Subversive Historian – 10/15/08

The Death of Chief Victorio

One-hundred and eighteen years ago on this day in history, the Apache Chief Victorio died following a battle with Mexican Troops. On October 15th, 1880, Victorio and his men had been surrounded in the Tres Castillos Mountains in Mexico just south of El Paso, Texas. A military strategist and practitioner of hit and run guerrilla warfare tactics, Chief Victorio had fought the encroachments on his ancestral lands by both the Mexicans and White settlers. After successfully attacking and evading both t U.S. and Mexican armies, Victorio accepted a proposed settlement of his people on the Ojo Caliente reservation near his homeland in New Mexico. However, the U.S. Army forcefully relocated them to the extremely inhospitable San Carlos Reservation in Arizona. After the U.S. failed to uphold its agreements to provide allotments of food, Victorio and his band would ride again until his death.

Mexican troops are said to have killed the military leader, but Apache’s recount that Victorio died by taking his own life before his enemies could finish him.

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