Jane McCrea was brought to martyrdom and fame by an unfortunate incident during the American Revolutionary War. Different sources quibble over the details of the exact situation, but the general idea is consistent. McCrea was engaged to a British Officer under General Burgoyne’s Army in Colonial America, while the War for Independence was going on.

One day, when Jane and her mother were out from the camp,they were caught by the Native American scouts working for Burgoyne. The scouts often scalped whites who might have been revolutionaries and the British sometimes rewarded the Indians when they brought back scalps. Jane was killed and scalped, and the Indians hoping for pay in return brought the scalp to General Burgoyne. It was soon realized that the scalp was that of Jane McCrea, but General Burgoyne was hesitant to punish the Indians fearing they would leave camp and leave Burgoyne without scouts. His decision to not punish the natives was much to the dismay of Burgoyne’s officer corps who were sympathetic to the loss of their fellow officer's fiancé.

Her death was a significant rallying point for American patriots and was used as propaganda to prove that British rule could not ensure safety in the colonial land. Unfortunately for Jane McCrea she was simply in the wrong place at the wrong time.

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