Return to St. Augustine Genealogy Homepage


Letter about Apache Prisoners



From The Army & Navy Journal, June 19, 1886, p. 953


The following interesting letter was received by General Crook from Lieutenant Richards, 4th Cavalry, who conducted the Apache prisoners:


St. Augustine, Fla, June 8, 1886


I made the contents of your letter knows to Chihuahus, who was much pleased to see a "nalsus" (letter) from you. Maus sent me the Indians money which I distributed among them. They are now in camp on the North Beach, about 3 miles from town, and seem thoroughly contented and happy. In addition to their tents, they have brush "wicky ups" which gives the camp very much the same aspect as one should find on a trail. The Indians, as well as myself, regret being obliged to leave them. One of their children died on May 21. The mother insisted on using Indian medicine, but their ideas as to its efficiency are changing. I told them it would not work in this country...


From The Army & Navy Journal, September 25, 1886


The majority of the Indians, men, women and children sent from Arizona are now mainly at Ft. Marion, Florida, in charge of Colonel L. L. Langdon, U.S.A. Geronimo, Natchez, 19 bucks and 13 women and children are still at San Antonio where they will remain until President Cleveland, now returned to Washington, decides what disposition shall be made of them.


Capt. Dorst arrived at Ft. Marion Sept. 18 from Leavenworth with ten bucks, three squaws, and three interpreters, including Chato, a Chiracahua, Loco the head man of the Warm Spring Indians and the interpreter, Micky Free, a half-breed Mexican, White Concepcione, a pure Mexican, and Sam Bowman, a Cherokee half-breed. This party are under pay as Indian scouts, and form the delegation that recently went to Washington to petition the President that they should not be removed from their reservation. They appear resigned to their fate, but do not relish the change at all, and are averse to mingling with the other Apaches previously at Ft. Marion. Lieutenant Colonel J. F. Wade, 10th Cavalry, with Surgeon Cleary and Cos. E, 22nd Infantry, and K, 8th Infantry, arrived at Marion Sept. 20 with 381 Indians, ad turned them over to Colonel Langdon.


The Indians previously in Ft. Marion were brought there last spring. They are in number as follows: number of men married, 10; unmarried, 4; number of women whose husbands are with them, 12; number whose husbands are in the West, 20; children who are apparently under 14 -- male, 17; female, 8; number of half-grown youths, 2. To this should be added a female infant born Sept. 13, a daughter of one of the wives of Geronimo (Heronimo). This squaw has been a prisoner at St. Augustine since last April. Colonel Langdon, commanding the fort, has named the child Marion. It will be noticed there are ten men married and twelve women whose husbands are with them. The inference will naturally be drawn that some of the squaws do not have the whole of a husband.


The Indians are comfortably lodged in tents, floored and framed, and pitched on the terre-plain. They are frequently, almost daily, taken out to exercise on the outskirts of the town. Of course the presence in St. Augustine of these aborigines attract many people, who are naturally desirous of visiting them. Passes have been issued to a limited extent and under certain restrictions, but even with all the care exercised the number of applicants for permission to enter the fort has increased to such an extent as to be an inconvenience. Colonel Landgon does not believe these Indians were sent there for an exhibition, however willing some tourist may be to make them one, and has therefore directed that no more passes be granted to visit the Indians. As many people come from a distance for this purpose, to save them from disappointment hereafter an official notice has been published in the Florida papers that permits must not be expected by people visiting St. Augustine for that purpose.

Physicians In St Augustine