Good The Life Of Mary Jemison Essay Example

Type of paper: Essay

Topic: Women, Family, Marriage, Clan, Mother, Parents, Adoption, Tribe

Pages: 1

Words: 275

Published: 2021/01/03

On March 1758, Mary Jemison along with her family and some neighbors was abducted by a raiding party of six Indians and four Frenchmen. Mary was just 15 years old at that time. Once they reached the Indian camp, she was cleaned and dressed in Indian clothes. There, in a mourning ceremony for a deceased brother, she was adopted by two Squaws (women).
Her Indian sisters started teaching her their language, though whenever she was alone, she would try and practice prayers and other things she had learnt, in order to keep from forgetting her own language. She was given the Indian name of Dickewami, which translated to pretty girl or good things. Loneliness would often strike her when she remembered her own family. The place where they lived was near Ohio, at the mouth of the river Shenanjee. They changed the camping place to a new one called Wiishto. Here, a group of Delaware Indians joined them. She was soon married to one of them by the name of Sheninjee. Initially, the idea of living, married to one of them was appalling to Mary, but soon, the good nature, tenderness and generosity of Sheninjee, won her affections. He treated her with gentleness and she soon grew to love him. Her first child was born a little later but lived for s few days only. On the 4th year of her stay, a son was born and was named after her father – Thomas Jemison. She soon left for a trip with her brothers to a place called Genishau, where her Indian mother and her adopted sisters waited. Here, she and her sisters were forbidden from witnessing the torture and mutilation of two prisoners by their mother, though the other women in the camp attended the event. Their mother explained that the men of the tribe followed the customs of war and were happy to defend and provide for the women, so let the women stay at home, and let the men complete their customs of war on the prisoners.
The tribe she was married in, was the Seneca Indian. They follow the matrilineal structure of society, where women are given power and responsibility within the clan. The women of this tribe had high public status, ownership of houses and land and the methods of agriculture. They could start and stop wars. They had the responsibility of planting and harvesting, taking care of children , making clothes and utensils and managing their homes. The oldest woman of the tribe was called the clan mother and she had the power to nominate and remove chiefs, who were called “Sachem”. The clan mother had the right to lead a war party if necessary. Because of the power of the women, men also worked in harmony and cooperation with the women. A woman’s property before marriage remained hers, separate from the property of her husband. After marriage, a husband usually stayed at the longhouse of woman’s family. The children from the marriage inherited their mother’s clan and retained their social status through her clan. The clan ties are traced back through the mothers lineage. If a couple separated, the wife usually kept the children.
Mary adopted the Indian way of life, She was married a second time to another Indian named Hiokatoo, with whom she had two sons and four daughters. Though she was given the chance to repatriate, she chose to remain with her adopted family and follow the Indian customs. In November 1823, now eighty years old, agreed to share her life’s story with a local doctor, James Everett Seaver. She came walking four miles to meet the doctor. She came, dressed in typical Indian attire.

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"Good The Life Of Mary Jemison Essay Example," Free Essay Examples -, 03-Jan-2021. [Online]. Available: [Accessed: 09-Aug-2022].
Good The Life Of Mary Jemison Essay Example. Free Essay Examples - Published Jan 03, 2021. Accessed August 09, 2022.

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