Page:Life among the Apaches.djvu/85

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79
LIFE AMONG THE APACHES.

visits of Apaches to American camps are always for sinister purposes. They have nothing to trade for: consequently, it is not barter that brings them. They beg, but in no wise comparably with other Indian tribes; and scarcely expect to receive when they ask. Their keen eyes omit nothing. One's arms and equipments, the number of your party, their cohesion and precaution, their course of march, their system of defence in case of attack, and the amount of plunder to be obtained with the least possible risk, are all noted and judged. Wherever their observations can be made from neighboring heights with a chance of successful ambush, the Apache never shows himself, nor gives any sign of his presence. Like the ground shark, one never knows he is there until one feels his bite. In nature and disposition, in habits, laws, manners and customs, in religion and ceremonies, in tribal and family organization, in language and signs, in war and in peace, he is totally different from all other Indians of the North American continent; and these facts will be set forth in future chapters, for the consideration of those who may peruse this work.