Sunday, September 7, 2008

Mary Draper Ingles

From The Examiner:
"A house in Radford is yielding a trove of historic documents related to the family of Appalachian heroine Mary Draper Ingles - a gutsy pioneer who in 1755 trekked through 800 miles of wilderness to escape her Indian captors.

A Radford University archivist and a graduate student are cataloging and indexing the documents, collected over generations of Ingles' family.

"There are rooms full of boxes," said archivist Kerri Huff, who is working with student Julie Alexander to index the material in La Riviere, the Radford home where Ingles' direct descendants lived until recently.

Ingles and her family were living in Draper's Meadow, in Montgomery County, in July 1755 when she was captured by a Shawnee raiding party and taken to Ohio. After escaping, she made her way through forests, across rivers and up two sheer cliff walls -- surviving mostly on nuts, berries and roots - to return home. She showed up at a nearby settlement one November day naked and starving, her hair nearly white. She was 23.

The first known white woman to enter what are now Ohio, Kentucky and Indiana, Ingles' six-week journey home from captivity has been turned into a novel, "Follow the River," a movie of the same name starring Sheryl Lee, and an outdoor play, "The Long Way Home" that was staged in Radford for nearly three decades."

Web Links:
Mary Draper Ingles - Notable Women Ancestors
Mary Draper Ingles - Adventures in West Virginia
Mary Draper Ingles - Wiki

Further Reading:
"Shawnee Captive: The Story of Mary Draper Ingles" by Mary R Furbee


Anonymous said...

My ancestor, Heinrich Adam Harman is the one who found her in the cornfield!

Unknown said...

This book was the most moving and inspirational book I've ever read in my life! I will never forget her story and I've told a many of my friends about the incredible woman! It's a must read!!!