Research Paper: John Smith Founding the Virginia

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[. . .] Other critics who include historian Milton (2001) have mentioned that Smith's earlier writings could have been exaggerated and far from the truth citing the issue on Smith writing a letter to Queen Anne for her to treat the daughter of Powhatan known Pocahontas with dignity, critics note that the time gap before Smith published this letter raises the possibility that Smith could have just been trying to improve the image of Pocahontas.

Another notable critic of John Smith was the Harvard historian Henry Adams who pointed out that Smith account of establishing Virginia as colony and thereafter isn't consistent with his personal bibliography.

Indian and the English

Another topic of interest when talking about John Smith in relation to the colony of Virginia is the Indians and the English. The English who were the colonialist including John Smith arrived in their new territory, which was bordering with the Indians neighbors. Initial they had good relationship with trade nourishing between the two. But by the year 1608, the relationship had gone sour with Indians blaming the English for attacking them, setting their houses on blaze and then destroying their farms. What resulted was a hostile relation with trade between them being halted and food supply to the English men was also cut.

By the year 1610, the relationship between the two sides had gotten worse, with the new colonial governor Mr. Gates who was mandated to make the Indians his subject and convert them to Christians but instead he ended up slaughtering them. This led to the war between Indians and English that was later to be known as the first Anglo-Powhatan war resulting to the capture of the Chiefs daughter Pocahontas.

Things took a twist when John Rolfe married Pocahontas citing their marriage a source of peace to exist between the two warring groups. But after Powhatan's death war started again but this time the Indians were being led by Powhatan successor and son Opechancanough who was angered by the murder of his advisor by a settler (Kupperman, 2000).


Many studies, researches and even historians have devoted their work to explore more about John Smith who was also an explorer and author besides being a soldier, and his relation to the establishment of the first permanent English colony at Jamestown North of America. Different interpretations or accounts have been given pertaining John Smith as the founder of Virginia colony with some noting that indeed he was while others arguing that he was just one of the leaders among the many colonist who established Virginia Colony under a joint stock company called the Virginia Company and that his own writings or accounts of his life tend to give him all the credit for a groups work.

Where there have been a notable difference was on the issue of Pocahontas and the letter to Queen Anne which many view as an exaggeration as it is not consistent with the time that the purported letter is said to have been written, another issue of disagreement arising from the sources that the research used is the actual role played by Smith in founding Virginia colony. But on a positive note all the studies and relevant researches seem to be in agreement that indeed John Smith could be credited with solving the food problem that was killing settlers in the region. All in all of notable help among the sources was the studies conducted by Benjamin, (2008).


Barbour.P. The Jamestown Voyages under the First Charter, 1606-1609, Publications of the Hakluyt Society, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge 1969, p.2, 136-137

Benjamin. W Savage Kingdom, the True Story of Jamestown, 1607, and the Settlement of America, Perennial Edition Published, 2008, p 34-87

Hoobler, D., & Hoobler, T., Captain John Smith: Jamestown and the Birth of the American Dream: Hoboken, N.J.: John Wiley & Sons, 2006.p 56, 102-189

Kupperman, K., Indians & English: Facing Off in Early America. Cornell University Press: Ithaca: 2000, p 297

Lemay, J. Did Pocahontas Save Captain John Smith? Athens, Georgia: University of Georgia Press, 1992, p. 25.

Milton. G., Big… [END OF PREVIEW]

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APA Format

John Smith Founding the Virginia.  (2010, November 23).  Retrieved July 18, 2019, from

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"John Smith Founding the Virginia."  23 November 2010.  Web.  18 July 2019. <>.

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"John Smith Founding the Virginia."  November 23, 2010.  Accessed July 18, 2019.