Was there an actual love story between Pocahontas and John Smith?
Steady as the beating drum
When Smith arrived at Jamestown, Virginia, Pocahontas was only 11 years old. While that may seem young, the age to marry in the Powhatan tribe was 14. Upon Smith’s arrival, he was kidnapped by Pocahontas’s uncle, Opechancanough, and transferred to Werowocomoco.
Smith was staring at two stones and some bad intentions from the Powhatan tribe. One tribe member pulled out a huge club to smash his skull. As the club reached its apex, Pocahontas jumped in front of Smith to stop the deadly blow. To see a family member try to sacrifice her own well being confused everyone in the tribe. Unlike in the film, Smith’s tribe never knew he was kidnapped.
Just around the river-bend
Shortly after, Smith was invited into the tribe. His invitation came with a small price. He had to give the tribe some guns and a grindstone. In return, they gave him Capahowasick, which is now known as Capahosic.
Smith was indebted to Pocahontas for saving his life. He could have easily been her butler for the rest of his life, but as it turns out that wasn’t the case.
Colors of the wind
The relationship between Smith and Pocahontas is better characterized as brother-sister. Pocahontas was sent to deliver goods to him on a daily basis. Her time spent with the English was very crucial. At one point, Pocahontas was sent to aid in the release of Powhatan prisoners. Over time, relations and negotiations deteriorated and both sides started fighting.
Any sort of “love” shown by Pocahontas and Smith was platonic like Leslie and Ron from Parks and Recreation. Though the story had some basis in reality, most of the elements in the movie were embellished or nuanced from the true story in order to tell a more interesting tale.