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Chief Joseph Brant
[Chief Joseph Brant]
Detail of portrait by George Romney, 4 April 1776, 39" x 50". National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa. Cat. 1957: no. 8005.
1742 - November 2, 1807
The Mohawk Thayendanegea, also known as Joseph Brant, served as Principal Chief of the Six Nations Indians, a Christian missionary of the Anglican church, and a British military officer during the U.S.A. War of Independence.
Brant was born in 1742 near what is now Akron, Ohio and given the Mohawk name of Thayendanegea, meaning "he places two bets." There are conflicting reports on whether he inherited the status of Mohawk Chief from his father, or was appointed to a ceremonial position from which he was removed in 1805 by the other chiefs of the Six Nations.
A student of Latin and Greek, he helped translate Mark’s Gospel into Mohawk. With the help of the Iroquois, he fought for the British against the American colonists. After the war he lead his people to what is now Ontario, Canada. Joseph Brant died in Burlington, Upper Canada on November 2, 1807.
The story of his rescuing Captain John McKinstry, a member of Hudson Lodge No.13 of New York—or other Continental soldiers—may be apocryphal.
Initiated: 1776
Hiram’s Cliftonian Lodge No. 47
Raised: April 26, 1776
Lodge No 417 at the Falcons, Leicester Fields, London
Founding Master: 1798
Brantford Lodge No. 31 - Affiliated: Barton Lodge, now No. 6, Hamilton, Ontario

A Shared Spirit: Freemasonry and the Native American Tradition. Masonic Service Association of North America Maryland: 2001. msana@ix.netcom.com


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