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October 15, 1880

Discussion in '"Today in History", Literature & Media Review' started by Martin Antonenko, Oct 14, 2021.

  1. Martin Antonenko A Fixture

    The End Of The Free Apaches ...!

    On October 15, 1880, one of the last free-living Apache leaders, the Cihenne Bidu-ya, fell in combat near Ojo Caliente (then Mexcico, now the US state of New Mexico).

    Bidui-ya, called "Victorio" by the whites for some reason ...


    ... was originally a proponent of peaceful coexistence between whites and indigenous people - until the US Army forcibly relocated his tribe to the San Carlos Reservation in 1877 ...:


    From then on he became a rebel and leader of about 250 warriors who also did not want to be locked up at any price!

    Members of other Apache clans also joined his fighters - and many women and children.

    In order to feed himself and his people, Bidu-ya was forced to undertake raids, after which he repeatedly retreated across the border into initially safe Mexico.


    Until the Americans and Mexicans joined forces to liquidate Bidu-ya and his people.

    From then on, 2,000 US-American soldiers ...


    ... among them the black so-called "Buffalo Soldiers" ...


    ... 2000 Mexican soldiers, hundreds of volunteers ...


    ... as well as several Indian auxiliary troops of the Tarahumara, Pima hunted Bidiu-ya and his people mercilessly, but could not catch him ...:


    It wasn't until the US Cavalry Apache collaborators, the famous scouts of the Ciricahua Apaches ...


    ... set on his trail, there were first successes. US General Nelson Miles ...


    ... remarked: "To catch an Apache you need another Apache!"

    The constant persecution battles on both sides of the border constantly decimated the people of Bidu-ya.

    When he was captured and trapped by the Mexican army at Tres Castillos on October 14, 1880, he still had 78 warriors ...


    ... and 65 women with him - no child had survived the hardships of the constant flight!

    The next day the little group of Apaches, including Bidu-ya, was cut down by the far superior Mexicans ...:


    All male Apaches fell in battle - the surviving women were captured by the Mexicans ...


    ... and all later sold into slavery ...:


    But they didn't get all of them!

    At the time of the massacre, one of Bidu-ya's subordinates, Kas-tziden, was on a reconnaissance ride with almost 30 warriors and thus escaped destruction.

    Better known under his "white" name Nana, the 80-year-old started a campaign of revenge ...:


    In less than a month, Nana fought eight battles, killed between 30 and 40 Americans and at least as many Mexicans, captured over 200 horses to replace 100 ridden to death and then fled back to Mexico.

    He escaped with his initially only 15 warriors, more than 1,000 soldiers, not counting the three or four hundred volunteers.

    He was able to hold his own for three years, but had to surrender in May 1883 and moved to the San Carlos Reservation with 374 Apaches, mostly Chihenne and Bedonkohe.

    But the lack of freedom and the untenable living conditions there...


    ... prompted Nana and other famous Apache leaders Goyaałé (Geronimo) ...


    ... Dasoda-hae (Mangas Corolado)...


    ... and Kla-esh (Chihuahua)...


    ... in May 1885 to break out there again. 92 women and children, 8 boys and 30 warriors fled with them.

    Once again the warriors and their families lived the free life of their ancestors. But time was against the Apaches.

    In the spring of 1886 Nana surrendered one last time together with 8 warriors and has since lived as a prisoner of war in Fort Sill, Oklahoma, where he also died in 1894 ...:


    In the photo we see the captured Apache leaders (from left to right) Geronimo, Chihuahua, Nana, Loco, and Jolsanny in Fort Sill ...:

    Airkid, oldtrousers, Nap and 2 others like this.
  2. Dr Bison Active Member

    Thanks for that, Martin.

    For anyone, who wants to know more about this topic, here's 2 books that might be interesting:
    "Once they moved like the wind. Cochise, Geronimo, and the Apache Wars" by David Roberts (Touchstone, New York, 1993)


    "Geronimo, The man, his time, his place" by Angie Debo (Pimlico, London, 1993).

    I enjoyed both.

    Martin Rohmann likes this.
  3. Nap A Fixture

    Interesting details as always .....leaders fighting against overwhelming numbers

    The 2 books from Karl look good as well


    Martin Rohmann likes this.
  4. Airkid PlanetFigure Supporter

    Good post Martin, with some interesting pictures. I notice the popular rifle among the Apache was the Springfield "trapdoor" carbine - an obvious choice as the opposition were also armed with trapdoors so the .45-70 ammo was available by capture.
    Karl - I've read Angie Debo's book on Geronimo - as you say, a good read and very informative. Must check out the other one.

  5. sd0324 PlanetFigure Supporter

    Good one Martin, I used to do a lot of work in Arizona and New Mexico around the Mexican border. Saw a lot of the area the Apache favored. Tough land. As in most wars, atrocities were carried out by both sides. But the time of the Apache was done....it was inevitable.

    Airkid likes this.

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