- A famous medicine man, prophet, and chief of the Chiricahua apache.
His true name was Goyathlay, "One Who Yawns," but he was called
Geronimo from the Spanish for Jerome.
Geronimo was born about 1834 near old Fort
Tularosa at the headwaters of the Gila River in New Mexico. In 1876
he and some younger chiefs fled to Mexico with their followers when
the Government wanted to move the Apache to San Carlos, Arizona.
Later Geronimo and his band were arrested
and settled at San Carlos. But when the Government failed to help
them irrigate their lands the Indians became discontented. Geronimo
went on the warpath, but once more surrendered. Two years later,
however, in 1884, he gathered a band of hostile Indians and raided white
settlements in Arizona and new mexico, as well as in Sonora and Chihuahua
in Mexico. This revolt was prompted by the Government's attempts
to stop the Indians from making tiswin, an intoxicating drink.
General George A. Cook began a campaign
with instructions to capture or destroy the chief and his followers.
In march, 1886, Geronimo agreed to a truce, but this was violated by the
Indians and they once again fled across the border. General nelson
A. Miles now took up the fight and finally in August Geronimo surrendered.
he and his entire band of 340 were sent as prisoners of war to Florida.
The old chief worked at hard labor for four years until he and the other
prisoners were settled at Fort Sill, Oklahoma.
Geronimo, who had raided and killed for
forty years and whose history was one of blood and pillage, died peacefully,
a Christian in 1909.
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