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Cynthia Ann Parker - Pioneer of the West

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Birth of Cynthia Ann Parker:

ca. 1825, Crawford County, Illinois

Death:

ca. 1871

Early Influences:

  • She moved to Texas with her family when she was nine or ten.
  • A Comanche raiding party attacked Fort Parker and took five people hostage, including Cynthia.

Historical Significance:

Cynthia Ann Parker began life as a citizen of the United States. However, after her capture at the hands of the Comanche at a young age she became a part of the tribe. She was approached several times to rejoin her family but each time the overture was met with resistance. In fact, it was reported that the only way to actually bring her back from her Indian captors would be by force. She had chosen this new life and married a member of the Comanche tribe. She went on to have several children and lived with the Indians for almost 25 years. She actually never returned to white society willingly. She was captured by Texas Rangers in 1860 and returned to her surviving family. She seemed to never reconcile with leaving her Indian family. She made several attempts to escape and return to the Indian life she was forced to leave. Even though she was unable to return to her Indian family, she was responsible for an important link in Comanche-US relations. Her son went on to become an influential leader in the early reservation era.

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