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Who or What killed Pocahontas?

We all have heard or seen a movie about the notorious love affair between Pocahontas and John Smith. Well the story didn’t quite happen the way we’ve heard or seen in movies. Legend has it that Pocahontas saved John Smith from native warriors who were about to club him to death. The story goes that Pocahontas ran to John Smith, cradled his head in her arms, and the warriors let him live. This is questioned by historians as this story is nowhere to found in John Smith’s journals. As far as them having a love affair shortly after this incident may not be true, as Pocahontas is believed to have been just twelve at the time (1607) and John Smith was twenty nine. What apparently happened though was that Pocahontas developed a girl crush on the dashing John Smith. It is known that Pocahontas did visit the Jamestown settlement frequently. Evidently she had a crush on him as she stopped visiting the settlement when John Smith went back to England in 1609.


In 1612 Pocahontas was taken captive by the Englishmen. She asked about John Smith and was told he had died. She was told this lie by John Rolfe who unbeknownst to her wanted her for himself. And in 1614 John Rolfe married her, she learned English, and was given the Christian name of Rebecca. In 1616 she accompanied her husband to England and it is here she finds out that John Smith is in fact alive, is married and has several children. Her husband John lied to her.  John Smith went to see Rebecca and according to a note in his journal, it was a quick visit, and Rebecca was not well. He said: “After a modest salutation, without any word, she turned about, obscured her face as not seeming well contented and in that humor…we all left her…”

The day she, her son and husband were going to return to America, at the age of 21, Rebecca lapsed into a coma and died. But what killed her? Was it a broken heart? Did her husband speak the truth when he said Rebecca developed a fever the same day of her departure? Or was she murdered by a husband who became consumed with jealously? We will never know. The answer lies in an unmarked grave in St. George Church cemetery, located some twenty miles east of London.

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25 Comments to “Who or What killed Pocahontas?”


  2. Sorry for delay in posting this comment! I hope you found all the information you needed!

  3. wow thats realy sad i dont know who im more sorry for her who loved a man who could never love her back or the fact tht he might not have suspected it sad sad sad prefer disneys movie we all want to belive in things that are’nt true :'(

  4. im surprised they have’nt tried to find out what did kill her with all the technology we now have .

  5. I was surprised and disappointed that she died when things were just opening up for her and at such an early age. Maybe she didn’t want to go back home. I also find the elements of pediophilia in that era,amongst Western colonialists quite intriguing. But Pocahantas was a clever girl for her age.

  6. Probably really did die from some infectios disease caught from the ignorant people who kidnapped her. What could be more awful for a young teen to be abducted brainwashed taken from her dad and husband then impregnated. Just despicable.

  7. Her grave is NOT unmarked.
    It is very clearly marked with her Native and her Christian name

  8. Bummer! I just saw the film, “The New World”. Why I believed the story I don’t know. It’s very sad that Rolfe lied to her about Smith’s death, if that’s true that is. History is a funny thing. We can only do what we may with the information that was so poorly recorded at that time.
    It’s very intriguing that she may have been killed by a jealous Rolfe. I had not put those two things together. The fact that she fell ill and her later meeting with John Smith that is. Did she only find out about him still being alive at that time also?
    A women’s first “Love” seems to be a pretty big deal to many of them. (So I’m told) Who knows? Maybe someone will find a way to use her remains to find out more some day. Does it matter? Of course it does. Our history I would hope would help us to avoid such costly mistakes in the future.

  9. man thats really sad that smith married someone else when she loved him forever.i really want to know who or what killed her. :'(

  10. I am a descendant of Pocahontas sister Cleopatra, and I believe that Pocahontas was murdered by greedy Englishmen. The best way to destroy a nation, is to destroy its favorite symbol, and let their greed of the native lands , kill off the inhabitants as well, in brutal ways. People love a good love story, even if it leads to a young girls murder. The colonist had no real love for Pocahontas, only to use her in England, after she was kidnapped, and taken to England and never allowed to return to native land and her people. The colonists knew that the best way to control the natives was by threats, lies and broken promises, and cruelty.

  11. She died from small pox. Anyone who has done the slightest bit of research would have know this

  12. Thank you Natalie for popping on by, but you are not correct in saying that she definitely died of smallpox. Her dying of smallpox is just one of the many theories surrounding her death. A theory and no more.

  13. alexis Bronkowski

    I realy want to know beacause im related to her on my moms.side isnt that cool

  14. alexis Bronkowski

    I want to see her grave

  15. That is totally cool! And if I were you, I’d continue doing some more in depth research and see if maybe one day you can visit England to visit her grave. Sorry for taking this long to post your comments, but I’ve had a long, long past couple of months! Thanks for popping on by.

  16. I think that the English poisoned her. They have a long history of executing people that get in their way of world wide dominance. Such a sad story and so different from the Disney fairy tale.
    It just shows the amount of lies that we are being told to keep the truth hidden.

  17. Kelly Lynn O'neil

    I am a direct descendent of Pocahontas. She is my 12th Great Grandmother. As unfortunate as it is that English John R did this to her, had she not given birth to her son, my entire family wouldn’t be here. The genes passed down generations and I’ve spent my childhood believing in true love and running around barefooted saving all mother nature creatures. Empathy, strong willed, independent, long black hair and English green eyes, I am the daughter of a legend. And as a legend does, she will forever live on. Her death was not in vein.

  18. Im pretty sure she died in childbirth, since it was common back then

  19. I am not related to Pocahontas but I like to do research on her. I find it nice to find out the true story behind her I have loved her since I was a little girl.

  20. I was about 15 when I heard Pocahontas’ true story in school and according to Missouri textbooks (and not saying this is the correct story)Pocahontas was never in love with John Smith. That theory was cooked up by the colonists and Indians watching the two of them constantly together. In my book it said something like, “Pocahontas was the only Indian who wasn’t hostile towards Smith and despite her age was very wise about that land”. Sometime later John Smith was injured on the leg by the Indians and was shipped back to America. John R came to America when Pocahontas was 11. Pocahontas married John Rolfe when she was 13,they stayed in America until she was of proper age, (meanwhile having had her son at 16) took her to England, and on the way to..(I cant remember) she contracted smallpox and died on the ship.

  21. This is a very good story on Pocahontas. And John Smith.

  22. I was so surprised yo hear this.It made me feel sad and Happy at the same time. God bless!!

  23. wow that’s really interesting Tyne Williams, I never knew that.And I thought she lapsed into a coma from who knows what and died but I guess there’s like so many stories known about her and the only person to possibly know the truth about her was John Smith

  24. I thought she died of tuberculosis ??…

  25. Plz tell me how she died I am watching the cartoon Verizon and I am so curious how she died so old tell me how she did!!!

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