Thomas Commuck, a Narragansett Indian, was born January 18, 1804 at Charlestown, Rhode Island. His father died while he was a child. At the time of Commuck’s birth, the Narragansetts had, by and large, converted to Christianity and adopted English as their language. English was Commuck’s native language, and he only learned six words of the Narragansett tongue. In 1825 Commuck moved to Brothertown, New York. The remainder of his life was spent with the Brothertown Indians. In 1831 Commuck moved to Wisconsin along with other Brothertown people who were relocating there. In 1845 Commuck’s tunebook, Indian Melodies Go to person page >
Harmonizer: Thomas Hastings, Esq.
Hastings, Thomas, MUS. DOC., son of Dr. Seth Hastings, was born at Washington, Lichfield County, Connecticut, October 15, 1784. In 1786, his father moved to Clinton, Oneida Co., N. Y. There, amid rough frontier life, his opportunities for education were small; but at an early age he developed a taste for music, and began teaching it in 1806. Seeking a wider field, he went, in 1817, to Troy, then to Albany, and in 1823 to Utica, where he conducted a religious journal, in which he advocated his special views on church music. In 1832 he was called to New York to assume the charge of several Church Choirs, and there his last forty years were spent in great and increasing usefulness and repute. He died at New York, May 15, 1872. His aim was the… Go to person page >