Hi Doug, Here is som information on Ruth (Bragdon) Wardwell, Eliakim's wife.
From, Folk of the Majorbagaduce, " Ruth was carried off by Indians, married an Indian Chief, and ultimately returned to husband Eliakim Wardwell. 'For refusing to attend the established church, she and other members of her family were repeatedly fined, until rendered destitute of the actual necessities of life. It is related that on a Sabbath Day while so reduced, Mrs. Wardwell entered the church service in a nearly nude state, and, after telling the people gathered there her sorrowful condition was the result of unfair fines imposed upon her, she solemnly invoked the curse of God upon the entire gathering.' For this she was publicly whipped to the extent of 35 lashes upon her bare back. She is said to have had a daughter, Meribah, with the Indian Chief, and to have brought the daughter with her as she escaped and returned to Eliakim."
"A study of the documents available today indicates that the 'well-cherished family tradition'...was based on a misinterpretation of the evidence. Examination of certain 18th century records leads to the firm conclusion that no Indian of any rank either captured or forcibly 'married' Ruth Bragdon Wardwell."
- Who was Meribah Wardwell's Father?, The American Genealogist, Volume 55, 1979, Edward F Holden, Genealogist, NH State Library
Province and Court Records of Maine, March 1711:
"Eliakim Wardell & Ruth his wife being Summoned to answer their presentment for fornication he appearing for himselfe & in behalfe of his wife & owning the fact, Its Considered by the Court that they recieve Seven Stripes apiece on their Naked backs at the post & to pay Fees of Court 10s apiece or to pay a fine of Twenty five Shillings to her Majesty and fees of Court as aforesd, & Stands Comitted, By his humble Petition 7s6d apiece of their fine is Remitted."