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Home: Surnames: Pocahontas Family Genealogy Forum

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Re: Pocahontas Marriage
Posted by: Arthur Mitchell (ID *****0444) Date: June 11, 2012 at 19:32:09
In Reply to: Pocahontas Marriage by Bernard Bland, Jr. of 1081

Matoaka (Pocahontas, Rebecca) was living at Passapatanzy village with the Patawomeck (Potomac), a tribe within the Powhatan confederacy, in present day Stafford Co., Virginia, at the time of her kidnapping by the English in 1613.
A book by Dr. Linwood Custalow and Angela Daniel, The True Story of Pocahontas (2007), outlines the true (most likely) story of Pocahontas, much of it based on Mattaponi oral tradition. In 1610, about three years before her kidnapping and transfer to Jamestown, she married Kocoum and went to live among the Patawomeck. Kokoum may have been a younger half-brother (?) of Patawomeck Chief Japasaw, who was the granduncle (possibly?) of Matoaka. They had at least one child, including Ka-Okee, while living with the Patawomeck. This however cannot be proven; it is oral tradition, particularly among the Mattaponi, but also among groups of descendants.
The fate of Kokoum is unknown, but it is believed he was killed in battle with the Susquehannas (most likely) or by the English.
In April 1613, English settlers at Jamestown, led by Capt. Samuel Argall, abducted Matoaka. She was a valuable negotiation hostage for the English. She was seized in order to be exchanged for English prisoners and weapons held by her father Chief Wahunsenaca (Wahunsonacock, aka “Powhatan”). Although Wahunsenaca released his English prisoners as per agreement, Matoaka was not released by the English, and she later married John Rolfe.
During her time held hostage by the English, again according to Mattaponi oral tradition, she was repeatedly raped, and the child she bore may not have been John Rolfe’s. Again, an appeasement or power play resulted in the marriage to Rolfe and her presentation at the court of James I as a "princess". She died in England and never returned to Virginia.
Ka-Okee, child of Matoaka and Kokoum, was orphaned and raised by the Patawomecks.
It is believed that Ka-Okee married an Englishman with the surname Pettus (Theodore? Thomas?) who was a relative of Rolfe. Their daughter Christian Pettus married John Martin, and their daughters included Christian and Rebecca Martin. There are many families in Stafford Co, Virginia, who claim ancestry from Ka-Okee, including my own (via Rev. John Waugh). History was written to serve personal and political aims, and it is good to keep an open mind for we will never know the true story of poor Pocahontas.
The Patawomeck (Potomac) tribal historian, Bob Deyo, has more details, and I am trying to track down the origin or some of these marriages as most of the historical (birth, death, etc) records for Stafford County were destroyed by fire when the courthouse was burned during the Civil War.

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