Page:Life among the Apaches.djvu/314

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Prior to the time of Mangas Colorado, several disputes of a serious character had occurred between these two tribes, but that shrewd Indian statesman managed to bestow one of his daughters upon the most noted of the Navajo chiefs, and finally succeeded in restoring the strictest amity, which continued without cessation during his long life devoted to his people's good, and until the Navajoes, angered at the surrender of the Apaches at Fort Sumner, made a raid upon their horses, and were driven off with great slaughter. But the enmity engendered by such conflicts never extended to parties outside the Reservation. Fort Bascom, situated on a branch of the Red river, one hundred and twenty-five miles east-north-east from Fort Sumner, was frequently visited by Comanche Indians, and on one occasion a large band, numbering nearly two hundred, informed the commander at Bascom that they intended to "clean out" the Apaches located at Sumner. That officer replied: "Do not attempt so foolish a thing. There are three companies of soldiers at that place, two of which are cavalry, and so sure as you molest the Apaches under their charge they will not only fight you themselves, but will arm and place the Apaches in the field against you. Take my advice and let them alone." Shortly afterward, while out with a small party, I met this same band of Comanches, when the chief repeated his intention to me, and told me what the commander of Bascom had said. Divining the Indian's drift, I immediately replied: "You tell me nothing new. We have all heard this before, and have made preparations to give you a welcome commensurate with your fame as a warrior. My commander has sent me out with these twenty-five men to find you and conduct you to his camp. The Comanches and Americans are friends. He does not wish