Three Wampanoag Indians are Hanged for the Murder of John Sassamon
On the testimony of a Native American witness, Plymouth Colony arrested three Wampanoags, including one of Metacom's councilors.
A jury among whom were some Indian members convicted them of Sassamon's murder; they were hanged on June 8, 1675, at Plymouth. Some Wampanoag believed that both the trial and the court's sentence were an insult to Indian sovereignty. In response, on June 20, a band of Pokanoket, possibly without Philip's approval, assaulted several isolated homesteads in the small Plymouth colony settlement of Swansea. Laying siege to the town, they destroyed it five days later and killed several settlers and others coming to help the settlers.
Colonist' hunger for land and their heavy-handed treatment of Natives led to one of the most disastrous wars in American history. The mysterious murder of John Sassamon, a Native liaison between the two groups, resulted in a complete breakdown in relations.