Momoweta was a 17th-century Sachem of the Corchaug of the North Fork of Eastern Long Island


January 1659

As Montaukett Sachem Wyandanch‘s influence grew, proprietors from all over Long Island sought him out to bolster their land claims.

The Southold magistrates, led by Barnabas Horton, met with Wyandanch, Cockenoe, and the Corchaug Indians in January 1659 to clear up some questions about who had the right to sell the land on the North Fork of eastern Long Island (Pelletreau 1882:9). Unfortunately, we have no record of the specific issues involved in the dispute, but later documents indicate that Plum Island was one of the areas in contention.

The Southold settlers on the north fork of Long Island English raised some questions about the property on Plum Island, which had been purchased by Governor Eaton from two Corchaug sachems, Momoweta and Paummis, in 1648. Southold officials, William Wells and Richard Woodhall bought the island from Eaton for the use of the town, but they never established a settlement there. Later, John Youngs bought the land, but he never occupied it either1.

The Corchaug, acting on their traditional view of ownership, apparently reasserted their control over the island by default. The Southold men called upon Wyandanch to resolve this matter and other questions about the rest of the North Fork as well.2


  1. DSBD, 1:15[]
  2. John Strong, Lecture titled ‘Wyandanch Sachem of the Montauks,’ 1998[]