unveiled at Plymouth Public Library in Plymouth just before Thanksgiving.

According to Plymouth 400, the interactive exhibit shines a light on a 400-year-old piece of history that had a significant impact on the Wampanoag tribe, their relationship with the Mayflower Pilgrims, and the founding of Plymouth Colony.

Told from the Native perspective, “Captured: 1614” details the 1614 kidnapping of 20 Wampanoag men from Patuxet, the Wampanoag village that eventually became Plymouth Colony, by European explorers who planned to sell them as slaves in Spain.

Only one of the Native men is known to have returned home: Tisquantum, otherwise known as Squanto.

“Captured: 1614” will be expanded each year leading up to 2020 with more pieces of Wampanoag history, and will travel to other public libraries and museums throughout the region, according to organizers.

This exhibit will be open to the public at Plymouth Public Library through Spring 2015.

Listen below to Paula Peters discussing “Captured: 1614”: