By Dawn G. Marsh
On July 28, 1797, an aged Lenape lady stood earlier than the newly appointed almsman of Pennsylvania’s Chester County and added a short account of her existence. In a tragic irony, Hannah Freeman used to be constructing her residency—a declare that cleared the path for her removing to the poorhouse. eventually, even if, it intended the ultimate elimination from the ancestral land she had so tenaciously maintained. hence was once William Penn’s “peaceable state” preserved.
A Lenape one of the Quakers reconstructs Hannah Freeman’s historical past, touring from the times of her grandmothers sooner than eu payment to the start of the 19th century. the tale that emerges is one in every of endurance and resilience, as “Indian Hannah” negotiates lifestyles with the Quaker acquaintances who hire her, entrust their young children to her, hunt down her therapeutic abilities, and, while she is weakened through ailment and age, take care of her. And but those are a similar associates whose households have dispossessed hers. interesting in its personal correct, Hannah Freeman’s existence is additionally extraordinary for its specified view of a local American girl in a colonial neighborhood in the course of a time of dramatic transformation and upheaval. particularly it expands our knowing of colonial heritage and the local event that historical past usually renders silent.
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