Re: After captivity

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Posted by Victoria on January 24, 1999 at 09:33:18:

In Reply to: Re: Simon Girty & the Dark and Bloody Ground posted by Elaine on January 23, 1999 at 20:29:52:


Have you given much thought to the aftermath of captivity? It seems to me that so many released captives married others who had shared the same experiences. For some time in American history, it would almost seem as though former captives
: created a sub-culture. They were different. Much the way war veterans have often felt apart from those who "weren't there", the survivors of captivity seem to have formed their own peculiar bonding.

: Elaine

I think this was true. I think it made them a little different, and for a fairly rigid social system it would have made them seem like outsiders. It seems especially difficult for women who went through the experience. Look at the portrait of the woman captive in Roberts' "Northwest Passage." European society was very concerned with its notions of womanliness and these women became tainted by their experience in the eyes Euro-American society. You can also read that it was her fear of how she and her children would be treated that prevented Mary Jemison from returning.

The other thing I've thought about is the tendency of frontier families to marry up with other frontier families. That certainly happened to my mother's and father's families, long after a real frontier had vanished.


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