The Legend of Cushetunk: The Nathan Skinner Manuscript and the Early History of Cochecton


Cushetunk was the Indian name given to the Upper Delaware River valley which stretches for about five miles in each direction from the present town of Cochecton, New York. The Nathan Skinner Manuscript is a detailed source of genealogical, historical, and anecdotal information about the pioneer and Revolutionary War days from 1754 to 1783 in Cochecton/Cushetunk. In 1850, James Eldridge Quinlan, a junior editor for The Republican Watchman in Monticello, New York, began writing a series of columns on the history of the Cochecton region, using for his main resource the memory and written lore of seventy-three-year-old Nathan Skinner. Skinner also owned a collection of early land deeds, passed down to him from his father. In 1873, Quinlan wrote his History of Sullivan County, using copies of the manuscript and Skinner’s deeds. Subsequent histories have quoted largely from the Nathan Skinner Manuscript, but this is the first time it has been arranged in chronological order and updated with contemporary factual materials to support, challenge, and enhance it. The editors utilized the archives of Pennsylvania and New York, the published papers of Sir William Johnson, George Clinton, and the Susquehannah Company, the unpublished Draper and Haldimand Manuscripts and many others. A map of Cochecton/Cushetunk and a full-name index add to the value of this work.

Barbara J. Sivertsen and Barbara L. Covey

(1993), 2011, 5½x8½, paper, index, 110 pp.

ISBN: 9781556137877