Princess Pocahontas [ pɒkə ˌ hɒntəs ], also Matoaka ( " the playful ", " the one that all upsets "; * around 1595 in Virginia; † March 21, 1617 in Gravesend, southeast of London) was a mediator between the tribes of the Virginia Algonquian and the English colonists.


Pocahontas was the daughter of the Indian chief Powhatan sachem and one of his wives was born and called Amonute and Matoaka. Pocahontas was only her nickname. She is described as one of the favorite daughter of her father.

Powhatan married according to tradition, many women, each of which he only bore a child and then was sent away, and material support from him until she found a husband.

According to the report of Captain John Smith Pocahontas is said to have these saved through personal intervention of death, by protecting them from him throwing himself, as Pocahontas ' father wanted to kill him. In an animated film of Walt Disney Studios, and in the U.S. feature film " The New World" it is imputed to a love affair with Smith. In fact, there has never been this romance.

Pocahontas had as one of the favorite daughters of the chief influences on these. While he and the social group of warriors initially refused to accept the presence of the White, Pocahontas was of the opinion that a peaceful co-existence and exchange of cultures should be possible. They also helped the Europeans in America to improve their nutrition situation by teaching them what plants were edible. They also brought John Smith the language of their tribe at.

1613 attracted the Englishman at Stafford on a ship. There she was first detained as a hostage. During the time of her captivity she was taught by Christian Alexander Whitaker, she converted to Christianity and was baptized Rebecca. Historians are unclear as to whether the baptism was voluntary or erzwungermaßen. The name Rebecca has the biblical Rebecca, " the mother of two nations " by their sons Jacob and Esau out. So even Pocahontas was partially seen by contemporaries. 1614 she married the Virginia planter John Rolfe. 1615 was her son, Thomas Rolfe, born. As an ambassador of her royal father she came to the English court. There Pocahontas 1616 was the only one from the British royal family recognized " Indian Princess " and ambassador of her " royal " father Powhatan received at court. Due to her grace and her awakened mind she was very popular among the nobles, yet the court Rolfes marriage disapproved of Pocahontas, as this as opposed to her was not of royal blood. Pocahontas, now known as Rebecca Rolfe, died shortly after commencement of the journey back to Virginia, in Gravesend ( in the northwest of the county of Kent). The cause of her early death, pneumonia, tuberculosis, typhus or smallpox are called depending on the source. From her time at the court an engraving is obtained, which shows in the former court dress.

The cupola of the Capitol in Washington is decorated with a mural of the Baptism of the American Ureinwohnerin.


Their son Thomas Rolfe Pocahontas had numerous descendants, which members of the white upper class were mostly. Many of the " first families of Virginia " (FFV ) as the wealthy and prominent families call there, cause today back to Pocahontas and Rolfe.

Among the persons who are descended from her Edith Bolling Galt Wilson belonging, wife of Woodrow Wilson, attorney and Brigardegeneral George Wythe Randolph, Admiral Richard Byrd, Virginia Governor Harry F. Byrd, fashion designer Pauline de Rothschild; former First Lady Nancy Reagan, actor Glenn Strange and mathematician Percival Lowell.

It is related through the marriage of her great-great- granddaughter Jane Bolling with Richard Randolph with the Randolph family, an influential upper class family in the United States.

George W. Bush is a relative of Pocahontas.


Place names

Many places in the U.S. are named after Pocahontas. These include, among others:

  • Pocahontas, Virginia
  • Pocahontas County ( West Virginia)
  • Matoaca, Virginia
  • Matoaka, West Virginia
  • Pocahontas, Iowa
  • Pocahontas County ( Iowa)
  • Pocahontas (Arkansas )
  • Pocahontas, Illinois
  • Pocahontas, Mississippi
  • Pocahontas, Alberta
  • The Pocahontas State Park in Chesterfield, Virginia

Other names

Pocahontas was also namesake for one of the richest coal reserves in West Virginia. From 1930 to 1960 one of the luxury trains of Norfolk and Western Railway 's Pocahontas was called. Four ships of the United States Navy have been named USS Pocahontas and one USS Princess Matoika. This posthumous naming was controversial as Pocahontas pacifist is life given essence.