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 was once setting up her residency—a declare that lead the way for her removing to the poorhouse. finally, even if, it intended the ultimate elimination from the ancestral land she had so tenaciously maintained. hence was once William Penn’s “peaceable kingdom” preserved.
A Lenape one of the Quakers reconstructs Hannah Freeman’s heritage, touring from the times of her grandmothers prior to ecu cost to the start of the 19th century. the tale that emerges is one in every of patience and resilience, as “Indian Hannah” negotiates lifestyles with the Quaker buddies who hire her, entrust their young children to her, hunt down her therapeutic talents, and, whilst she is weakened through disorder and age, deal with her. And but those are an identical acquaintances whose households have dispossessed hers. attention-grabbing in its personal correct, Hannah Freeman’s lifestyles can be striking for its special view of a local American girl in a colonial group in the course of a time of dramatic transformation and upheaval. particularly it expands our realizing of colonial heritage and the local adventure that historical past usually renders silent.
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Extra resources for A Lenape among the Quakers: The Life of Hannah Freeman
Meanwhile, the leaders of the Virginia Yearly Meeting petitioned the colony’s military leaders, asking that their “youth” be reprieved from the operation of the new militia law. ” By this time Washington, sensing the futility of coercive measures against Friends’ passive resistance, had decided to release them “from the guard-house” after local Quakers vouched they would not flee. Now “at Liberty again,” the former captives “got some Business among . . 36 Friends throughout Virginia appear to have suffered no further oppression from colonial officials during the Seven Years’ War, in part because after 1758 Virginia no longer faced direct attack and pressure to raise troops fell.
Material prosperity could engender unwarranted individual pride and distract Friends from spiritual ends and simplicity. Affluent Quakers, moreover, could misuse their wealth and spend it on frivolous material possessions. 21 However, even if successful, sincere Friends sought to stand apart from the larger world. Quakers’ practice of endogamous marriage, or marriage within the sect, helped to ensure that they remained a separate people. As Barry Levy argues, the marriage discipline played a key role in reinforcing Quaker values and practices.
Although in the late eighteenth century Quakers began removing themselves from positions of authority within civil government because they believed such offices might require them to act in ways “inconsistent with” their “religious principles,” few such restrictions existed before midcentury. 30 The inclusion of Quakers within local county and church government also reflected their rising social status and economic prosperity. Coming to northern Virginia in part to ensure continued economic independence, Friends’ industry enabled many of them to acquire considerable wealth.
A Lenape among the Quakers: The Life of Hannah Freeman by Dawn G. Marsh