Wednesday, May 31, 2017

The Apache Wars: The Hunt for Geronimo, the Apache Kid, and the Captive Boy Who Started the Longest War in American History by Paul Andrew Hutton

This is a very comprehensive collection of facts about the Apaches, the military and the Mexicans.  Trying to corral the Indians on a reservation was almost impossible.  They were nomads and moved where the crops grew, the game was plentiful and the weather acceptable.  The white man just wanted to get them out of the area he wanted to develop.  The Indians wouldn't leave.  War ensued...

I received this book from Blogging for Books for this review.  The book has been published and you can grab a copy now.

I was familiar with Geronimo because I live in southern NM and they have a museum for him in Truth or Consequences, a highway that is a scenic route and called Geronimo's trail and a lookout above Kingston that states Geronimo hid in the hills there with his band.  What I didn't realize was how far he ranged.

The Indians are from various tribes; some are enemies, some are friends.  They have their own code of conduct and they refused to honor map lines that designated states and cities.  The leaders who sent the military after them changed often.  One moment they got a gracious offer to stay in one location, then it was rescinded and other terms applied.  Some of them only wanted to eliminate the Indians.  There were lies told, massacres, and barbarian acts by both the Indians and the white man.  This is not a history to be proud of.

The story of the Captive Boy wasn't one I was familiar with.  Geronimo blamed him for all his problems but Geronimo was really the cause of them.  He'd promise things and then break his promise being no better than the soldiers he was dealing with.

The Apache Kid was another new Indian to me.  He disappeared and nobody knows what really happened to him.  Cochise is part of the story, too.

This is a well-put-together document with facts from everywhere.  The bibliography and notes at the end of the story are several pages.  You could pick one Indian from this group and write a term paper on him.  There are also pictures to make them real to you.  Their history is sad but factual.  If you're not familiar with Indian history, this will open your eyes.

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