Page:Life among the Apaches.djvu/235

From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search
This page has been validated.


CHAPTER XIX.


Anecdote of Capt. Bristol.—Surprise and Admiration of the Indians.—They Vote Him a Great Medicine.—Wonders of the Microscope.—Their Modes of Hunting.—Departure of Ojo Blanco.—Apache Dread of Disease.—The Influenza.—Apache Prophet.—His Dream and Interpretation—My Counter Dream and Interpretation.—Useful Services of Dr. Gwyther.—Faithfulness of Gian-nah-tah.—Necessity of Using Artifice.


Among the many unique incidents which occurred at Fort Sumner may be mentioned one, which had a great effect among the Indians gathered at that place. The Navajoes, who had become captives to the "pioneers" of the Column from California, numbered over nine thousand, including well known chiefs and distinguished warriors, women and children. The Apaches proper, who were in like condition, amounted to nearly fifteen hundred. This disparity is sufficient to prove the superior warlike character of the latter tribe; their invincible determination to "fight it out on that line," and their utter intractability. Capt. H. B. Bristol, Fifth United States Infantry, was one of those genial, kind-hearted and educated gentlemen who have the happy faculty of attaching all within the sphere of their acquaintance. A strict disciplinarian, and imbued with a deep-seated love for his profession, he possessed the tact of gaining the affections and confidence of his men, as well as their implicit obedience to order. The suaviter in modo et fortiter in re, for which he became distinguished in the command, gradually spread its influence among the Indians, who are ever ready to appreciate and recog-