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The White Indian: Mary Jemison in Two Worlds. The date was November 1823 when Mary was about 80 years old when she first met with Seaver to orally tell her story, which took over the course of three days.

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Laura Solomon History 2010G 9/20/09 The White Indian: Mary Jemison in Two Worlds For some strange reason after reading the editors introduction to the Narrative of Mrs. Mary Jemison, It reminded me of the beginning of the Titanic. I remember being a little girl watching one hundred year old Rose walk in to a salvage ship to tell her story, I thought it was so cool, having history come to life by having it told by someone who lived it. I didn't have grandparents going up, so I never got to experience sitting on a grandpa's lap telling me war story's or a grandma pitch my cheeks and talk about her old loves stories. So when I started reading the introduction I was hooked. Although it's hard to tell if what your hearing is really the truth, or if those who are getting the story told to are just interested for their own gain or to truly get the story out. In the Titanic the men who want to hear Rose's story are mainly interested in what happened to her blue diamond necklace, during the disaster. It's true that many people use others for their own gain but in this narrative I believe Seaver was truly interested, for the story reads not like fiction but Fact. ...read more.


She saw men being burned alive and other being scalped right in front of her. She passed a Shawnee town where she saw a number of heads, arms, legs and many other body's parts of white people who had just been burnt. While the remaining parts were hanging on a pole and Mary says, " the whole appearances afforded a spectacle so shocking, that, even to this day, my blood almost curdles in my veins when I think of them!" Though Mary was lucky for she was a girl and they didn't harm women or children like they did the males. For males they had them " run the gauntlet" where villagers would form two lines and the captives would walk though and try to make it to the other side while the villagers would throw things at them and test their man-hood. It goes to show there is not just one captivity experience. I can only imagine the fear and uncertainty that Mary felt after being taken from her family. Although she saw when she first arrived she was treated quite well for she was washed and dressed into Indian clothes. In town Seneca sisters were mourning with her, and then adopted her. Many times the practice of adoption happens to replace someone who is lost, like a killed boy in war or a child who's life was cut short by sickness. ...read more.


Rose and Mary are around the same age when they make these decisions that are so surprising given their promised stable life if they were to stay with their original family. I find it so incredible that after only couple of years Mary's Aunt and uncle come find her in hopes to take her back with them that Mary decides to stay. I could only imagine her aunt and uncles reaction to her decision. She was fifteen when she was taken so she got a good glimpse of what her life would be like if she were to leave with them, but the culture she is living now is were she belongs. Before this story I had so many false assumptions about Captivity and the Indian culture. I've learned that captives were put up for adoption, women weren't treated as slaves, and that all Indians weren't violent. I found it very interesting that there were just as many non-violent interactions between Whites and Indians then there were Violent. Though most of all I find it interesting how Mary continues to live a Seneca lifestyle through her habits of sitting on the floor rather than a bench, sleeping on skins without a bed stand and corresponding religion to the Seneca's. She truly was a White Indian. Its not that she was taken at a young age and doesn't know any better, Its safe to say that Mary is biologically one thing but culturally another. ...read more.

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