The Unredeemed Captive: a Family Story from Early America – John Demos

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The Unredeemed Captive: A Family Story from Early America – John Demos The Unredeemed captive is a narrative about the capture of Eunice Williams and her adaptation in to a completely different culture. The French, English and the Native Americans were three cultures that had many similarities as well as differences which lead them to have a peaceful yet a violent co-existence. The first interaction between the French-Native Americans and the English–Native American started out friendly and with a mutual satisfaction of what each culture brought to the table but the lack of willingness to understand each culture led to alliances and antagonistic behaviors. The narrative “the unredeemed captive” begins on February 29th 1704 in Deerfield Massachusetts with the “Deerfield raid” which was executed by the French and the Native Americans. This event leads to the Capture of the Williams family and about a 100 of their neighbors. The Deerfield raid was one of the largest raids to be executed and they also had the largest number of captives taken than any other raid. The Native Americans who participated in this raid spoke French and were converted Catholics. The prisoners were asked to march almost 300 miles to Canada but many died along the way, Mrs. Williams included. Among the Williams family captives was the six year old Eunice Williams. She had a Mohawk master who took her to his house at Caughnawag. He carried her on his back during the march and treated her with kindness despite their differences. Eunice was separated from her father and her two surviving brothers but she adapted to the Native American traditions very fast. The Native American master baptized her and gave Eunice Williams the name Marguerite Kanenstenhawi Arosen. Over time, Eunice forgot how to speak English and completely adapted to the Native American culture and traditions. Most of the

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