The Bounty Teacher's Guide
The Fourth Anglo-Abenaki War
Fourth Anglo-Abenaki War (1722-1727)
aka Dummer’s War, Father Rasle’s War, Lovewell’s War, Grey Lock’s War
During this conflict, Massachusetts, Connecticut, and New Hampshire governments issued ten known bounty proclamations. Nineteen known scalp-bounty claims were awarded to scalpers between 1720-1727: 14 in cash and five in land. At least 28 additional land claims were made in the period between the 4th and 5th Anglo-Abenaki Wars. These were allocated to soldiers and their heirs, who had fought in this and previous Anglo-Abenaki wars, as far back as Pometacomet's Resistance/King Philip's War, resulting in dispossession and redistribution of tens of thousands of acres of Wabanaki homelands. For a detailed list see the e-timeline.
Despite a fragile period of peace following the 1713 Treaty of Portsmouth, wars impacting Wabanaki and Europeans continued. In 1720 and prior to the Fourth Anglo-Abenaki War, Boston land speculators known as the Muscongus Proprietors had pushed the English frontier eastward to the St. George River in present-day Thomaston, Maine, violating the Treaty of 1713. They attempted to justify new land grants based on the Madockawando deed of 1694, which was repeatedly repudiated and invalidated by Wabanaki leaders. The tenuous peace crumbled, and Massachusetts Governor Shute blamed the Kennebecs and French influence of Father Rasles. When four Kennebec sagamores attending talks in Boston were taken hostage, the Wabanaki issued a statement written by Father Rasles, declaring that the Creator had placed them on the land first and the English could not claim it by conquest, gift, or purchase. In 1721, authorities from the Massachusetts colony kidnapped Baron de St. Castin, who had aligned with Wabanaki people to drive the English from Maine in the late 1600s, and they almost captured Father Rasles, who had a bounty placed on his head. 
Two bounty acts were issued by Massachusetts in 1722, one in January and the other in August, as well as one issued by New Hampshire. Here we see the link between a bounty act and a bounty claim, as in this one made by Johnson Harmon.
Soon thereafter, in 1722, the War began as a series of skirmishes in Wabanaki and Abenaki territory in Maine and Vermont, where the French and English continued to vie for power. Two bounty acts were issued this year, one in January and the other in August. “In January 1722, a party of one hundred English soldiers pillaged Norridgewock’s church.... In revenge for this attack about forty Norridgewocks burned houses and a mill at the English settlement of Merrymeeting Bay.” 
On July 25, 1722, Lieutenant Governor Dummer declared war on the Abenakis, offering recruits gifts, arms, and ammunition, as well as substantial scalp bounties.
Here, too, we see the link between a bounty act and bounty claim.
Wabanaki leader Grey Lock led a series of retaliatory attacks against English settlements. Originally from the Connecticut River Valley, Grey Lock lived in Missisquoi (present-day Vermont) and from there he responded to continued English aggression by organizing a series of raids on English settlements after the English declared war on the Wabanaki in 1722.
Grey Lock, who came to be known as “Wawanolewat” or “he who fools the others or puts someone off track” took great advantage of the disparity between Native and English regional knowledge. Using established networks and paths, he was able to quickly strike settlements and then disappear northwards. 
Responding to Wabanaki raids in March 1723, acting Governor William Dummer sent militia under Colonel Thomas Westbrook into the Kennebec region to burn Wabanaki villages and fields. 
[t]he Massachusetts government offered presents, arms, and ammunition, as well as substantial scalp bounties “for the further Encouragement of your Warlike people” — one hundred pounds in New England currency for the scalps of males aged twelve and over, fifty pounds for all others. The warriors were also to receive fifty pounds for each prisoner and to be allowed to keep all plunder and all female captives and prisoners under twelve…. 
Colonel Westbrook, Major Benjamin Church (who readers will recall from the First and Second Anglo-Abenaki Wars), and other veteran bounty hunters contacted local militia officers when they wanted to recruit new eligible men to replenish their fighting forces. In the 1720s, Westbrook informed the government that “I believe I can enlist the number of thirty men & more generally young men and such as must leave the county if not enlisted.” 
The captains initially commissioned under Colonel Thomas Westbrook included Johnson Harmon, Jeremiah Moulton, Richard Bourne and Bean (aka Bane). In 1724, the Wabanaki villages of Norridgewock and Pigwacket were assaulted and destroyed under the command of Johnson Harmon and Jeremiah Moulton from York, Maine. They were intent on scalping Wabanaki people and attacked them while they slept.
The raiding party, numbering 205 white and three Mohawk, including the old scout Christian, left Fort Richmond on August 8 in seventeen whaleboats. Arriving at Teconnet on the 9th, they left the whaleboats under the protection of an officer and forty men and the rest proceeded on foot. As they approached the village, Harmon took sixty men to destroy the cornfields while Moulton ordered ten men to guard the packs. The remainder of the force, after a brief firefight, charged through the village, driving the people across the river where they fled on foot and sought sanctuary with their relatives from other Wabanaki tribes. After torching the village, the raiding party returned to Fort Richmond on the 16th, and Johnson Harmon made his report in Boston on August 22nd. 
Harmon and his men killed a hundred Wabanaki and scalped 27 dead corpses, receiving the sum of 60 pounds for each scalp. Among the victims were Father Rasles, as well as the Wabanaki leader Bombazens and his daughter (his wife was also taken prisoner). 
To sharpen our understanding of events during this period of violence, let us recall that the English, who were Protestants, tried to weaken the relationship between the Mi’kmaq and the Acadians, who were Catholic. On August 1, 1722, the English Governor of Acadia, Richard Philipp, issued a proclamation that declared it illegal for Acadians to engage with Mi’kmaq in any manner. How strictly this proclamation was enforced is reflected in the minutes of the Council meeting held on May 22, 1725.
The Honourable Lt. Governor, John Doucett, acquainted the board that Prudane Robichau, senior inhabitant in the Cape, had entertained an Indian in his house, contrary to His Excellency’s proclamation, dated August 1, 1722. That he had therefore put him in irons and in prison amongst the Indians for such heinous demeanour. This was to terrify the other inhabitants from clandestine practices of betraying the English subjects, into Indian hands. 
In a letter found by troops who stormed Norridgewock, Rasles laments, “the English still keep their forts and … unless the French join with the Indians the land is lost. This is what now discourages the Indians.” As the priest saw it, Wabanaki homelands were at the heart of the violence. The Norridgewock Massacre was considered the biggest colonial victory in half a century over the Wabanaki. In a grotesque display of vengeance, Harmon’s men paraded through Boston streets with Kennebec scalps. Judge Samuel Sewall witnessed “great shouting and trembling” when Harmon’s men returned to Boston brandishing their scalps on August 22, 1724.
Harmon is given a silver handled sword by Colonel Westbrook, and at his urging, is made Lieutenant Colonel by the Governor and later elected to the Massachusetts House. Speaking at the General Court in November, 1724, Lieutenant Governor Dummer proclaimed that Norridgewock succeeded in "such a destruction of the enemy as has not been known in any of the late wars, and (as I hope) in the entire dissipation of that tribe." In 1726-27 Harmon, Moulton, Bourne and others are also granted land for their service. Westbrook also profits from land as a speculator in the region further cleared of Native people by the decimation of Norridgewock.
Ben Franklin’s brother published, “The Rebels Reward,” a popular ballad, to commemorate what the Bostonians considered a great victory. 
Guidance for Teaching
In the next Deeper Dive section we read a View from the Boat of a settler who witnessed the arrival of indigenous people in Boston and the redemption of scalps for money by English scalp-bounty hunters.