Sunday, July 22


While visiting with my dear friends Inky and Raven on Wednesday they mentioned that they hoped to go camping in the Chiricahua Mountains this weekend.

I decided to surprise them.

The Chiricahua Mountains are named after a group of Apache Native Americans who live in the Southwest United States. At one time they were living on 15 million acres of territory in southwestern New Mexico and southeastern Arizona in the United States, and in northern Mexico.

The most well-known warrior leader of the Chiricahua Apache, although he was not considered a chief, was Geronimo.

After an 1858 attack by a company of Mexican soldiers killed his mother, wife and three children, Geronimo joined revenge attacks on the Mexicans. During his career as a war chief, he was notorious for consistently urging raids upon Mexican Provinces and their towns, and later against American locations across Arizona, New Mexico and western Texas. He made a stronghold in the Chiricahua Mountains, part of which is now inside Chiricahua National Monument.

In 1886 Geronimo surrendered to U.S. authorities after a lengthy pursuit. As a prisoner of war in old age he became a celebrity and appeared in fairs but was never allowed to return to the land of his birth. He later regretted his surrender and claimed the conditions he made had been ignored. Geronimo died in 1909 from complications of pneumonia at Fort Sill, Okla.

Today, only two branches of the Chiricahua are federally recognized as independent units: the Fort Sill Apache Tribe, located near Apache, Okla.; and the Chiricahua tribe located on the Mescalero Apache reservation near Ruidoso, N.M.

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