Page:Life among the Apaches.djvu/61

From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search
This page has been validated.
55
LIFE AMONG THE APACHES.

Apache squaw, receiving kicks and blows as her reward. One old woman of the tribe, who had a tongue which made even the warriors quail, however, took a passing fancy for Inez, and from that time protected her from insult or harm so long as she remained among them. Her companions in captivity were subsequently purchased by a band of New Mexican traders, who took them off in a northerly direction. She never saw or heard of them afterwards. A second party had seen and purchased her, with the view of taking her to Santa Fe, for speculative and villainous purposes, when she was rescued by the Commission, every member of which vied with each other to extend their protection and care over this poor and suffering girl. Although she remained among us until her restoration to her parents and home, the sequel of her adventures will be given now.

On the morning of the 27th of August, exactly two months from the date of her rescue, the Commission left the Copper Mines, to prosecute its duties in the field, and as it had become necessary to visit Sonora again, Mr. Bartlett determined upon giving himself the gratification of restoring the fair Inez to the arms of her mourning mother. After many days' wandering, during which our small party was frequently reduced to only five or six, by reason of sending off occasional detachments, and after having lost our way and been forced to the necessity of living upon purslain and water for several successive days, we finally arrived near the town of Santa Cruz, on the 22d of September, nearly a month subsequent to leaving the Copper Mines. On the morning of the 23d, just one year to a day from the date of her capture, two men were dispatched to inform the family of Inez of her safety, and to add that she would be with her relations in four or five hours. About three miles