What does John Smith do that amazes the Indians?

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lsumner eNotes educator| Certified Educator

John Smith amazes the Indians with gunfire. The Indians had never seen guns or gunpowder. This is a new phenomenon. The Indians were amazed by the guns and gunpowder as you can see in the account published by John Smith in 1624:

Two days after, Powhatan having disguised himself in the most fearfulest manner he could, caused Captain Smith to be brought forth to a great house in the woods, and there upon a mat by the fire to be left alone. Not long after, from behind a mat that divided the house was made the most dolefulest noise he ever heard; then Powhatan, more like a devil than a man, with some two hundred more as black as himself, came unto him and told him now they were friends, and presently he should go to Jamestown, to send him two great guns, and a grindstone, for which he would give him the county of Capahowosick, and for ever esteem him as his son Nantaquoud."

Truly, the Indians were in total amazement at the guns. This is a type of weapon that they had not seen or used before. The guns were fierce. Having only used bows and arrows, the guns represented stronger warfare. Powhatan is willing to give up land in exchange for guns.

The colonists had power over the Indians with the guns. The Indians desired to have the guns to be able to compete with the colonists. John Smith was amazing, but his guns were more amazing.

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