||Mary Oatman was involved in the westward expansion of the USA.|
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Mary Ann Oatman
The Oatman family were pioneers ,in 1851 they joined a wagon train headed for southern California, the group to split up and the 6 members of the Oatman family were massacred, by a Native American tribe, the Tolkepayas ,Mary's brother Lorenzo was left for dead but survived.Mary Ann and her sister Olive were captured and enslaved.On the way to their camp,the Tolkepayas pushed the girls hard,Mary Ann was beaten when she refused to go on. She collapsed on the trail after another beating, she was put on a horse with one of the Tolkepayas. The sisters endured the trip and arrived at the Tolkepayas camp four days later.They were now slaves for the Tolkepayas Indians.They invented modes,recalled Olive, and seemed to create necessities of labor, that they might gratify themselves by taxing us to the utmost, and even took unwarranted delight in whipping us on beyond our strength.We soon learned that our condition was that of unmitigated slavery, not to the adults merely, but to the children.
In 1852 Olive and Mary Ann were traded to the Mohaves for two horses and three blankets.The girls were treated well by the Mohaves .They were adopted by Espaniole and Aespaneo.Both Olive and Mary Ann were tattooed on their chins and arms,this was done by by sticking cactus thorns into them and then rubbing dye or charcoal into the wounds.The Mohave Indians did not forcibly tattoo people, so ,Olive and Mary Ann must have agreed to be tattooed.In Mohave tradition the tattoo's were given only to their own people to ensure that they would have a good afterlife.
In 1853 a famine struck the Mohave tribe, Mary Ann said to her sister Olive, I shall die soon. You will live and get away. Olive said She and I were whole days at a time without anything to eat when by some chance, or the kindness of the chief’s daughter we would get a morsel to satisfy our cravings. A number of Indian children and Mary Ann died from starvation .Olive was rescued 5 years after her capture.
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