The Montaukett Indian Nation -The Official Representation for Montaukett Descendants
From before the historic Sachem Wyandanch to the present-day Sachem Robert P. Pharaoh, the Montaukett Indian Nation supported by our traditional lineal leadership has endured to survive European incursion, disease, war, subjugation, domestication, cultural decimation, racial discrimination, territory confiscation and judicial extermination.
We are still here, healing the scars, preserving our traditions, our honor and our dignity, determined on our own terms to regain what was lost for the sake of our children and grandchildren – OUR NATION!
103 years ago, a New York State Judge declared the Montaukett Indian Nation as “extinct.” This judicial genocide stood for over a century. Four years ago, Chief Robert Wyandance Pharaoh declared that he would redouble the effort to restore the rights of the Montaukett as an historical New York State Indian Nation. On June 13 2013, the New York State Assembly passed the 2013 Montaukett Act. On June 18 2013, the New York Senate passed the 2013 Montaukett act.
Governor Cuomo vetoed this bill – not because it was unjustified or deficient – but because he recognized that New York State could not fairly evaluate the Montaukett using the current federal criteria. The state does not have the expertise nor does it have the budgetary flexibility to take on this complex and convoluted procedure. Had New York State attempted to apply federal guidelines, this could have led to unpredictable delays, legal challenges, etc. – none of which would be desirable outcomes from the Montaukett point of view. Everyone knows that there is a huge national controversy concerning the existing federal criteria. Many national Native American Indian organizations are opposing the BIA rules and these rules are very much in flux. In any case, Governor Cuomo has decided to direct the NYS Secretary of State to evaluate the case for Montaukett recognition. This is an acceptable alternative, which Chief Pharaoh, Senator LaValle and Assemblyman Thiele are all comfortable with. This outcome does not in any way diminish the incredible effort that the two New York politicians put in on our behalf and they have assured the Chief that they will continue to support Montaukett NY State recognition. These two heroes of the Montaukett serve as an example of how in this politically divisive climate, elected officials can rise above partisanship to recognize and do the right thing. Senator LaValle and Assemblyman Thiele – from the entire Montaukett Indian Nation, please accept our love and a big AHO!
Chief Pharaoh wants to personally thank the team that worked so hard to re-organize the nation and make this day a reality. He will be eternally grateful to all the Montaukett who stuck by him through thick and thin. Without your unfailing unity and support, The chief would be dealing with a hopelessly divided people and Montaukett recognition would remain the distant dream it has been for as long as anyone can remember.
Finally, the Chief wants to remind everyone that there are still hurdles to overcome. We are still 10 yards from the goal line, and all he asks is that all Montaukett remain loyal and stick with him. He is our quarterback and he is about to throw the touchdown pass.