Page:Life among the Apaches.djvu/49

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LIFE AMONG THE APACHES.

way did they go? asked the Mexican leader. I pointed out the direction, and also called his attention to the volume of dust raised by the retreating savages. He thanked me, placed himself at the head of his column, cried out, "Marchamos valientes"—let us march, brave fellows—and took a course the very opposite of the one pointed out. I then and there made up my mind, that if a similar affair should ever happen where I was, and a Mexican should inquire the route of the Indians, I would indicate the opposite to the one actually taken.

On our return from Sonora we met a force of two hundred Mexican soldiers in the Guadalupe Pass, who informed us that a party of ten Americans had been waylaid by the Apaches near the town of Janos, in Chihuahua, and that one was killed and three others wounded, the panic-stricken survivors saving themselves by precipitate flight. I felt convinced that this villainy had been perpetrated by the Copper Mine Apaches, who had been so seemingly friendly with us, but could not substantiate the charge. Subsequent revelations satisfied me that my suspicions were well founded, for soon after our arrival at the Copper Mines Mr. Bartlett sounded Mangas Colorado on the subject, but he denied any knowledge whatever of the affair; yet two days afterward admitted that he knew about it, and said that it had been done by some bad young men over whom he had no control. An Apache is trained from his earliest infancy to regard all other people as his natural enemies. He is taught that the chief excellence of man is to outwit his fellows. He is made to feel that the highest honors are bestowed upon him who is master of the greatest amount of rascality. The favors of the women are lavished upon the most adroit thief, because his dexterity enables him to furnish a more copious supply to their wants and caprices. As