Pocahontas, an Indian Princess was able to establish a remarkable and significant relationship with the English settlers of Jamestown. It was a relationship that would help shape the course of American history. She brought cooperation between her people and the English which allowed the successful founding of the Virginia Colony and lead ultimately to the birth of a new nation. Many people have a false image of Pocahontas because of the way she was portrayed in the Walt Disney film, but in actuality, she was very much different. Without Pocahontas" help, the Virginia Colony would not have survived.
The daughter of the powerful chief, Powhatan, of the Algonquian Indians, Pocahontas, was born around 1595. She was born to one of Powhatan's many wives most likely in Werawocomoco (chief's town). Her true name was Matoaka, which was only used within her tribe because Native Americans believed harm would come to a person if any outsiders knew their tribal name (Sahlman, 1). So, she was better known as Pocahontas, "Little Wanton", which means playful, frolicsome little girl (Morenus 1).
On April 26, 1607, the original colonists arrived in Virginia, and on May 13, 1607 the colonists settled in Jamestown (Lemay, XIV). Pocahontas soon developed an affection for the settlers and brought them food often. In early December, 1607, Smith and seven other colonists, among them, John Robinson, Geroge Cassen, and Thomas Emry, decided to venture into the Chickahominy River country to obtain corn from the inhabitants (Woodward, 64). Cassen was captured, "tied to a tree and brutally mutilated, his fingers, hands and legs hacked off with the Powhatans" torture weapons thrown into a nearby fire, the members were yet burning when Cassen, still alive, was disemboweled, and his remains were burned with the tree (Woodward, 65). Robinson and Emry had also been killed by the Indians, and Smith, being captain, was to be spared the fate of his fellow colonists (Woodward 65).