A Strange Truth About Indian Captivity Narratives

It is a well known truism that truth is often stranger than fiction. This holds true in the literature of the west as well. Among the many interesting narratives and eye witness acounts of American frontier life are a number of accounts of Indian captivity. A few of these are pretty famous, like the story of Cynthia Ann Parker (and her son Quanah). But there are many others that are less well known, but no less interesting. One of the things that fascinates me about these narratives is how often the white captives became "indianized" (in spite of their often brutal treatment) and grieved when they were rescued and returned to civilization. Some never fully made the transition back into normal society. Here are a few titles in our catalog you might find interesting also.

captured

The Captured: a true story of abduction by Indians on the Texas frontier / Scott Zesch

tattoo

The Blue Tattoo: the life of Olive Oatman / Margot Mifflin

indians

Captured by the Indians: 15 first hand accounts, 1750-1870 / edited by Frederick Drimmer

blood

Frontier Blood: the saga of the Parker Family / Jo Ella Powell Exley

captive

Indian Captive: the story of Mary Jemison / written and illustrated by Lois Lenski

three

Three Years Among the Comanches: the narrative of Nelson Lee, the Texas ranger / Nelson Lee

unredeemed

The Unredeemed Captive: a family story from early America / John Demos