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New Website Explains Historical Importance of Moswetuset Hummock

The name Massachusetts comes from a small, wooded hillock on Quincy Bay known as Moswetuset Hummock, a Native American word meaning "shaped like an arrowhead."
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The term Massachusetts comes from the Moswetuset part of Moswetuset Hummock, which is a small, wooded hillock on Quincy Bay.

But what’s the significance of the hummock? A group of history students at Eastern Nazarene College (ENC) has created a website explaining it.

ENC is located in Quincy, Massachusetts, the same town that was once home to the Massachusett tribe whose territory went from the Blue Hills to Quincy Bay.

“The thickly-wooded hill was the summer seat of the tribe’s Sachem Chickatabot… It was here that Chickatabot met with Myles Standish of the Plymouth Colony in 1621 as the colonists began their early trade with the Indians,” states the site’s homepage.

The site includes photos and videos as well as historic maps and prints of the area. The students point out on the website that Moswetuset means “shaped like an arrowhead,” but has also been translated to mean “site of the great house.”

The students who created the site did so as part of a Critical Readings in History class taught by history professor Randall Stephens.

“The kids did a great job collecting valuable materials on Moswetuset Hummock,” said Stephens, who is currently teaching American Studies courses in Norway on a Fulbright Fellowship. “They also excelled with the history lessons and descriptions of the pages. This new website will really help fill out what little people know of this treasured historic place.”

View the student’s website here.