War of the Rebellion: Serial 021 Page 0229 Chapter XXVII. INDIANS IN NEW MEXICO.

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March 22.-On the afternoon of March 22 the Gila Apaches made a descent upon the public her which was grazing near Fort West and succeeded in running off some 60 head of horses; Indians numbered

-. At 8 o'clock p.m. the gallant Major William McCleave, First Cavalry California Volunteers, started in pursuit with a command consisting of Lieutenants French and Latimer, First Cavalry, California Volunteers, 40 men of Company A, 25 men of Company b, and 14 men of Company C, First Cavalry, California Volunteers. Major McCleave followed trail of Indians in a westerly course about 70 miles and down the Gila 5 miles, then across a divide to Rio Negro, where he arrived at 9 a.m. on the 26th, and then moved up the stream a short distance. Signs at this point indicated the close proximity of Indians and a rancheria. During twilight command moved up the stream 2 miles and made camp. Thirty men were mounted on only serviceable animals left, under Lieutenant Latimer, and 30 dismounted, under Major McCleave, started in search of rancheria, leaving remainder of command with Lieutenant French in charge of broken-down animals, pack animals, provisions, &c. Leaving the camp at 8 o'clock p.m. the command ascended a mountain on west side of stream and traveled about 12 miles without meeting with any success; here command rested from 1 o'clock of the 27th until dawn of day, it raining all the time. When light enough to see Major McCleave discovered from an elevated position trees, which indicated that the rancheria was near by. Lieutenant Latimer was ordered ahead with his command; discovered rancheria and gallantly charged upon it. Part of the dismounted men immediately commenced gathering in and guarding the horses to prevent the escape of the Indians, while the others were skirmishing and fighting on the bluffs. The fight lasted for twenty minutes, and resulted in the complete routing of the Indians, the capture of all our own horses that could be found and many Indian horses, the killing of 25 Indians, and the complete destruction of the rancheria, provisions, and all they possessed. Private [James] Hall, of Company B, First Cavalry, California Volunteers, was wounded in this fight. The command then returned to camp, and soon after noon started on return trip by a route supposed more direct than the one by which the Indians were followed from the fort. This route led up a canon from sides of which the Indians attacked rear guard of command, wounding Lieutenant French, killing 2 horses and wounding 1. As soon as the attack was made the soldiers ascended the perpendicular walls of the canon by climbing one over the other. This was done amidst showers of arrows. As soon as they reached the top the Indians fled in every direction. The superiority of the Californians over the Apaches at their own style of fighting was shown in the case of Corporal [Charles E.] Ellis, of Company A, who crawled unseen to a rock behind which was an Indian, and giving a short cough the Indian raised his head to discover its cause when a bullet from Ellis' rifle dashed through his brain. The Indians lost in this attack 3 killed. On the 30th, provisions giving out, a sergeant and 5 men were sent to the fort a supply. Until their return the party subsisted on horse flesh. On the 4th of April the command reached fort. On 5th Private Hall died from wounds received in the fight. Indian loss, 28 killed; troops, 1.

March 24.-Major Morrison, with Captain [A. H.] Pfeiffer's company, New Mexico Volunteers, en route from Fort Stanton to Fort McRae, at San Nicolas Spring came upon a wounded Mexican, who stated he belonged to a train belonging to Martin Lujan, of Socorro, Tex.; that the train