Indian Biography (Vol. 1&2)

The Lives of the Distinguished Orators, Warriors, Statesmen, and Other Remarkable Characters among Native North Americans
e-artnow (Verlag)
  • 1. Auflage
  • |
  • erschienen am 29. August 2020
  • |
  • 523 Seiten
E-Book | ePUB mit Wasserzeichen-DRM | Systemvoraussetzungen
4064066399924 (EAN)
'Indian Biography' in 2 volumes is an historical and biographical account of people who have been distinguished among the North American natives as orators, warriors, statesmen, and other remarkable characters. This carefully crafted ebook is formatted for your eReader with a functional and detailed table of contents. Volume 1: The Indian tribes of Virginia at the date of the Jamestown settlement; their names, numbers and power The Powhatan confederacy... Conduct of Powhatan after Smith's departure for England, and causes of it Hostilities resumed Peace finally effected by the capture of Pocahontas Marriage of Pocahontas with John Rolfe... The family of Powhatan Sequel of the history of Pocahontas Her acts of kindness to the colonists at various times, and especially to Smith Her visit to England in 1616 Reception at Court... Sequel of the history of Opechancanough Preparations for War... Biography of other Virginian chieftains Totopotomoi, successor of Opechancanough Plot of the latter against the Hatteras colony Comment on the Carolinian Biography... Synopsis of the New England Indians at the date of the Plymouth settlement The Pokanoket confederacy The Wampanoag tribe... Volume 2: Notices of Indians who submitted to Massachusetts The Squaw Anecdotes of Chickatabot... Farther account of Master Weston's settlement, and the movements of the Indians against him Provocations from the English Magnanimous revenge of the Sachem... Summary account of the Five Nations Government Conquests Population Territory Their negotiations with the French, in 1684 History of the Five Nations continued to the time of Adario War between the Confederates and the French Adventures of Black-Kettle... Account of a council of the Confederates at Onondaga, in 1690 Speeches of Sadekanatie and other orators Anecdotes of Sadekanatie... Account of the Ottawas Hostility of the northern tribes to the English, after the conquest of Canada Adventures of Henry Supposed feelings of Pontiac towards the English His great project of combination...


Table of Contents

Conduct of Powhatan after Smith's departure for England, and causes of it-Hostilities resumed-Peace finally effected by the capture of Pocahontas-Manner of gaining this point-Marriage of Pocahontas with John Rolfe-Death and character of Powhatan-His person, manner of living, talents, influence. His method and means of warfare-The discipline of his warriors-The manner in which he availed himself of the English arms and science-Causes of his hostility towards the colonists-His dignity-Shrewdness-Independence-Courtesy-Liberality-Simplicity-Affection for his relatives-A review of various opinions entertained of him by various historians.

From the date of the expedition of which the particulars have just been given, to the time of Smith's departure for England, a few months subsequent, the English and the Powhatans treated and traded with each other upon tolerably amicable terms. A principal cause of this harmony is to be looked for in several fortunate incidents which went to impress the savage simplicity of one party with an inordinate conception of the superiority of the other.

Soon after the return of the expedition, several articles were stolen at Jamestown by one of the Chickahominy Indians who traded there; and a pistol among the rest. The thief fled, but two of his brothers, suspected of being accessories in the case, were apprehended. One of them was discharged, to go in search of the offender; and the other was imprisoned, with the understanding that unless the former should be successful in his search within twelve hours, he was to be hanged. But for his comfort during that interval, Smith furnished him with victuals, and charcoal for a fire. In the evening, the man who had been discharged, returned with the pistol; but the poor fellow in the dungeon was meanwhile very nearly smothered with the smoke of his coal. Those who came to release him took him up for dead. "The other most lamentably bewayled his death, and broke forth into such bitter agonies that the President [Smith] to quiet him, told him that if he would steale no more, he would make him [his brother] alive again; but he little thought he could be recovered. Yet we doing our best with aqua Vita and Vinegar, it pleased God to restore him againe to life, but so drunke and affrighted that he seemed lunaticke, the which as much tormented and grieued the other, as before to see him dead. Of this maladie, vpon promise of their good behavour, the President promised to recover him; and so caused him to be layd by a fire to sleepe, who in the morning having well slept had recovered his perfect senses, and then being dressed of his burning, and each a peece of copper given them, they went away so well contented that this was spread among all the savages for a miracle, that Captain Smith could make a man alive that was dead" [1]

Another of the incidents just alluded to is as follows. One of Powhatan's subjects, in his zeal to acquire knowledge and some other things, obtained possession of a large bag of gun-powder and the backe, as Smith calls it, of an armour. This ingenious artisan, on his return to Werowocomoco, determined to display these precious prizes to his wondering country-men, and at the same time to exhibit his own extraordinary skill in the management of them. He therefore began drying the powder upon the armour, as he had seen the soldiers do at Jamestown. Unluckily, he dried it too much. An explosion took, place, which blew up the proprietor, together with one or two of the spectators who were peeping over his shoulders. Several others were badly scorched, and all horribly frightened; and for some time after powder fell into a general disuse with the savages, much to the benefit of the English.

These and other similar accidents, we are told, so affrighted Powhatan and his people, that they came in from every quarter with proffers of peace. Several stolen articles were returned, the loss of which had never before been discovered; and whenever an Indian was convicted of theft, wherever he might be found, he was promptly sent in to Jamestown for his punishment. Not long afterwards we find that "so affraide was al those kings and the better sort of the people to displease vs [the colonists] that some of the baser sort that we haue extreamely hurt and punished for their villianies, would hire vs we should not tell it to their kings or countrymen, who would also punish them, and yet returne them to Iames-Toune to content the President for a testimony of their loues."

Still, the prowess and the name of Smith himself were the best preservatives of peace; and he had scarcely left the country for England when matters relapsed into their worst state. About thirty of the English were cut off by Powhatan's men at one time; and of a population of six hundred left in the colony at Smith's departure, there remained at the end of six months only sixty men, women and children. These were subsisted chiefly upon roots, herbs, acorns, walnuts, berries and now and then a little fish. The skins of horses, and even considerable quantities of starch, were used for food. Others went so far as to disinter and devour the body of an Indian who had been slain and buried. One man killed his wife, "powdered her," and had eaten a part of her before it was known. The poor wretch was hanged for his horrible deed of despair.

Peace was finally effected with Powhatan through the intervention, or rather by the mere medium of Pocahontas, in the following manner. Early in 1613, [1a] two ships arrived at Jamestown with supplies for the colony. These being insufficient, Captain Argall, who commanded one of them, was sent up the Potomac river to trade with the natives for corn. Here Argall formed a particular acquaintance with Japazaws, the chief sachem of the Potomacs or Patawomekes, and always a stanch friend of the English. He informed the captain, among other things, that Pocahontas was at this time in his territories, and not far distant, keeping herself in seclusion, and known only to a few trusty friends. What were the reasons which induced her thus to forsake her father's dominions for a foreigner's, does not appear. Stith supposes it was to withdraw herself from being a witness of the frequent butcheries of the English, whose folly and rashness, after Smith's departure, put it out of her power to save them. And very probably, as a later historian suggests, [1b] she had already incurred the displeasure of the emperor by these repeated and futile though highly honorable attempts.

But whatever her motives might be, Argall had no sooner received intelligence of her situation, than he resolved on obtaining possession of her person, as a means-which he had no doubt the colony would thank him for-of effecting a peace with Powhatan. Japazaws seems to have been a well-meaning and honest fellow in general; but the temptation of a large new copper kettle, which Argall held out before him as the promised recompense for his aid and abettance in the case-the consideration of the praiseworthy object proposed to be accomplished by the measure-and last though not least of all, the captain's pledge that Pocahontas should not be harmed while in his custody, were sufficient to overcome his scruples. The next thing in order was to induce the princess-as this amiable and talented Indian female has generally been styled to go on board Argall's boat. To that end, Japazaws, who had himself seen many of the English vessels before this, induced his wife to affect an extreme curiosity upon the subject, so intolerably importunate that he finally threatened to beat her. The good woman on the other hand actually accomplished a few tears. This happened in the presence of Pocahontas, and the scene was frequently repeated, until at last Japazaws, affecting to be subdued by the manifest affliction of his wife, reluctantly gave her permission to visit the vessel, provided that Pocahontas would have the politeness to go with her.

The princess, always complaisant, and unable to witness any longer the apparent distress of her kind friend and hostess, consented to go on board the ship. There they were civilly welcomed, and first entertained in the cabin. The captain then found an opportunity to decoy Pocahontas into the gun-room, on pretence of conferring there with Japazaws, but really because the kind-hearted Sachem, who had received ere this the brilliant wages of his sin, and began perhaps to relent, was unwilling to be known by the princess to have been concerned in the plot against her liberty. When Argall told her, in his presence, that she must go with him to the colony, and compound a peace tween her father and the English, she wept indeed in the bitterness of her soul; as for Japazaws and his wife, they absolutely howled with inconsolable and inconceivable affliction. But the princess recovered her composure on finding herself treated with kindness; and while she turned her face towards the English colony, (which she had not seen since Smith's departure) with something even like cheerfulness at the prospect of doing good, her distressed guardian and his pliant spouse with their copper kettle filled with toys, trudged merrily back to their own wigwam.

On Argall's arrival at Jamestown, a message was immediately despatched to Powhatan, "that his daughter Pocahontas he loued so dearly, he must ransom with our men, swords, peeces, tooles, &c., hee trecherously had stolen." [2] This was not so complimentary or soothing as might have been imagined, it must be allowed (-the courtesy of Smith was no longer in the colony-) and this perhaps was the reason why, much as the unwelcome news of his daughter's captivity is said to have troubled him, he sent no answer to the message...

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