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Book details
  • Genre:HISTORY
  • SubGenre:United States / 19th Century
  • Language:English
  • Pages:256
  • eBook ISBN:9781732390317
  • Paperback ISBN:9781732390324

Red Tears

by N.K. Parten

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Little is known about Prudence Mims or her family.  History rarely remembers fourteen-year-old girls. Fort Mims was the home Samuel Mims and his family when on August 30, 1813, a Creek Red Stick War Party attacked the fort killing not only the 100 Mississippi Volunteer Militia who camped there but also over 200 innocent men, women and children seeking shelter.  Based on family lore, Red Tears is the story of the events leading up to the Massacre at Fort Mims and how Prudence Mims, her mother, and brothers escaped the bloodiest massacre of a frontier fort in early American History.



Based on family lore, Red Tears is the untold story of Fort Mims Massacre and how Prudence Mims, her mother, and brother’s narrow escape when two worlds collided on August 30, 1813, resulting in the worst massacre by Woodland Indians in American history - forever changing the framework of a continent. 

Prudence flourished as the youngest daughter of a prominent planter in the frontier wilderness of the Tensaw Delta in present-day Alabama. Her father, Samuel Mims, came to the Mississippi Territory as an Indian Trader during the American Revolution.  Acquiring a land grant from the governor of Spanish West Florida, Mims built a home for his family and for years they lived in peace in the ancestral home of Creek Indians. While living among with the Southern Native Tribes, Mims learned their language and customs becoming friends with many prominent Creek Chiefs including Chief Alexander McGillivray and Chief William Weatherford.  However, everything changed when the United States exerted their territorial claims to the southern region of the American frontier, and the push of settlers from the former British Colonies began.  Unfortunately, the Creek Indians were in the way. 

In 1799 the boundary survey between the Mississippi Territory and West Florida moved south putting the Mims Plantation squarely in lands claimed by the United States.  The violence between settlers and the Woodland Indian Tribes escalated from the Great Lakes, across the Ohio River Valley and the Southern Frontier.  From this turmoil, a Shawnee Prophet emerged.  The Prophet Tecumseh began preaching that the unification of all Native American Tribes was the only way to stem the tide of white settlers into their ancestral homelands.  Many Creeks became followers of Tecumseh, calling themselves Red Stick.  The Red Sticks believed that a return to the “old ways” by purification of the Creek Race was the path restore their tribe to its former power and the only way to achieve this was to rid themselves of the white influences.   Before long, Red Sticks began to punish Samuel Mims’ Creek neighbors in the Tensaw who’d become “too Americanized”.  In 1813, Mims built an eight-foot wooden picket fence around his home to protect his property from Red Stick aggressions.  In time, the Mims Family would become collateral damage in a game of cat and mouse when the Mississippi Volunteer Militia set up camp at what would become known as Fort Mims.

About the author

I’ve always been fascinated by my heritage.  My family’s lineage seemed to be a source of great pride for both my mother and father.  As a child, I remember the stories my mother and grandmother used to tell about me lineage, in particular, the story of the 1813 Massacre of Fort Mims.  A few years ago, I began a journey researching our family lore, discovering something surprising.  Not only did the stories I heard as a child go hand in hand with the accepted historical event of the massacre, but historians consistently stated that no one knew the whereabouts of my kinfolks at the time of the attack or their fate afterward. In my debut novel, Red Tears, I tell the story of the events leading up to the Fort Mims Massacre through the eyes of my fifth great-grandmother, Prudence Mims and her harrowing escape from the bloodiest massacre in the frontier history of the United States.

Earning a Bachelor’s of Science in Mechanical Engineering from Texas A&M Kingsville in 1983, I was one of the first few women who graduated from the College of Engineering.  I never considered myself a trailblazer, but the longer I work in the Engineering world and in particular the Energy Industry the more I realize that there are few women around me with the same level of experience as me. 

I love my work and consider myself a nerd.  I enjoy my work designing and building pipelines, oil production facilities, refineries and chemical plants in the Gulf Coast region.  As a Project Engineer, I have over thirty years of experience in writing highly technical documents like reports, specification, and procedures, and proud to bring a “woman’s touch” to this world. 

Most of the time the things I write, though important, are rarely read cover to cover.  I am excited about making the transition into historical literature.  I must say it is very gratifying to know that I have finally written something that is entertaining to read.  There is a joke among engineers that goes:

The pessimist sees the glass as half empty.  The optimist sees the glass as half full.  The engineer has performed calculations that determined that the volume of the vessel is approximately twice as large as required for the application.

I am delighted to see the glass half full!

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