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all through the camps, and family after family died. General Crook's favorite chief, Chemasella, died, and the whole camp turned out and killed eight women and four men.
This created much confusion and the soldiers had to come in and stop the slaughtering of the innocents. The soldiers arrested some of the chiefs and the military interpreter for not informing them of the condition of affairs, and took them down to Camp Verde and put them in the guard house. Many of the Indians died of chills and fever, and other causes, and the medicine men blamed the evil spirited women, and many women and men were killed. From that day to this the singing by a medicine man or woman over a sick Apache has been stopped.”
If, however, an Apache allowed his aged parents to suffer for food or shelter; if he had neglected or abused the sick; if he had profaned their religion, or had been unfaithful, he might be banished from the tribe. The medicine man was, perhaps, the most influential person in every tribe. The chiefs led their bands in war, but the medicine man was the arbiter. He consulted the fates and every revelation came to him from Usen as to whether they should go upon any expedition; how they should be equipped, etc.
They had a firm belief in the merits of hoddentin, a flour made from the pollen of the tule. This, according to Bourke, was carried by every warrior on every expedition as a protection. A small sack of it was given to every child born into the tribe. It was used in their incantations to the sun, to the moon and to the stars.
It was believed that this hoddentin, scattered along the face of the heavens, formed the Milky Way. It was used to a very great extent in all their ceremonials.
Bourke, in the Annual Report of the Bureau of Ethnology, of the Smithsonian Institute, for the years 1887–88, gives a very elaborate and succinct account of some of the Apache Dances, their customs, etc., but confesses that he has been unable to obtain anything much as to their religious beliefs. They never scalped th enemies, and they buried their dead in the crevices of the rocks, far away from human eye.
Captain Bourke's description of the dances follows:
“The spirit dance is called 'cha-ja-la.' I have seen this dance a number of times, but will confine my description to one seen at Fort Marion (St. Augustine, Fla.), in 1887, when the Chiricahua Apaches were confined there as prisoners. A great many of the band had been suffering from sickness of one kind or another and twenty-three of the children had died; as a consequence, the medicine-men were having the Cha-ja-la, which is entered into only upon the most solemn occasions, such as the setting out of a war party, the appearance of an epidemic, or something else of like portent. On the terreplein of the northwest bastion, Ramon, the old medicine-man, was violently beating upon a drum, which, as usual, had been improvised of a soaped rag drawn tightly over the mouth of an iron kettle, holding a little water.
“Although acting as master of ceremonies, Ramon was not painted or decorated in any way.
Three other medicine-men were having the finishing touches put to their bodily decoration. They had an under-coating of greenish brown, and on each arm a yellow snake, the head toward the shoulder blade. The snake on the arm of one of the party was double-headed, or rather had a head at each extremity.
'Each had insignia in yellow on back and breast, but no two were exactly alike. One had on his breast a yellow bear, four inches long by three inches high, and on his back a kan of the same color and dimensions. A second had the same pattern of bear on his breast, but a zigzag for lightning on his back. The third had the zigzag on both back and breast. All wore kilts and moccasins.
“While the painting was going on Ramon thumped and sang with vigor to insure the medicinal potency of the pigments and the designs to which they were applied. Each held, one in each hand, two wands or swords of lathlike proportions, ornamented with snake-lightning in blue.
“The medicine-men emitted a peculiar whistling noise and bent slowly to the right, then to the left, then frontward, then backward, until the head in each case was level with the waist. Quickly they spun around in full circle on the left foot; back again in a reverse circle to the right; then they charged around the little group of tents in that bastion, making cuts and thrusts with their wands to drive the maleficent spirits away.
“It recalled to my mind the old myths of the angel with the flaming sword guarding the en