Roscoe in Coshocton County, Ohio — The American Midwest (Great Lakes)
Why Is It Called Whitewoman Street?
Whitewoman Street is named after a woman named Mary Harris, Mary Harris and her family were the first identifiable persons to live in the Coshocton county area, arriving there about 1745. They were Mohawks from Kahnawake, near Montreal, the so-called "praying Mohawks” due to their being Catholics in that Jesuit-led community. She had been taken captive by the Mohawks at age ten in 1704 in the famous Deerfield, Massachusetts Raid, along with over 100 other people. She became a Mohawk, marrying into that nation, with which she stayed her entire remaining life.
In Ohio living as a Mohawk she was so exceptional that she was known on the frontier as "The White Woman." Around 1750 her town and the river on which it sat in the Coshocton area were named White Woman's Town and White Woman's River on French and English maps of North America. In that sense she was world famous. The French names were Ville des Femmes Blanches and Rivière des Femmes Blanches, respectively.
She lived in Kahnawake as a Mohawk from 1704 until about 1745, marrying and having at least two sons. In 1744 she came to the carrying place (later Fort Edward)
About 1753 her son, Joseph, was involved in the fur trade between Kahnawake and New York. In 1756 Mary was back in Kahnawake. A colonial soldier taken prisoner by her son, Peter, a war chief, stayed in her house. He wrote that she was very kind to him, treating him as her grandson. In 1764 her son, Peter, a war chief, came to the Coshocton area with a war band of Kahnawake Mohawks in support of Col. Bouquet. Peter encouraged the Shawnee to make peace. That is all that is known directly about Mary Harris and her family. She was a good, kind person who coped with much adversity in her life.
All this information is supported by contemporary evidence in documents and first-hand accounts. See the recent book, the third edition of Mary Harris, "The White Woman” of the Ohio Frontier
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Roads & Vehicles • Settlements & Settlers • Women. A significant historical month for this entry is January 1751.
Location. 40° 16.757′ N, 81° 52.59′ W. Marker is in Roscoe, Ohio, in Coshocton County. Marker is at the intersection of North Whitewoman Street and Hill Street, on the left when traveling north on North Whitewoman Street. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 400 N Whitewoman St, Coshocton OH 43812, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Old Warehouse (within shouting distance of this marker); William Roscoe Building - 1840 (within shouting distance of this marker); Jacob Welsh House - c.1840 (within shouting distance of this marker); James LeRetilley Building - 1847 (within shouting distance of this marker); George LeRetilley House - 1853 (within shouting distance of this marker); Daniel Carroll House - c.1850 (within shouting distance of this marker); Dr. Maro Johnson's Office - 1842 (within shouting distance of this marker); Dr. Maro Johnson's House - c.1833 (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Roscoe.
Credits. This page was last revised on September 19, 2022. It was originally submitted on September 14, 2022, by Craig Doda of Napoleon, Ohio. This page has been viewed 93 times since then and 53 times this year. Photos: 1, 2. submitted on September 14, 2022, by Craig Doda of Napoleon, Ohio. • Devry Becker Jones was the editor who published this page.