Sir William Johnson, George Johnson's famous father

Handsome Sir William
William Johnson came to the Mohawk Valley around 1738 to act as an agent for his uncle, Peter Warren. His uncle directed the ambitious young man, newly arrived from Ireland, to establish a settlement there, to be known as Warrensburgh. Young William Johnson and 12 Irish Protestant families  started clearing land for farming.
Johnson's uncle wanted him also to involve himself in trading with Six Nations. He relocated  from the south side of the river to the north, where he established a small farm, store, and a sawmill and began trading in furs. He associated closely with the Mohawk people in the valley, the easternmost nation of the Six Nations of the Iroquois League. He studied the languages of the confederacy and sometimes wore Mohawk clothing. 

Johnson's Mohawk friends and neighbours saw in the tall Irishman someone who could advocate their interests with the British. They adopted him as a civil chief and gave him the name Warraghiyagey, meaning "Man who undertakes great things." In time he became British Superintendent of the North American colonies and a successful military leader. He believed that with good will, good communication, and good faith, the native peoples of North America and the European settlers could flourish side by side.

Johnson also had a great scientific curiosity. Like Ben Franklin, he conducted experiments with electricity, although largely for the amusement of guests at parties at Johnson Hall particularly the ladies.  A small book that he published on his experiments is in the John Carter Brown library.

All about George

This website is about George Johnson, part Mohawk, part white, and for a brief time, barely in his teens, a Mohawk warrior in the American War of Independence.