Trip Stop: 

Edgartown was first settled by Europeans in 1642 for the purpose of converting the Wampanoag Indians on the island to Christianity. Fortunately, unlike many examples of disastrous cultural clashes in the history of European settlements in North America, the relationship between the English settlers, under the leadership of the Reverend Thomas Mayhew, Jr., and the Wampanoags of Martha’s Vineyard was a peaceful one, characterized by mutual respect. In the 1800s, Edgartowns “Great Harbor” helped to make it one of the most important whaling ports on the East Coast. Its numerous stately “Captain’s Houses” are reminders of that past period in its history.