Drawing from Smith’s own personal journals, this concise biography paints a rich and detailed portrait of one of America’s most intriguing founding fathers. Historian John Thompson guides us through annotated selections of Smith’s most important and compelling writings, adding authoritative perspective and commentary to round out the picture. The volume includes some of the earliest primary source accounts of life in colonial Virginia, including excerpts from Proceedings of the English Colony of Virginia (1612), Generall Historie of Virginia (1624), and The True Adventures and Observations of Captain John Smith (1630).
Readers share eyewitness accounts of Smith’s capture and imprisonment by the Indians, his explorations of the Chesapeake Bay region, and various other adventures and exploits in the New World. We get a firsthand look at Smith’s pivotal role in the founding and governance of colonial Jamestown and his attempts to establish trade relationships with the Native Americans. We also learn the real facts behind Smith’s relationship with Pocahontas—an American legend that pervades our popular culture, from the animated Disney classic to the critically acclaimed 2005 film starring Colin Farrell.
With the upcoming 400th anniversary of the founding of Jamestown, a whole new generation of readers and history buffs will be seeking more information about Smith and his fellow colonists. This lively, illustrated edition will be a valuable resource—providing a fresh, accessible look at a key historical figure and conveying a vivid sense of what life in the New World was like.