Captain John Smith Review

“Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.”—Ralph Waldo Emerson


Extreme Adventure is not for the faint of heart!  Especially if you are John Smith then you must have endurance that will outlast anyone else, and leave a legacy for others to pursue.  History will come alive when given an opportunity for those who wish to re-live some of the greatest moments that made the United States of America what it is today.  I am beyond ecstatic to present to you this Heroes of History- Captain John Smith book review, which is part of the Heroes of History set and produced by the YWAM Publishing company.

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~With just moving to Virginia in December, our family was thrilled when we found out how much history lies within this fantastic state.  So when asked to review one of the Heroes of History books there was no hesitation as to whom we would choose, but that of Captain John Smith.  My 9-year-old and I were able to journey along with Captain John as he encountered the most exciting, dangerous, frustrating and courageous acts, as he bravely fought to colonize the ‘New World.’  

A Short Summary of Captain John Smith       

~Born to George & Alice Smith the year of 1580 in Lincolnshire, United Kingdom.  As he was growing up he had a restless disposition of not wanting to live the ‘farm life,’ and idolizing Sir Francis Drake did not help the situation.  He eventually convinced his mother to let him travel to France at the age of 16, as he knew some kind of adventure awaited him there, but after arriving in London he couldn’t bring himself to leave and stayed for over a week.  Eventually his travels took him to Paris for a 16-week vacation, but when the money ran out his intentions were that of joining the French Army, which turned into becoming apart of the French Mercenaries instead.  Through a series of meeting different acquaintances John eventually learned of the ‘New World.’  Before this grand adventure of colonizing the ‘New World’ would take place, John would face many hardships that would include being enslaved by Turks, as well as being forced to become a maidservant.  After much perseverance John would escape through Russia, which would then lead him back to England where the Virginia Company of London would take him on the exhibition of crossing the Atlantic in pursuit of Jamestown.  It is in Jamestown where John has his first encounter with indians and then eventually crosses paths with Pocahontas.  Forced to return to England because of physical ailments, John would leave his beloved Jamestown in 1609, never to return again.  


~Who knew history could be so exciting and full of such amazing adventures!  As my son & I were reading this book we took the Jamestown Ferry which crossed directly in front of the exact location that Captain John Smith would have docked his ships as he approached the ‘New World.’  This location has now become a living history museum and they have artifacts which date back to the time of John Smith.  

~For Digging a little deeper into Captain John Smith’s life there is a study guide that accompanies each Heroes of History book.  

~We approached the use of this study guide by incorporating it into our American History curriculum, mapping out the locations that John traveled to, and specifically targeting John Smith’s character as he encountered each situation and his approach to handling it.  This book provided fantastic discussions about Native Americans, war, early trading practices, Jamestown colonization and life aboard ships sailing from England to the ‘New World.’


  • I highly recommend these books for personal character growth
  • Each book can be used as core curriculum, alongside the study guide
  • Appeals to all ages and is great family read aloud
  • Non-Traditional approach to learning history
  • Challenges the reader with appropriate content
  • Will leave your reader wanting to explore the other 27 Heroes of History


 As an adventurous family ourselves we truly enjoyed and appreciated reading Captain John Smith.  Although with all that he accomplished in his lifetime he makes our lives seem so ordinary!

Who ever said history was boring never encountered the legend of John Smith!

Keep Learning,


Connect With YWAM Publishing

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