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Blood on The River
Transcript of Blood on The River
They travel down an open bay that leads them to their land, which is a long sand covered shoreline surrounded by tall green trees. Unlike the Caribbean Islands, here in James Town, Virginia it is quiet and desolated. There are no natives, savages, or villages in sight. Samuel Collier, the protagonist, describes this new strange land as free.
Setting Passage 1
The setting of Blood on the River is in warm fall in James Town, Virginia. Three ships filled with gentlemen, servants, and sailors have just arrived in warm fall in North America.
“It’s a place where the river is deep close to shore so it will be easy to moor our ships to trees. It’s got fresh water from the river, rabbits, squirrels, birds, mussels, oysters, fish, crabs, strawberries, and mulberries. It’s a safe from the natives because there are none living nearby. We’ll also be safe from the Spanish because it’s on a peninsula and we’ll be able to see any approaching Spanish ships for miles down the river. They’ve named the river the James, in honor of King James of England, and our settlement will be called James Town. The council votes and deletes Master Wingfield as our first President.”
Setting Passage 3
“The trees are so tall I feel as if I am in a cathedral. I breathe in the rich smell of damp earth the leaves are a bright early spring green, and sprinkled along the ground are tiny flowers of white, yellow, and violet. Butterflies and dragonflies add to the riot of color. I am either in a cathedral or in paradise, I think.” (Page 68-69)
Blood on the River
Blood on The River
Map of Jamestown, VA
By: Katie Define & Ashlyn Stolz
Setting Passage 2
Samuel is the protagonist of Blood on the River and has a big attitude. He likes to pick fights with everyone. He is also an orphan and is going to America to work as an apprentice to Captain John Smith.“ Maybe if I’d been less of a danger to the other boys they’d have let me stay. But the boys started calling me ‘thief’ and ‘jail rat’ and I knew only one way to settle the argument: with my fists.” (Page 7)
He is a confident commoner and soldier. He doesn't like lazy gentlemen and takes a liking to Samuel. He’s smart and can speak the language of the natives. “ Not tall, but stocky and strong. Curly reddish-brown hair and a beard. Flashing green eyes.” (Page 10)
Captain John Smith
He is a patient man of God who is wise and doesn't believe in war. He saves Samuel from serious trouble multiple times and sends prays up to God which saves the colony as well. “Reverend Hunt is a tall, quiet man with broad shoulders and more patience than anyone I have ever known.” (Page 6-7)
She is a young Indian princess and is the favorite daughter of Chief Powhatan. Pocahontas has a good heart and often brought the colony Samuel is in many gifts. She performed in a skit where she pretends to save Captain John Smith. She shockingly has no regard for clothes in the summer. “In one of the canoes sits a little girl. She has straight black hair, cut very short on the front and sides, and fastened in a long braid down her back. She wears several necklaces of pearls and copper, and a mantel of deerskin over one shoulder. As we watch, she jumps out of the canoe and trots up to Captain Smith. She is fairly skipping with excitement at seeing him.” (Page 129)
Protagonist & Antagonist
The protagonist in this novel is 12 year old Samuel Collier. He would rather fight through his problems with his fits than his words, but he also has a loving and caring heart. For example when their colony was attacked by the Indians, Samuel would not let James go to their ship to be killed. The antagonist in the story is survival for the colony, in the new world with all of their struggles.
Problems and Complications
The big problem is trying to survive in the new world with all their struggles. Along their journey they have many complications, such as running out of food, getting attacked by Indians, and dying from the cold and disease.
Surviving in the colony
Indian and English War
No clean water
In 1608 it is believed that Captain John Smith was captured by Powhatan Indians and taken from village to village where there were huge ceremonies. “ Finally I was taken to the village of Werowocomoco. “I was presented to Wahunsonacock, the Great Powhatan himself. He sat on a throne covered with a large robe made of raccoon skin with the tails still on.” (Page 119) They danced, sang, and ate while The Great Powhatan watched. All of a sudden “They dragged me over and forced my head down on one of the stones. Three warriors stood over me with heavy clubs they raised the clubs ready to bash my brains out.” (Page 119) When a little 11 year old girl jumped on John Smith's head and laid hers on his. The Warriors couldn't kill Smith without hurting her as well. Thus saving John smith from his death, however this sudden act wasn’t spontaneous but a skit the Great Powhatan had planned to welcome the English into their tribe. This is a typical Indian tradition where they nearly executing a man in order to adopt them into the tribe. Some historians today doubt that this event ever happened because of the lack of evidence and had assumed John had just wanted attention. Other historians disagree with this theory because John had been known as very honest and this would be a very big act out of character.
What I Learned
I have learned from his book how awful it would be back in Jamestown 1607. There was no dependable food, clean water, or safety from Indians. There were terrible diseases and the weather was brutal in all seasons. Also I have learned how unfair the English were to the Native tribes. I would hate having everything I worked for taken away because some righteous, self centered men thought they had the right to. I am very happy to be living in 2013 with food, water, and protection against others, diseases, and weather.
Pocahontas Saves John Smith
“We have entered a bay; there are tall trees along a sandy shoreline. There is no sign of savages. Then they tell us we’re dropping anchor. A party will go ashore to explore. At last we are allowed up on deck for our first sight of Virginia. It is green, quiet, and desolate. There are no natives coming to see us in canoes as they did in the Caribbean islands. There are no houses, no huts, just wise old trees in spring leaf, standing guard over the sandy shore. Quiet, desolate, and free. We can pick any place, any piece of forest or meadow, and make it ours.” (Page 58-60)
Author: Elisa Carbone
Genre: Historial Fiction
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