Wabanakiak | author archives

If you could only read a single primary source about Eastern Woodland natives -> this book is it. James Smith was captured by the Shawnees in 1755, taken to Fort Duquesne and witnessed the aftermath of Braddock’s Defeat.  Soon after he was adopted by a Mohawk (Kahnawake) family living in Huron lands along Lake Erie till 1759 when he escaped during a visit to Montreal.  During the Revolution Smith used the tactics he learned from the Indians to help kick the British from Western Pennsylvania.  Smith went on to explore western Kentucky and Tennessee and in the twilight of his life became a preacher.  He left this plainly written yet detailed and thoughtful account of his captivity and analysis of Indian tactics which is available on  the internet archive.  Smith never wavers in his esteem or respect for Indians, which is saying a lot considering the place and time. An_account_of_the_remarkable_occurrences


Here is a page from John Gyles captivity narrative describing the physical possesions of Maliseet men in the late 17th Century.  Gyles was captured at Ft Pemaquid in Maine During King Williams War in 1689.  He describes these primary possessions as : Gun, ammunition, canoe, spear, hatchet,  menodah (bag), crooked knife, looking glass (mirror), paint, pipe, tobacco, and a bowl and dice set for the Hub game.  This John Gyles captivity narrative is available oon Google book

Gyles, John. Memoirs of Odd Adventures, Strange Deliverances, etc. In the Captivity of John Gyles, Esq..


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