Also known as “The Lone Woman of San Nicolas Island,” Juana Maria was a Native American woman who lived on the island of San Nicolas off the coast of Alta California. She was the last surviving member of her tribe and lived alone on the island from 1835 to 1853. Her story captured the imagination of many as she lived in isolation for 18 years, surviving on her own skills and resources.
Juana Maria was removed from the island in 1853 by Captain George Nidever and his crew, who found them in a state of malnutrition and near death. She was taken to the Santa Barbara Mission, where she was nursed and eventually died in 1853. The exact reason for their isolation on the island and the fate of their tribe remain a mystery to this day.
Their story inspired Scott O’Dell’s children’s novel Island of the Blue Dolphins, first published in 1960. The novel imagines the life of Juana Maria and fictionally tells of her experiences on the island. The novel has become a classic of children’s literature and has been widely read and enjoyed by generations of children.
https://news.detroitdailynews.com/2023/03/16/what-is-the-mystery-surrounding-juana-marias-isolation-on-the-island-and-the-fate-of-her-tribe/ What is the mystery surrounding Juana Maria’s isolation on the island and the fate of her tribe?