Pattyrflg's Reviews > The Blue Tattoo: The Life of Olive Oatman

The Blue Tattoo by Margot Mifflin
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's review
Jan 27, 12

Read in December, 2011

The author notes that to the best of her ability she has tried to write a true account of the life of Olive Oatman. Olive and her sister, Mary, were kidnapped by the Yavapai Indians and were slaves for the year they lived among them. They were ransomed from the Yavapai by the Mohave Indians. Mary Oatman was very weak and eventually died, but Olive lived in peace and security among the Mohaves for four years. The girls believed the rest of their family had been massacred by the party of Yavapai who took them hostage. After 5 years among the Indians, Olive is ransomed, taken to Fort Yuma and finds out that her older brother also survived. Olive was tattooed on her chin by the Mohave, thus the title “The Blue Tattoo.” Olive travelled the country and lectured on her time among the Indians, eventually married and adopted one daughter.

This book was well researched and the author used many sources to illustrate the lifestyle of the Mohave, the history of the time and the inconsistencies in some of the earlier accounts of Olive’s time among the Mohave. I was interested in reading this book from a review in our local newspaper and because it was local Arizona history.

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