Henry Tufts book

Henry Tufts book.jpg


Henry Tufts book


One of the earliest and most detailed accounts of Molly Ockett's life comes from a book about Henry Tufts (1748-1831), a shady character who lived among the Abenaki of western Maine between the spring of 1772 and the spring of 1775, a three-year period during which he learned the Indian language, their medical practices, and their customs. In and out of jail during much of his life, Tufts was, at various times, a counterfeiter, an army deserter, a thief, a bigamist, a doctor, and a preacher. His main reason for visiting the Indians was to find a cure for a serious knife wound he had received in an accident, and fortunate he was that Molly Ockett was there and willing to administer aid. First published in 1807 as A Narrative of the Life, Adventures, Travels, and Sufferings of Henry Tufts, this account provides a rare and intimate glimpse into the private world of an Indian healer during the late 18th century. A new edition of Tufts' book, re-titled The Autobiography of a Criminal, was issued in 1930, and several excerpts from that volume appear below. Tufts died at Limington, Maine, in 1831, "in the eighty-third year of an uncommonly misspent life."



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