The story of survival: Juana Maria – the last of the Nicholas Indians

Long-term solitary survival? No, not in constant stress – the body gradually adapts. And no, it’s not. The main problem will be maddening boredom. The wildest information hunger.

But it’s not a problem at all. It makes it possible for it to be at least some kind of common sense. For a very long time. For example, Indian girl Juana maria for more than 18 years all alone. And we will try to tell you about it.


Isle San nicholas – a small rocky cliff California The area is about 60 square kilometers. It is a vegetation of the coast. Fish in the coastal waters are dead, even cetaceans are found. And it is now. And in 1835, when our story was even better. Tribal living on an island Nicholas Indians it was quite enough to maintain a sustainable population for that century.

Yes, in 1602, when a spanish explorer Sebastian vizcaino landed there. It is a tradition to survive culture. Spaniards stupidly left nicholas alone and focused on richer and more prosperous tribes. It is two permanent satellites of the white colonialists. But, alas, only for a while.


Beginning of the nineteenth century. Aleuts swim to the island. Aggressive hunters. But there are guns, big boats and thirst for profit. Forces, to put it mildly, are not equal. Residents will learn about the situation California of the local church are organizing a “rescue operation” to export nicholas to the continent. It is not a good idea to take care of the situation. The first of these “benefits” were diseases for which the Indians were, of course, not ready. If so, you can’t have been saved. We wanted the best, but it turned out …

But not all were taken out. It was a girl who was stupidly forgotten San nicholas. It was urgently necessary to take away the rest. Therefore, it is no longer up to this. Indians nicholas ended, the Aleuts calmly hunt, trade is conducted – everyone is happy. In addition to the girlfriend San Nicholas.

Life and difficulty

It’s a road to make it out. Not. Juana maria Where they can hide. Actually, she had to make it a little bit more. It is not possible to die of hunger? The last of Nikonello collected bird eggs and fished. At night, mostly. It was not possible to make it out.

When the Aleuts left, it became much easier. It was possible to see how it was. A life Juan maria she was alone on the island. Do you have any questions? So she took up the usual thing.

Abandoned Nikonello settlement, the Aleuts are probably burned. Just because they could. It is where the island is far away from the coast, where it is flew, nested and swam food. So Juana Maria was forced to build a new home for herself. It is not clear. So I had to look for more suitable material. They became whale bones, since various cetaceans were periodically thrown onto the island. The problem of food. Whale meat, edible shells, cormorants and their eggs, to keep the strength of the body.

You need to be able to make comfortably? Plus, after all, there are no cold winters on the California coast; warm clothes. It is in this mode Juana maria lived on the island San nicholas up until 1853 when a sea otter hunter George nidever do not swim.

the end

Juana maria despite 18 years of complete loneliness. She just couldn’t communicate with her savior nikonello language belonged to a special language group, which has no limits around. Of course, she didn’t know any other languages. I had to communicate with gestures. But this was enough to reach an understanding.

Restored Indian woman My wife didn’t seem to mind. But … 7 weeks after reaching the continent, Juana maria falls dysentery and dies. Yes. Exactly. This is a group of people who got to her.

Scott O’Dil even wrote a book about it – “Blue dolphin island“. The Indian tribe of Nikonello.

As you can see – it also happens. Even a very experienced survivor cannot be protected. Where there is a problem. So, comrades, beware!

History of survival: Juana Maria. The last of the nicholas indians

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