Page:Life among the Apaches.djvu/29

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CHAPTER III.


To the Copper Mines.—Encounter with Cuchillo Negro.—Fearful massacre of Apaches.—Their Terrible Revenge.—Apache Method of Hunting Ducks and Geese.—Apaches Hunting Antelopes.—Mangas Colorado.—My Camp.


In the latter part of January, 1850, Mr. Bartlett took advantage of the march of Col. Craig, commanding the military escort of the Boundary Commission, to order Dr. Webb, Mr. Thurber and myself to the Copper Mines of Santa Rita, as Col. Craig had determined to make that place his head-quarters until the extended operations of the Commission should demand a more advanced post. Dr. Webb, Secretary of the Commission, and Mr. Thurber, Botanist, rode in Mr. Bartlett's carriage, which he had loaned them for the trip, but I preferred to take the saddle, being mounted on an uncommonly fine horse I had bought from Capt. A. Buford, First United States Dragoons. In order not to be distressed by the slow, painful and tiresome marches of the infantry, Dr. Webb invariably ordered Wells, the carriage driver, to hurry forward to the next camping ground, and we generally arrived three or four hours in advance of the troops, my horse keeping up with the carriage, for I would not leave my party in so dangerous an Indian country as the one we were then penetrating. Sometimes, when the road was rough and difficult for the carriage, I was accustomed to ride ahead in search of game, being always armed to the teeth with two belt and two holster six-shooters, a Sharp's carbine and a large bowie knife. On