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Thomas Pell (1608 - 1669) was a physician who was famous for buying the area known as Pelham, Westchester, New York, as well as land that now includes the eastern Bronxmarker and southern Westchester Countymarker. He founded the town of Westchester at the head of navigation on Westchester creekmarker in 1654.[107172] He is recorded as travelling from Fairfield, Englandmarker to North America to attempt to set up new colonies. He was the brother of the mathematician John Pell and uncle of Sir John Pell, first Lord of the Manor of Pelham. The Pell family lived in this area until the Revolutionary War and has remained prominent to the present, with family members including U.S. Ambassador Herbert Pell and U.S. Senator Claiborne Pell.

Records state that he bought this from Chief Wampage from the Siwanoy Indian Tribe that owned it on June 27, 1654. It has been indicated the alternative dates, November 11 or November 14 1654, are incorrect [107173]. It has been said that Pell "named his acreage Pelham in honor of his tutor Pelham Burton" [107174].

Pell was legally challenged by the Dutch courts who considered the "English were trespassing on Dutch territory" [107175]. This dispute was finally resolved by Pell in September 1664 when the British Navy, supported by a militia invasion force comprised largely of City Island colonists and led by Pell himself, entered the then New Amsterdam and forced the Dutch Governor of New Netherland Peter Stuyvesant to surrender.

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