Apache

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Context of Apache

The Apache () are a group of culturally related Native American tribes in the Southwestern United States, which include the Chiricahua, Jicarilla, Lipan, Mescalero, Mimbreño, Ndendahe (Bedonkohe or Mogollon and Nednhi or Carrizaleño and Janero), Salinero, Plains (Kataka or Semat or "Kiowa-Apache") and Western Apache (Aravaipa, Pinaleño, Coyotero, Tonto). Distant cousins of the Apache are the Navajo, with whom they share the Southern Athabaskan languages. There are Apache communities in Oklahoma and Texas, and reservations in Arizona and New Mexico. Apache people have moved throughout the United States and elsewhere, including urban centers. The Apache Nations are politically autonomous, speak several different languages, and have distinct cultures.

Historically, the Apache homelands have consisted of high mountains, sheltered and watered valleys, deep canyons, deserts, and the southern Great Plains, including areas in what is...Read more

The Apache () are a group of culturally related Native American tribes in the Southwestern United States, which include the Chiricahua, Jicarilla, Lipan, Mescalero, Mimbreño, Ndendahe (Bedonkohe or Mogollon and Nednhi or Carrizaleño and Janero), Salinero, Plains (Kataka or Semat or "Kiowa-Apache") and Western Apache (Aravaipa, Pinaleño, Coyotero, Tonto). Distant cousins of the Apache are the Navajo, with whom they share the Southern Athabaskan languages. There are Apache communities in Oklahoma and Texas, and reservations in Arizona and New Mexico. Apache people have moved throughout the United States and elsewhere, including urban centers. The Apache Nations are politically autonomous, speak several different languages, and have distinct cultures.

Historically, the Apache homelands have consisted of high mountains, sheltered and watered valleys, deep canyons, deserts, and the southern Great Plains, including areas in what is now Eastern Arizona, Northern Mexico (Sonora and Chihuahua) and New Mexico, West Texas, and Southern Colorado. These areas are collectively known as Apacheria.

The Apache tribes fought the invading Spanish and Mexican peoples for centuries. The first Apache raids on Sonora appear to have taken place during the late 17th century. In 19th-century confrontations during the American-Indian wars, the U.S. Army found the Apache to be fierce warriors and skillful strategists.

More about Apache

Population, Area & Driving side
  • Population 111810
History
  • Entry into the Southwest
     
    Apache rawhide playing cards c. 1875–1885, collection of NMAI.

    The Apache and Navajo tribal groups of the North American Southwest speak related languages of the Athabaskan language family.[1] Other Athabaskan-speaking people in North America continue to reside in Alaska, western Canada, and the Northwest Pacific Coast.[1] Anthropological evidence suggests that the Apache and Navajo peoples lived in these same northern locales before migrating to the Southwest sometime between AD 1200 and 1500.[1]

    The Apaches' nomadic way of life complicates accurate dating, primarily because they constructed less substantial dwellings than other Southwestern groups.[2] Since the early 21st century, substantial progress has been made in dating and distinguishing their dwellings and other forms of material culture.[3] They left behind a more austere set of tools and material goods than other Southwestern cultures.[citation needed]

    ...Read more
    Entry into the Southwest
     
    Apache rawhide playing cards c. 1875–1885, collection of NMAI.

    The Apache and Navajo tribal groups of the North American Southwest speak related languages of the Athabaskan language family.[1] Other Athabaskan-speaking people in North America continue to reside in Alaska, western Canada, and the Northwest Pacific Coast.[1] Anthropological evidence suggests that the Apache and Navajo peoples lived in these same northern locales before migrating to the Southwest sometime between AD 1200 and 1500.[1]

    The Apaches' nomadic way of life complicates accurate dating, primarily because they constructed less substantial dwellings than other Southwestern groups.[2] Since the early 21st century, substantial progress has been made in dating and distinguishing their dwellings and other forms of material culture.[3] They left behind a more austere set of tools and material goods than other Southwestern cultures.[citation needed]

    The Athabaskan-speaking group probably moved into areas that were concurrently occupied or recently abandoned by other cultures. Other Athabaskan speakers, perhaps including the Southern Athabaskan, adapted many of their neighbors' technology and practices in their own cultures. Thus sites where early Southern Athabaskans may have lived are difficult to locate and even more difficult to firmly identify as culturally Southern Athabaskan. Recent advances have been made in the regard in the far southern portion of the American Southwest.[citation needed]

    There are several hypotheses about Apache migrations. One[who?] posits that they moved into the Southwest from the Great Plains. In the mid-16th century, these mobile groups lived in tents, hunted bison and other game, and used dogs to pull travois loaded with their possessions. Substantial numbers of the people and a wide range were recorded by the Spanish in the 16th century.[citation needed]

    In April 1541, while traveling on the plains east of the Pueblo region, Francisco Coronado referred to the people as "dog nomads." He wrote:

    After seventeen days of travel, I came upon a 'rancheria' of the Indians who follow these cattle (bison). These natives are called Querechos. They do not cultivate the land, but eat raw meat and drink the blood of the cattle they kill. They dress in the skins of the cattle, with which all the people in this land clothe themselves, and they have very well-constructed tents, made with tanned and greased cowhides, in which they live and which they take along as they follow the cattle. They have dogs which they load to carry their tents, poles, and belongings.[4]

     
    The Coronado Expedition, 1540–1542

    The Spanish described Plains dogs as very white, with black spots, and "not much larger than water spaniels."[5] Plains dogs were slightly smaller than those used for hauling loads by modern Inuit and northern First Nations people in Canada. Recent experiments show these dogs may have pulled loads up to 50 lb (20 kg) on long trips, at rates as high as two or three miles per hour (3 to 5 km/h).[5] The Plains migration theory associates the Apache peoples with the Dismal River culture, an archaeological culture known primarily from ceramics and house remains, dated 1675–1725, which has been excavated in Nebraska, eastern Colorado, and western Kansas.[citation needed]

    Although the first documentary sources mention the Apache, and historians have suggested some passages indicate a 16th-century entry from the north, archaeological data indicate they were present on the plains long before this first reported contact.[citation needed]

    A competing theory[who?] posits their migration south, through the Rocky Mountains, ultimately reaching the American Southwest by the 14th century or perhaps earlier. An archaeological material culture assemblage identified in this mountainous zone as ancestral Apache has been referred to as the "Cerro Rojo complex".[6] This theory does not preclude arrival via a plains route as well, perhaps concurrently, but to date the earliest evidence has been found in the mountainous Southwest.[citation needed] The Plains Apache have a significant Southern Plains cultural influence.

    When the Spanish arrived in the area, trade between the long established Pueblo peoples and the Southern Athabaskan was well established. They reported the Pueblo exchanged maize and woven cotton goods for bison meat, and hides and materials for stone tools. Coronado observed the Plains people wintering near the Pueblo in established camps. Later Spanish sovereignty over the area disrupted trade between the Pueblo and the diverging Apache and Navajo groups. The Apache quickly acquired horses, improving their mobility for quick raids on settlements. In addition, the Pueblo were forced to work Spanish mission lands and care for mission flocks; they had fewer surplus goods to trade with their neighbors.[7]

    In 1540, Coronado reported that the modern Western Apache area was uninhabited, although some scholars have argued that he simply did not see the American Indians. Other Spanish explorers first mention "Querechos" living west of the Rio Grande in the 1580s. To some historians, this implies the Apaches moved into their current Southwestern homelands in the late 16th and early 17th centuries. Other historians note that Coronado reported that Pueblo women and children had often been evacuated by the time his party attacked their dwellings, and that he saw some dwellings had been recently abandoned as he moved up the Rio Grande. This might indicate the semi-nomadic Southern Athabaskan had advance warning about his hostile approach and evaded encounter with the Spanish. Archaeologists are finding ample evidence of an early proto-Apache presence in the Southwestern mountain zone in the 15th century and perhaps earlier. The Apache presence on both the Plains and in the mountainous Southwest indicate that the people took multiple early migration routes.[citation needed]

    Conflict with Mexico and the United States

    In general, the recently arrived Spanish colonists, who settled in villages, and Apache bands developed a pattern of interaction over a few centuries. Both raided and traded with each other. Records of the period seem to indicate that relationships depended on the specific villages and bands: a band might be friends with one village and raid another. When war occurred, the Spanish would send troops; after a battle both sides would "sign a treaty" and go home.

     
    Geronimo

    The traditional and sometimes treacherous relationships continued after the independence of Mexico in 1821. By 1835 Mexico had placed a bounty on Apache scalps (see scalping), but certain villages still traded with some bands. When Juan José Compà, the leader of the Copper Mines Mimbreño Apaches, was killed for bounty money in 1837, Mangas Coloradas (Red Sleeves) or Dasoda-hae (He just sits there) became the principal chief and war leader; also in 1837 Soldado Fiero (a.k.a. Fuerte), leader of the Warm Springs Mimbreño Apaches, was killed by Mexican soldiers near Janos, and his son Cuchillo Negro (Black Knife) became the principal chief and war leader. They (being now Mangas Coloradas the first chief and Cuchillo Negro the second chief of the whole Tchihende or Mimbreño people) conducted a series of retaliatory raids against the Mexicans. By 1856, authorities in horse-rich Durango would claim that Indian raids (mostly Comanche and Apache) in their state had taken nearly 6,000 lives, abducted 748 people, and forced the abandonment of 358 settlements over the previous 20 years.[8]

    When the United States went to war against Mexico in 1846, many Apache bands promised U.S. soldiers safe passage through their lands. When the U.S. claimed former territories of Mexico in 1846, Mangas Coloradas signed a peace treaty with the nation, respecting them as conquerors of the Mexicans' land. An uneasy peace with U.S. citizens held until the 1850s. An influx of gold miners into the Santa Rita Mountains led to conflict with the Apache. This period is sometimes called the Apache Wars.

    United States' concept of a reservation had not been used by the Spanish, Mexicans or other Apache neighbors before. Reservations were often badly managed, and bands that had no kinship relationships were forced to live together. No fences existed to keep people in or out. It was common for a band to be allowed to leave for a short period of time. Other times a band would leave without permission, to raid, return to their homeland to forage, or to simply get away. The U.S. military usually had forts nearby to keep the bands on the reservations by finding and returning those who left. The reservation policies of the U.S. caused conflict and war with the various Apache bands who left the reservations for almost another quarter century.

    War between the Apache peoples and Euro-Americans has led to a stereotypical focus on certain aspects of Apache cultures. These have often been distorted through misunderstanding of their cultures, as noted by anthropologist Keith Basso:

    Of the hundreds of peoples that lived and flourished in native North America, few have been so consistently misrepresented as the Apacheans of Arizona and New Mexico. Glorified by novelists, sensationalized by historians, and distorted beyond credulity by commercial film makers, the popular image of 'the Apache' — a brutish, terrifying semi-human bent upon wanton death and destruction — is almost entirely a product of irresponsible caricature and exaggeration. Indeed, there can be little doubt that the Apache has been transformed from a native American into an American legend, the fanciful and fallacious creation of a non-Indian citizenry whose inability to recognize the massive treachery of ethnic and cultural stereotypes has been matched only by its willingness to sustain and inflate them.[9]

    Forced removal

    In 1875, United States military forced the removal of an estimated 1500 Yavapai and Dilzhe'e Apache (better known as Tonto Apache) from the Rio Verde Indian Reserve and its several thousand acres of treaty lands promised to them by the United States government. At the orders of Indian Commissioner L.E. Dudley, U.S. Army troops made the people, young and old, walk through winter-flooded rivers, mountain passes and narrow canyon trails to get to the Indian Agency at San Carlos, 180 miles (290 km) away. The trek killed several hundred people. The people were interned there for 25 years while white settlers took over their land. Only a few hundred ever returned to their lands. At the San Carlos reservation, the Buffalo soldiers of the 9th Cavalry Regiment—replacing the 8th Cavalry who were being stationed to Texas—guarded the Apaches from 1875 to 1881.[10]

    Beginning in 1879, an Apache uprising against the reservation system led to Victorio's War between Chief Victorio's band of Apaches and the 9th Cavalry.

    Defeat

    Most United States' histories of this era report that the final defeat of an Apache band took place when 5,000 US troops forced Geronimo's group of 30 to 50 men, women and children to surrender on September 4, 1886, at Skeleton Canyon, Arizona.[11] The Army sent this band and the Chiricahua scouts who had tracked them to military confinement in Florida at Fort Pickens and, subsequently, Ft. Sill, Oklahoma.

    Many books were written on the stories of hunting and trapping during the late 19th century. Many of these stories involve Apache raids and the failure of agreements with Americans and Mexicans. In the post-war era, the US government arranged for Apache children to be taken from their families for adoption by white Americans in assimilation programs.[12]

    ^ a b c Roberts, Susan A.; Roberts, Calvin A. (1998). A History of New Mexico. Albuquerque, NM: University of New Mexico Press. pp. 48–49. ISBN 0-8263-1792-8. ^ Cordell, p. 148 ^ Seymour 2004, 2009 a, 2009 b, 2010 ^ Hammond and Rey ^ a b Henderson ^ Seymour 2004, 2009b, 2010 ^ Cordell, p. 151 ^ DeLay, Brian, The War of a Thousand Deserts. New Haven: Yale U Press, 2008, p.298 ^ Basso, p. 462 ^ Schubert, Frank N. (1997). Black Valor: Buffalo Soldiers and the Medal of Honor, 1870-1898. Scholarly Resources Inc. pp. 41, 42. ISBN 9780842025867. ^ Miles, page 526 ^ "Stephanie Woodward, "Native Americans Expose the Adoption Era and Repair Its Devastation", Indian Country Today Media Network, Retrieved 3 March 2013.
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