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Miles, Nelson Appleton, 1839-1925 / Personal recollections and observations of General Nelson A. Miles embracing a brief view of the Civil War, or, From New England to the Golden Gate: and the story of his Indian campaigns, with comments on the exploration, development and progress of our great western empire
(1896)

Chapter XXXVII. The Arizona campaign. (I),   pp. 480-493 PDF (5.5 MB)


Page 480


PERSONAL RECOLLECTIONS OF
                          CHAPTER XXXVII.
                      THE ARIZONA CAMPAIGN. ( 1.)
PROBLEM PRESENTED BY THE SITUATION   OPIvNION-S OF CITIZEN-S-TIE OBSTACLES
To SLiCCESS
   PRESENTED BY TIlE NATI RAL CONDITIO-N-S-AID FROM TIlE SIGNAL CORPS AT
VA,',S11INTG-
      TON -TTIII Hl1TIOSTAT--RRAREANGEMIENT OF STATIONS-NNUBAIER OF MAISSAGE£S
SE.NT-
         DISTRICTS OF OBSERVATION -CAPTAIN LAWTON - CAPTAIN     WOOD -
            OTHER OFFICERS OF TIlE COMMAND-BREAKING OUT OF HOSTILES
               -DETAILS OF T1lE CAMPAIGN AGAINST TIlE APACHES.
UCH being the circumstances the problem that presented itself
to me was this: There were forty thousand Indians in New
Mexico and Arizona the main portion of whom were peace-
able and well disposed, yet in nearly all the different tribes
there wxere disaffected and turbuleiit elements ready to assumile
hostilities if an opportunity occurred, or if the hostiles then
at large were not brought under control. Over a vast area of
country of rugged mountains and narrow valleys, with water
            only at scattered points and ditticult to lind and ob.tain,
roamed one of the miost desperate, cruel and hardy bands of outlaws that
ever infested any country. who were to be hunted down and captured. A
few crim-inals will keep the entire police force of the great city of London
occupied ; and, as a matter of fact, it has always beeu fouiid iiiost difficult
to arrest the leaders in any particular field of criiiie.
   The mountain labyrinths of the Apaches mnay le collmpared to the
criminal dens and slums of London, though on an immensely greater scale,
and the outlaws to be tracked aiid subdued, for cunning, strength and
ferocity have never been surpassed in the annals of either savage or civil-
ized crimne. A band of lndians that had roamed over that country for gen-
erations believed themselves to be iiasters and unconquerable, and nlany
of the white people living in that country also believed it to be imnpossible
to run themn downi and capture theiii. I was advised by many well-ini-
fornied people of the uselessness of undertaking to subjugate the hostiles
as, they stated, it had been tried for so many years without success.
"Those Indians could go over mountain country better than white men;
"
"they could signal from one mountain range to another;" "they
could
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