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Down a dirt road in the woods of West Tisbury near Indian Hill, is Christiantown.
Christiantown was established in 1659 by Wampanoag sachem Takemmy as a home for Native American converts to Christianity.
A plaque on the above boulder commemorates “the services of Governor Thomas Mayhew and his descended missionaries who here labored among the native Indians.”
By 1600 there were two or three congregations of Native Americans on the Island.
The Christiantown Meeting House, or chapel was built in 1829. There is a tiny altar and six pews inside… nearby is an old graveyard. This is a wonderful place for hiking or a walk in the woods.
The Wampanoag tribe now owns the memorial, the chapel and the burial ground containing graves of early converts.
Christiantown is off the beaten track but worth the effort to find.
Two of these pictures are NOT on the Vineyard… can you find them ?
CLICK HERE for ‘Through Jersey Eyes’ for more of my photos.
I did it. Like many others, I brought sand home from the Vineyard. It was wrong. What if everyone who visited the Vineyard did the same thing. How could I have done such a thing to the place I love so much. Shells and stones are one thing… you’re almost required to collect those. But how many bags full of sand can an island stand to lose before it starts to make a difference. Hundreds, thousands, millions… sand isn’t infinite, an island only has just so much of it. I was wracked with guilt. My bag of sand taunted me… I couldn’t look at it without feeling like a thief. Why did I think I needed it in the first place… did I need to touch it to feel a physical connection to MV!
I had stolen the sand in the early Spring and it wasn’t long after I got it home that I knew what I had to do. I had to take it back !!!! And so in the middle of winter while my husband and I were on MV I did just that. We drove out to the scene of the crime. I trudged through the sand to exact spot where I’d pilfered it from and emptied the bag of sand back to its rightful place.
A few years ago my daughter Deb gave me this charm from CB Stark jewelers in Vineyard Haven. This vial of sand is guaranteed Vineyard sand and in my opinion it is the only way to bring sand home from the Vineyard.