What is the history of the village of Niantic? This land was originally occupied by Native Americans, specifically the Nehantic tribe. The history of this territory dates back to the 1600s. War and sickness were prevalent during these times. In order to survive the coming tribulation, eastern and western Nehantic tribes decided to ally themselves with other tribes; specifically, the Pequot and the Narragansett.
In the early 17th century, Dutch traders came upon the area and started to expand beyond the Hudson River. They visited these Native American tribes while they were here. They even set up a trading post near the area that is now known as Hartford. Their intent was merely to start trading with tribes around the river. Unfortunately for the Dutch people, the British people also claimed the same area as a part of their colonies. Instead of fighting the British, the Dutch voluntarily backed away. The Dutch and English people cooperated and signed a trade agreement with England in 1627, allowing them to do business with the Narragansett tribe, which were west of the river.
If only the village of Niantic history could end on that peaceful note! Unfortunately, things changed when Puritans arrived in Massachusetts and ignored earlier agreements. Soon enough, the English and the Dutch were dueling it out to gain control of fur trading. The Niantic and Pequot tribes attempted to trade with both sides but, eventually, the white rivalry influenced the behavior of the Native Americans. Before long, the Pequot favored the Dutch and the Mohegan tribe preferred England. The Western Nehantic backed the Pequot for a time. However, when the Pequot and Mohegan tribes had a falling out, the Nehantic tribe eventually found itself at war with the Pequot. From there, much of the Nehantic tribe was wiped out by the Pequot and the other tribes were eventually slaughtered by the English. Surviving tribes merged while colonists continued expansion.
The village of Niantic, CT history is complex and there is no easy truth to the story. However, you can read about this history in depth at such historical sites in the modern Niantic Village, such as the Thomas Lee House and the Smith Harris House.