Mary Rowlandson was born in England and taken to America as a child.1 Her father, John White, became a wealthy landowner in the Massachusetts Bay Colony, settling in Lancaster.1In 1656 she married the Rev. Joseph Rowlandson, Lancaster's first regular minister. 2 In February of 1676 during the King Phillip’s War, the Wampanoag Indian tribe charged into Lancaster. The tribe raided this area of Lancaster because the settlers were on their land. The Indians captured Rowlandson and her three children.2
1 RM, plc. "Mary Rowlandson." Hutchinson's Biography Database (2011): 1. History Reference Center. Web. 8 Feb. 2013.
2 "Rowlandson, Mary." Encyclopædia Britannica. Encyclopædia Britannica Online School Edition. Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc., 2013. Web. 8 Feb. 2013.
Life After Prison
Mary was brought to Mt. Wachusetts , which is an area of Massachusetts where she was redeemed by the brave John Hoar, a resident of Concord. Six years later in 1682 she published a narrative of her captivity which became America's first best seller.2 The name of the book was The Soveraignty & Goodness of God, Together with the Faithfulness of His Promises Displayed; Being a Narrative of the Captivity and Restauration of Mrs. Mary Rowlandson.1 At that time it was highly unusual for a woman to be a published author.2 In May 1676 Rowlandson was at last ransomed back to her husband for £20. Her two surviving children were returned sometime later.1 Mary passed away January 5, 1711.1
1"Rowlandson, Mary." Encyclopedia Britannica. Encyclopedia Britannica Online School Edition.Encyclopedia Britannica, Inc., 2013. Web. 8 Feb. 2013.
2“Who was Mary Rowlandson?” The Mary Rowlandson Storyhttp://www.maryrowlandson.com/index.html
What is Like to be Captured?
Mary Rowlandson had a tough time. The Indians attacked her house and set it on fire. Before being held hostage, she saw her brother-in-law die and her sister get shot. She was treated poorly too. She had no food, water, or shelter for 3 days. She served as the Indians servant while tending to a wounded child she had saved. Mary got little payments by making clothes and selling it to the tribe. Finally, she got let go off a ransom at 20 English pounds or about $332.
2 Lincoln, Charles H. 1913. Narratives of the Indian Wars. Barnes & Noble, Inc., New York, reprinted 1966.
About her Book
Mary Rowlandson wrote the book The Sovereignty & Goodness of God, Together with the Faithfulness of His Promises Displayed; Being a Narrative of the Captivity and Restoration of Mrs. Mary Rowlandson during her captivity. The vividly written tale quickly became a classic example not only of the captivity genre but of colonial literature generally. It ran through more than 30 editions over the years, and selections from it have been included in countless anthologies of American writing.1
1"Rowlandson, Mary." Encyclopædia Britannica. Encyclopædia Britannica Online School Edition.
Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc., 2013. Web. 8 Feb. 2013