Pocahontas, who is she? Most know her as a Disney princess who sings “Colors of the Wind” and saves John Smith. However, few people know the whole story. Pocahontas had a childhood like any other Indian child in her tribe, but when the English came she had a major role building the relationship between the two groups, and she later learned the English traditions and married an English man.
Pocahontas’s first few years of life were like everyone else’s childhood. She was born in 1596 to Powhatan, the chief of the Pamunkey tribe (National Women’s History Museum).Her father named her Amonute with the private name of Matoaka (Stebbins). As the years passed she was given the Pocahontas meaning “playful one” (Stebbins). Powhatan had several other daughters but Pocahontas was his favorite (Biography.com).
By the age of thirteen Pocahontas had learned all of the women’s responsibilities (Stebbins). She learned how to find clean water, cook, how to build and maintain a fire (Stebbins). She also had to learn how to grow and farm food find food in the wilderness and how to build houses (Stebbins). Indian women had a lot of chores that they had to master!
In May of 1607, the English began to settle in the new world (NWHM), but Pocahontas did not begin to form a relationship with them until that winter (Stebbins). The first English man she met was Captain John Smith when she saved him from execution (NWHM). For the next year after the encounter, Pocahontas and other tribe members would frequently travel to Jamestown (NWHM). On each trip Pocahontas would deliver messages from her father and bring items to trade (NWHM). As a result of her friendliness she became the “symbol of peace” (Stebbins).
Everything was going smooth until the two groups grew hostile towards each other in 1608 (NWHM). The friendship between the English and Indians continued to decline so Powhatan decided to move his tribe further inland (Stebbins). A year later John Smith was seriously injured in a gun powder explosion causing him to return to England (NWHM). Pocahontas, however, received false information and believed that he had died (NWHM).
After Smith’s return to England, Pocahontas’s life returned back to normal. Neither the Indians nor the English communicated (Woolley 311). Since Pocahontas was not distracted by the English anymore, she met Kocoum, quickly fell in love, married and moved to the Potomac region (NWHM).
Everything was going smooth until 1613 when Pocahontas was captured during the Anglo-Powhatan...