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Hannah Dustin

Pioneer (1657 - 1737)

Hannah Dustin

The ordeal of Hannah Dustin (also Duston) is among the most horrific in New England colonial history. According to an early account by Cotton Mather, Dustin was captured on March 15, 1697 by a group of about 20 Indians and pulled from her bed one week after giving birth to her eighth child. Her husband managed to get the others to safety. The infant was killed when a member of the raiding party smashed it against a tree. Dustin and small group of hostages were marched about 60 miles from her home in Haverhill, MA to an island in the Merrimack River near Concord. Enlisting the help of others, including her nurse and an English boy previously captured, the group managed, amazingly, to kill 10 of their captors. Dustin sold the scalps to the local province for 50 pounds in reparation. A monument to Dustin can be seen in Haverhill and the site of her escape with companions Mary Neff and Samuel Lennardeen can be seen in Boscowen, NH. The Hannah Dustin Trail in Pennacook leads to another monument on the island on the Contoocook River. John Greenleaf Whittier popularized the incident in poetry. A symbol or heroism and independence in the 19 th century, the Hannah Dustin story has suffered a case of political incorrectness of late. Her name has been used to sell every conceivable product including liquor and horse racing and still remains extremely attractive to people seeking to prove a genealogical connection. Her ordeal during the Indian raids (incited by the French and English) of King Williams war also included the Coccecho Massacre in Dover, the Oyster River Raid in Durham and the Bracket Lane attack in Rye, NH.

Taken hostage, she fought back
with deadly force

More Famous NH People 

HANNAH DUSTIN LINKS

BIOGRAPHY

HannahDustin.com
An amazing collection of images and information related to the story including old postcards, photos of the Dustin Garrison, genealogical information and "All Things Hannah".

Hannah Artifacts
Given to the Haverhill Library by a descendant

Cotton Mather's Report
Made even more famous by his role in the Salem Witch trials. Mather (1663-1728) interviewed Hannah Dustin and offered this report

1839 Version of Hannah's Story
By John Warner Barber reprinted on a Haverhill family web page

Haverhill Duston Photos
Click for clear large images of the monument, the landing and the garrison house. Most other online images, sadly, are poor. These are better.

Dustin Genealogy & Biography

Dustin Bio on Virtualogy

Haverhill Public Library
Good place to ask questions about Hannah

Haverhill Historical Society

KING WILLIAM'S WAR (1689 - 1697)

Abenaki History Timeline
King William's War events in the coastal New England area

King William's War from Dow
Chapter in Dow's History of Hampton, a related NH town

King William's War

Cochecho Massacre in Dover, NH

Oyster River Raid in Durham, NH

More Famous NH People 

Photo of Hannah Duston Monument Courtesy of
The Haverhill Chamber of Commerce

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