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melons, beans, mescrew, piñon nuts, and fish to a limited extent. They did not practice irrigation, but relied on the inundation of the bottom lands to supply the needed moisture, hence when there was no overflow their crops failed. Articles of skin and bone were very little used, materials such as the inner bark of the willow, vegetable fiber, etc., taking their place. Pottery was manufactured. Baskets were in common use, but were obtained from other tribes.
The tribal organization was loose, though, as a whole, the Mohave remained quite distinct from other tribes. The chieftainship was hereditary in the male line. Their dead were cremated. The population of the tribe in 1775–76 was conservatively estimated by Garces at 3,000, and by Leroux about 1834, to be 4,000; but the latter is probably an overestimate. Their number in 1905 was officially given as 1,589, of whom 508 were under the Colorado river school superintendent, 856 under the Fort Mohave school superintendent, 50 under the San Carlos agency, and about 175 at Camp McDowell, on the Rio Verde. Those at the latter two points, however, are apparently Yavapai, commonly known as Apache-Mohave.
No treaty was made with the Mohave respecting their original territory, the United States assuming title thereto. By act of March 3rd, 1865, supplemented by Executive orders of November 22d, 1873, November 16th, 1874, and May 15th, 1876, the present Colorado river reservation, Arizona, occupied by Mohave, Chemehuevi and Kawia, was established.
Wherever the whites came into close contact with the Indians, the demoralization of the tribe surely followed. This was the case with the Yumas and also with the Mohaves. The Mohaves, when first discovered by the Catholic priests, were a cheerful, friendly, splendid race of men.
To the early explorers, Lieutenant Ives in particular, they were of great benefit. Their great chief at that time, Iretaba, who, from all accounts, was a splendid specimen of the untutored savage, was especially friendly to Ives. He was sent to Washington and was so impressed with the greatness of our nation that his constant endeavor during the rest of his life was to keep the Mohaves from warring against the whites.
The first reservation set aside for the Indians, after the organization of the Territory, was, as we have seen, for the Mohaves, and the first fort built in northern Arizona was Fort Mohave in the heart of the Mohave nation. The Indian agents robbed them, and the tribe became completely demoralized. For a long time, up to the time of which we are now writing, 1869 and 1870, they pretended friendship to the whites, but oftentimes in their forays, committed all kinds of crimes. According to Mike Burns, it was the Mohaves who committed the Oatman massacre, charging it to the Tontos. They raided King Woolsey's ranch and drove off several thousand dollars worth of stock.
They seem, in common with the other Yuman tribes, to have had no legends of any particular kind. They all, however, believed in a Great
Spirit, a controller of the Universe, and, it is said, were Sun worshippers. The Medicine men, it seems, did not exercise so great power among these tribes as they did among the Apaches.
The Mohaves now, with the exception of a few around Ehrenberg, are doing remarkably well. In some succeeding volume it will be interesting to note their progress at the Indian schools, in common with other Indian tribes.
The Apache-Mohaves, or, as they are sometimes called, Yavapais, (Sun-people), are a branch of the Mohave tribe, which, according to Mike Burns, separated from the river Indians, as did the Maricopas from the Yumas. When this separation took place is not known. Their range extended from Bill Williams' Fork as far south as Castle Dome and east to the Superstition Mountains, in and around Phoenix. They are described as tall, erect, muscular and well proportioned, the women being stouter and having more handsome faces than the Yumas.
This tribe was at war with the whites, and gave them as much trouble as any other band of Indians, hardly excepting that of Cochise. Their raids extended from the Superstition Mountains around McDowell, and west beyond Prescott and Wickenburg, and even, it is said, as far south as Sentinel. The Battle of the Caves, a description of which will be given in a succeeding volume, broke the power of this tribe, and the remnants gathered upon the Verde reservation. Most of them, in latter days, drifted back to their old hunting grounds, the