O'Connell, James F.

print
bookmark
comment
  • Currently 0/5 Stars.
You may use the stars on the left to rate and leave feedback for the current article. No registration is required. Waiting for 5 votes 0.0 of 5 stars (0 votes) — Thanks for your vote

Please fill out the following optional information before submitting your rating:



According to his story (first published 1836) O'Connell was a crewman on the ship John Bull, which was wrecked in the 1820s. He and a few fellow crewmen then sailed in an open boat, landing after four days (and 800 miles/1300km!) on Ponape island in the Pacific (now the main island and capital of the Federated States of Micronesia), where they were captured by the local people. He was adopted by a chief, married the chief's daughter, became completely acculturated, eventually became a chief himself, before being rescued or escaping.

His narrative of his 11 years there is the first reliable account of the island, its people, history and language, and he was the first European to visit the ancient megalithic ruins on the offshore island of Nan Madol. After returning to the west O'Connell made a living by exhibiting his extensive Ponapan tattoos in sideshows. Although there is some doubt about how O'Connell got to Ponape originally, there is no doubt about the tattoos or the extent of his knowledge of the island.

References

O'Connell, James F. A Residence of Eleven Years in New Holland and the Caroline Islands: Being the Adventures of James F. O'Connell, Edited from His Verbal Narration. (Canberra: Australian National University Press, 1971)
Sacks, Oliver. The Island of the Colour-Blind; and Cycad Island. (London: Macmillan, 1996), pp. 65-66

Indexes

European
Federated States of Micronesia
Ireland
19th Century
Exploration, Adventure
Rulers, Nobles, Chiefs, Presidents, Prime Ministers
Social Services and Social Sciences
Theater, Broadcasting, Cinema
Adopted as an Adult
To Provide Heirs, As Protégés, etc.
Captured by Another Tribe or Group
Others ("Strangers")
Wealthy, Famous, Noble or Divine Adoptive or Foster Families
Trans-Racial, Trans-Tribal, International or Trans-Cultural Adoption or Fostering
Customary or Traditional Adoption, Informal and Extra-Legal Care
Visitor Comments (0) - Be the first to comment
Adding your comments contributes to the adoption community. Please keep all comments on topic and civil. Visitors are invited to comment and vote for or flag comments based on appropriateness and helpfulness. All comments must adhere to our commenting rules and are subject to moderation.

To see local Adoption resources, please select a location (U.S. only):


Need a Home Study?
Adoption Photolisting
Jar'quan (TX / 16 / M)
Jarquan, who also goes by "JQ," is a very polite, kind, giving, and funny youth. He enjoys sports, basketball, biking, video games, and visiting with his siblings. He... [more]
Parent Profiles
A home of laughter a home of love a home to share. We are Sherrie and Anita and are happy and honored to share our story with you. We are so excited to be parents! We look... [more]
Directory of Adoption Professionals
Find a professional
for all of your adoption needs including:

Note: Our authors are dedicated to honest, engaged, informed, intelligent, and open conversation about adoption. The opinions expressed here may not reflect the views of Adoption.com.

Settings Help Feedback
Template Settings
Width: 1024     1280
Choose a Location:
Choose a Theme: