Geronimo by Gary Saderup
Geronimo (Mescalero-Chiricahua: Goyaa?é [kòjà????] "the one who yawns"; June 16, 1829 – February 17, 1909) was a prominent leader and medicine man from the Bedonkohe band of the Chiricahua Apache tribe. From 1850 to 1886 Geronimo joined with members of three other Chiricahua Apache bands—the Tchihende, the Tsokanende and the Nednhi—to carry out numerous raids as well as resistance to US and Mexican military campaigns in the northern Mexico states of Chihuahua and Sonora, and in the southwestern American territories of New Mexico and Arizona. Geronimo's raids and related combat actions were a part of the prolonged period of the Apache-United States conflict, that started with American settlement in Apache lands following the end of the war with Mexico in 1848.
While well known, Geronimo was not a chief among the Chiricahua or the Bedonkohe band. At any one time, about 30 to 50 Apaches would be following him. However, since he was a superb leader in raiding and warfare he frequently led large numbers of men and women beyond his own following.