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John Jewitt

Born on May 21, 1783, John Rodgers Jewitt was the son of Edward Jewitt, a blacksmith in Lincolnshire, England, who wanted his son to further his education and become a surgeon. When his father moved his business to the seaport of Hull, John heard the call of the sea and signed on as the armourer on the Boston, an American sailing ship that left England and rounded Cape Horn for what was then called Vancouver’s Island.

John began his journal on June 1 using ink he made by boiling and filtering plant and berry juices with powdered coal. He entered the historical record with his memoirs about the 28 months he spent as a captive of Maquinna of the Nuu-chah-nulth people on the Pacific coast of what is now Canada. His memoir is a major source of written information about the indigenous peoples of the Pacific Northwest Coast.

Although he had an Aboriginal wife at Nootka, John married Hester Jones on Christmas Day, 1809. John Jewitt died January 7, 1821, in Hartford, Connecticut.

  Books by John Jewitt

White Slaves of Maquinna
John R. Jewitt's Narrative of Capture and Confinement at Nootka
by John Jewitt
Release Date: January 2000
CDN$ 16.95 (paperback)
Heritage House Publishing


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