Part of our in-depth series exploring the forts of Comancheria
15 May 1883; Northwestern Chihuahua, Mexico: In the spring of 1883, Gen. George Crook organized an expedition to go deep into the Sierra Madre of Mexico and find the Apache bands of Geronimo, Nana, Loco, and Bonito. The force consisted of 42 men of Company I, 6th Cavalry; Companies A, B, D, E, F, and G, under Capt. Emmet Crawford, 3rd Cavalry, and Lts. James O. Mackay, 3rd Cavalry, and Charles B. Gatewood, 6th Cavalry; and 193 Chiricahua, White Mountain, Yuma, Mojave, and Tonto scouts. The White Mountain Apache Tzoe, or "Peaches," who had been on a recent raid with Chato, joined the expedition to guide them.
The command went up the Bavispe River, following the river's course into the mountains toward Cumbre. On 15 May, Crawford's Apache scouts, ahead of the cavalry, found Bonito's and Chato's village east of the river, across the Chihuahua border. They killed nine warriors and captured one woman, the daughter of Bonito, and four children, one the granddaughter of Cochise. According to the daughter of Apache chief Chihuahua, a warrior named Speedy grabbed the captive boy Charley McComas and crushed his head with a rock.
The army's victory deep in territory that the Apaches once considered a refuge convinced many Apaches to surrender over the next several days. Chiefs Nana, Loco, Ka-ya-ten-nae, Geronimo, and Naiche all turned themselves in; only Juh was missing. Crook marched 123 warriors and 251 women and children back to reservations in the United States.
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