Page:Life among the Apaches.djvu/165

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159
LIFE AMONG THE APACHES.

pointing to a splendid gray—is mortally wounded. Sergeant Maynard, now present, has his right arm fractured at the elbow, with a rifle ball, and John Teal we believe to be killed, as we saw him cut off by a band of fifteen or twenty savages, while we were unable to render him any assistance."

The wagons were ordered to be parked; every man was supplied with ammunition and posted to the best advantage; proper attention was paid to my wounded sergeant, and the camp arranged in such a manner as to insure a warm reception to a large body of savages. We remained on the qui vive until one o'clock a. m., when to my extreme surprise and sincere gratification we were joined by John Teal, who was supposed to have been killed. He brought with him his saddle, blanket, sabre and pistols, having lost his horse and spurs. His narrative is so full of interest, and so well illustrates a phase in Apache character, that it is worth recording.

"Soon after we left the pass," said he, "we opened upon a sort of hollow plain or vale, about a mile wide, across which we dashed with speed. I was about two hundred yards in the rear, and presently a body of about fifteen Indians got between me and my companions. I turned my horse's head southward and coursed along the plain, lengthwise, in the hope of outrunning them, but my horse had been too sorely tested, and could not get away. They came up and commenced firing, one ball passing through the body of my horse, just forward of his hind quarters. It was then about dark, and I immediately dismounted, determined to fight it out to the bitter end. My horse fell, and as I approached him, he began to lick my hands. I then swore to kill at least one Apache. Lying down behind the body of my dying animal, I opened fire upon them with my carbine, which