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an honored, welcome guest; that chief in that region—was told, by the old Emperor was exceedingly those who had seen the leader of kind to him; that he was assured the kidnapping band, that Smith he would be liberated in four days; was not the man, he was treated that he was sumptuously feasted; with generous hospitality. So urthat the wives of Powhatan washed gently was he pressed to eat more his hands in the royal basin and and more of their rich and varied wiped them on the royal feathers! food, that he became suspicious. According to Captain John Smith Thought they wanted to fatten him he and the Emperor were, from the up so that he would be good eating very first, as chummy as possible, for them. and regaled each other by exchang- Opecancannough took Captain ing knowledge and experience. Po- Smith to his brother, Powhatan, cahontas is not mentioned at all.
who was then at Werowocomoco. It is not a case of omitting an After having been cordially greeted, incident; it is a case of contradict- and handsomely entertained, the ion. If Smith's narrative of 1608 valiant Captain was given an escort isn't a tissue of falsehoods there to Jamestown. was no occasion for Pocahontas to
Not only does Captain Smith exsave him from death.
press lively appreciation of the Some years previous to the land- manner in which Powhatan received ing of the Jamestown colony, a par- him, lavished attentions upon him, ty of white men had gone into the and sent him away laden with food; Pamunkey region—from a ship, not only is nothing whatever said necessarily—and had killed a chief of Pocahontas and the alleged narand carried off twenty odd Indians. row escape from death; not only Now, when Captain John Smith and does Smith positively assert that his his men rowed up the Chickahom- captors (even before their suspiciny, the Indians feared another ions that he was the kidnapper had raid. Because of this, they killed been removed) protected his life one of the men Smith left in the from the Indian who wanted to reboat; and captured Smith himself. venge the killing of his son; but the They treated him well, and he him- narrative of one of these original self states that the only attempt colonists (F. Studley), written in on his life was made by the father 1608 is equally inconsistent with the of one of the warriors whom he had alleged rescue of Smith by the Inshot in the swamp. The guards pre dian princess. Studley's narrative vented the grief-stricken vengeful mentions such incidents as that the old man from killing the Captain. preacher got very sick; and that As Smith was careful to relate this they stopped for water in the Caincident, how can any one believe nary Islands. He refers to Captain that he would have failed to picture Smith's venture on the Chickahomthe more dramatic scene alleged to iny, but says nothing of Pocahontas. have occurred in Powhatan's “pal- The story first appears, so far as ace?!
I can discover, in the narrative of As soon
as Opecancannough— Anas Todkill, which was written in
1612. It was Todkill, apparently, ently I seized him and bound his who invented the story that Captain arm fast to my hand in a garter, Smith was “saved” twice, on that with my pistol ready bent to be reone trip. He was saved the first venged on him; he advised me to time by exhibiting a mariner's com- fly, and seemed ignorant of what pass, supplemented by a lecture on was done. astronomy. How it was that Smith But as we went discoursing, I was and these Indians could so readily struck with an arrow on the right hold lengthy conversations, is no- thigh, but without harm; upon this where explained.
occasion I espied two Indians drawHaving delivered his hero from ing their bows, which I prevented in death, while he was in the power of discharging a French pistol. Opecancannough, the worthy Anas By that I had charged again, thought it necessary to save him three or four more did the like; for again, when he came into the power the first fell down and fled; at my of Powhatan. Why the compass discharge, they did the like. My had lost its talismanic virtue, we hinde (Indian) I made my barriare not told.
cade, who offered not to strike. By 1612, Anas Todkill knew Po- Twenty or thirty arrows were shot cahontas well as the old Emperor's at me but short. Three or four times favorite child ; •by 1612, the worthy I had discharged my pistol ere the Anas had learned the Indian cus- king of Pamaunck called Opeckantom of giving a prisoner to any kenough with 200 men, environed woman that wanted him. Through me, each drawing their bow; which out his narrative, Anas invents done they laid themselves upon the lengthy speeches—Smith to the In- ground, but without shooting. dians, and the Indians to Smith- My hinde treated betwixt me and which he pretends to have heard them of conditions of peace; he disand to have reproduced, word for covered me to be the Captain; my word, years after they were made. request was to retire to the boat;
Being of that inventive turn, Anas they demanded my arms, the rest may have created the Smith-Poca- they said were slain, only me they hontas fable.
they would reserve. At all events, the narrative of
The Indian importuned me not to Captain Smith, if true, absolutely shoot. In retiring being in the explodes the story. Read carefully midst of a low quagmire, and mindwhat he himself wrote at the time. ing them more than my steps, I I have put his words in modern stepped fast into the quagmire, and spelling but have not changed a syl- also the Indian in drawing me forth. lable.
Thus surprised, I resolved to try
their mercies; my arms I cast from “But within a quarter of an hour me, till which none durst approach I heard a loud cry, and a halloaing me. of Indians, but no warning peace. Being seized on me, they drew me Supposing them surprised, and that out and led me to the king. I prethe Indians had betrayed us, pres- sented him with a compass dial, de
scribing by my best means the use sea; this report they after found thereof; whereat he so amazedly divers Indians that confirmed. admired, as he suffered me to pro- The next day after my letter, ceed in a discourse of the roundness
came a savage to my lodging (still of the earth, the course of the sun, at Rasawrack), with his sword, to moon, stars and planets.
have slain me; but being by my With kind speeches and bread he guard intercepted, with a bow and requited me, conducting me where arrow he offered to have effected the canoe lay and John Robinson his purpose; the cause I knew not, slain, with twenty or thirty arrows till the King understanding thereof in him. Emry I saw not.
came and told me of a man dying, The Captain conducting me to his wounded with my pistol; he told me lodging, a quarter of venison and of another I had slain, yet they some ten pound of bread I had for must conceal that they had any hurt. supper; what I left was reserved This was the father of him I had for me, and sent with me to my slain, whose fury to prevent, the lodging
King presently conducted me to anEach morning three women pre- other kingdom, upon the top of the cented me with great platters of next northerly river, called Youghtfine bread, more venison than ten men could devour I had; my gown, The next day another king of that points and garters, my compass and nation, called Kekataugh, having my tablet they gave me again. received some kindness of me at the Though eight ordinarily guarded Fort, kindly invited me to feast at me, I wanted not what they could his house. The people from all devise to centent me; and still our places flocked to see me, each showlonger acquaintance increased our ing to content me. better affection.
From thence, this kind king conI desired he would send a messen- ducted me to a place called Tepager to Paspahegh (the district in hannock, a kingdom upon another which Jamestown was situated), river northward. The cause of this with a letter I would write, by which was, that the year before, a ship they should understand how kindly had been in the river of Pamaunke, they used me, and that I was well, who having been kindly entertained lest they should revenge my death. by Powhatan their Emperor, they This he granted and sent three men, returned thence and discovered the in such weather as in reason were river of Topahanocke; where being unpossible by any naked to be in- received with like kindness, yet he dured. Their cruel minds towards slew the king, and took off his peothe fort I had deserted, in describ- ple, and they supposed I were he. ing the ordinance and the mines But the people reported him to be a in the fields, and also the revenge great tall man that was the Captain, Captain Newport would take of and using me kindly, the next day them at his return. Their intent, I we departed. incited the fort, (as also of) the Arriving at Weramocomoco (on people of Ocanahonum and the back or about 5 January, 1608) their Emperor proudly laying upon a bed- between Smith and Powhatan, stead a foot high, upon ten or twelve about Europe and America, was mats, richly hung with great chains left out. of many pearls about his neck, and Note three important points: covered with a great covering of (1) While Smith relates that he rahaughcums. (Raccoon skins.) At showed Opecannough the compass, his head sat a woman, at his feet he as plainly lets it be seen that he another; on each side sitting upon is in no immediate danger of death, a mat upon the ground, were ranged is not tied to a tree, nor fettered in his chief men on each side of the any way. fire, ten in a rank, and behind them (2) Fearing that his friends at as many young women, each with a Jamestown
Jamestown might revenge themgreat chaine of white beads over selves for his supposed death, he their shoulders, their heads painted sends them a letter to let them know in red; and Powhatan with such a that he is being kindly treated. grave and majestical countenance, (3) Powhatan receives Captain as drew me into admiration to see Smith ceremoniously, in state, as such state in a naked savage.
kings have always received strangHe kindly welcomed me with good ers of distinction. In modern parwords, and great platters of sun- lance, we would say that King Opedry victuals, assuring me his cancannough “presented” Captain friendship, and my liberty within Smith at the court of the Emperor, four days. He much delighted in That's practically what took place. Opechan Conoughs relation of what At that time, Captain Smith had his I had described to him, and oft ex- pistols on his person, one discharge amined me upon the same. He de- of which would have emptied that sired me to forsake Paspahegh (i. e. “palace” in just about two seconds. James Town) and to live with him In fact, the first time Powhatan upon his river, a country called Ca- heard a pistol-shot, he ran howling pa Howasicke. He promised to give into the woods! me corn, venison, or what I wanted Instead of being bound with to feed us; hatchets and copper we cords, and then thrown to the should make him, and none should ground, with a rock for a pillow, disturb us.
Captain Smith was as unshackled This request I promised to per
as Powhatan; and was soon filling form; and thus, having with all the the inner man with “great platters kindness he could devise, sought to of sundrei victuals.” The head content me, he sent me home, with men present were the councillors, four men; one that usually carried not warriors. my gown and knapsack after me, How on earth can anyone believe two other loaded with bread, and in the Pocahontas story, and, at the one to accompany me.”
same time, believe Captain John
Smith ? I have not omitted anything
But there is cumulative evidence: which bears upon the mooted sub- In Smith's last reference to Poject. To save space, the dialogue cahontas in the narrative of 1608 he writes of her as “a child of ten girl; and he makes her happy—with years old,” who therefore was but glass beads, probably—as he would nine years old, at the time he first gratify any other maiden of the forappeared before Powhatan. He est, sent to him by the Powhatan. describes her (all the colonists did) If she had, before that, saved him as the brightest, prettiest of the sav- from an awful death, would he not age girls; but he gives not the faint- have written of her differently? est hint of her having saved his life, It is far more natural to surmise the year before. He gave her trin- that the little girl was grateful to kets, on this occasion, and released the handsome white chief who had some prisoners, in accordance with given her the first presents she had a message which Smith says had
ever received-gifts altogether difbeen taught her by Powhatan. Af- ferent from anything within her terwards, the little maiden did save previous knowledge—and that, on the Captain's life twice, once by this account, she admired and loved warning, and again, by concealing the brave Captain. Because of this, him.
and because of her innate tenderIf, before the girl was sent to ness of heart, she saved his life Jamestown to plead for the prison- twice, after her first visit to Jamesers, she had risked her life to save town. Captain Smith's, would not Powha
Read what Captain Smith wrote, tan, or Pocahontas, or Smith him- in 1608, and draw your own conclusself, have made some allusion to the ions: fact? Would not the petition of the old Emperor and his daughter have "Powhatan understanding we debeen made upon that ground? tained certain savages, sent (i. e. in
The plea was based upon the May, 1608) his daughter, a child of Powhatan's kindness in sending his ten years old; which, not only for favorite child to visit Smith. And feature, countenance, and proporSmith states that he granted the re- tion, much exceeded any of the rest lease of the prisoners, “in regard of his people; but for wit, and spirit, for her father's kindness in sending the only Nonpariel of his country. her."
This he sent by his most trusty mesThe prisoners were fed, and were senger, called Rawhunt, as much exgiven “their bows, arrows, or what ceeding in deformity of person; but else they had, and then sent pack- of a subtle will and crafty undering."
standing. "Pocahontas also we requited He, with a long circumstance, told with such trifles as contented her." me, how well Powhatan loved and Not a word from either Captain respected me; and in that I should Smith or Pocahontas about her
about her not doubt any way of his kindness, enormous service to him the year be- he had sent his child, which he most fore! Not a word about the unpay- esteemed, to see me; a deer and able debt that Smith owed her! He bread besides, for a present; desirspeaks of her as he would of any ing me that the boy (Thomas Salother intellingent, beautiful little vage) might come again, which he