A Brave and Cunning Prince



The extraordinary story of the Powhatan chief who waged a lifelong struggle to drive European settlers from his homeland

In the mid-sixteenth century, Spanish explorers in the Chesapeake Bay kidnapped an Indian child and took him back to Spain and subsequently to Mexico. The boy converted to Catholicism and after nearly a decade was able to return to his land with a group of Jesuits to establish a mission. Shortly after arriving, he organized a war party that killed them.

In the years that followed, Opechancanough (as the English called him), helped establish the most powerful chiefdom in the mid-Atlantic region. When English settlers founded Virginia in 1607, he fought tirelessly to drive them away, leading to a series of wars that spanned the next forty years the first Anglo-Indian wars in America and came close to destroying the colony.

Brave and Cunning Prince is the first book to chronicle the life of this remarkable chief, exploring his early experiences of European society and his long struggle to save his people from conquest.

This publication was supported by, “The Two Friends of History Fund for Indian Initiatives and Educational Programs,” a special fund supporting Jamestown’s educational programs and materials to share the narrative of First Peoples.


Author: James Horn

Published: 2021

Pages: 304


ISBN: 9780465038909

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