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McAteer at the north corner, and the little soldier, whose name is unknown, at the south corner, and J. J. Buckman lay on his back inside the enclosure. The boy, with Poindexter and Ed May, finally got inside of the cabin and shut the door. McAteer set up a rock about eight or ten inches high and six inches thick, and lay so that when he shot that guarded his head.
There was a clump of bushes about two hundred yards from the cabin, and all day long McAteer was shooting into that clump of bushes, but as fast as he picked one man off, another took his place. The Indians had a Henry rifle.
Poindexter and May had guns which had defective sights so that they could not shoot well, and they loaded guns for Thad Buckman, and he would do the shooting. They would hoist him up to a loophole, and he would shoot from the inside of the cabin.
The little soldier of the 14th Infantry was shooting to the south all day, and keeping the force of Indians on that side from joining the others. The Indians were shooting at the cabin from three or four different points, and this meant keeping the fight up all day long against the whole tribe of Wallapais, of whom there were more than a hundred. There was one big Indian on a black horse riding back and forth, giving orders, and the little soldier said: “I believe I can get that fellow," and McAteer said: “Do it.” The little soldier raised his sights, shot at the big chief, and dropped him.
They kept that up all day long, and next morning a train going into Prescott came along, and the Indians scattered.
Mr. Kelly also gave the following description of the fight between Mint Valley and Skull Valley.
There was a six mule team, driven by Joe Phy who was absolutely fearless. He had one escort with him by the name of McNulty. They were coming into Prescott, loaded with supplies, and had reached about where the hill known as Woolsey's Hill is. The Indians charged them and told Joe that if he would go off and leave his team and the supplies, they would let him go. Joe took one of the lead mules, put McNulty on it, and sent him back to Skull Valley. Joe took the other lead mule, and hitched him to the back of the wagon, and held the Indians off until McNulty had gone to Skull Valley and brought back help, and when the Indians saw them coming, they dispersed. He must have kept up the fight for three or four hours. The date of this fight is somewhat in doubt, but it occurred in 1864 or 1865.
Joe Phy was afterwards killed in a personal encounter with Pete Gabriel in Florence. His name will appear frequently in this history.
Fish's manuscript gives the following account of the fight with the Indians, known as the “Battle Flat” fight. Fish says that this account was taken from a manuscript shown him by Judge Brooks in Prescott in 1900, giving the vhole details of the fight. It varies somewhat from the account given by Hamilton in his work, “The Resources of Arizona," and I am of the opinion that it is the true version, for the reason that it was taken from an original manuscript owned by Judge Brooks, whom all settlers in Prescott will remember as reliable in all respects. The account is as follows:
“In the latter part of May, 1864, Stewart Wall, Frank Binckley, DeMorgan Scott, Samuel Herron and Fred Henry, started from Walnut Grove on a prospecting trip. They took three pack animals and a good supply of provisions. They took their time passing the Hassayampa and Turkey Creek, and camped on the 2nd of June on what has since been known as 'Battle Flat.' About two hours before daylight the next morning they were attacked by a large body of Indians. The Indians would, doubtless, have waited until daylight, but one of the boys raising up, led them to believe that they were getting up. Every man was wounded and two of the horses killed before daylight. There was a continuous shower of arrows coming from the enemy, who were all around in fearful odds, and the boys were driven from their camp, taking up their position some three hundred yards away where they were still surrounded by the foe. The Indians took possession of the camp and made a breakfast upon the two dead horses. The boys found themselves in a terrible condition-all wounded and some of them in a frightful manner. Henry was wounded in the arm, but his legs were all right, so it was decided that he should break through the enemy's line and go for help. He took Frank Binckley, who had a ball through the bridge of his nose which drove a bone into an eye putting it out, with him. It was feared that Binckley would go insane if left. The two attempted, at about eleven o'clock in the forenoon, to crawl through the brush, but were soon discovered, and a running fight was
then kept up for some distance. The men took a circuitous route to avoid being ambushed and to have the advantage in the ground. The party being aroused from their beds so suddenly, and in warm weather, had but little on, and these two wounded men made the run through the mountains from eleven a. m. until eight a. m. the next morning, barefooted. When they reached Walnut Grove a company of ten men soon started out and found the other boys, who had fought the Indians until in the forenoon, when the hostiles left, probably thinking that the game was not worth the cost. The boys were all taken in and all recovered but Sam Herron, who died nine days after."
The following account of the killing of George W. Leihy, Indian Agent, is taken from Hamiltons' “Resources of Arizona":
“Hon. G. W. Leihy was the Indian Agent at La Paz, and had the utmost confidence in those under his charge. Though warned that he had offended some of them and should be on his guard or they would kill him, he laughed at his advisers and would go about the country alone and unarmed. He made a visit to Prescott either in the fall of 1865 or 1866 with only one companion. About ten miles below Skull Valley the road passes for more than a mile through a rocky defile, where, in 1864, two prospectors named Bell and Sage were killed by Indianshence the name, Bell's Canyon. On his return from Prescott, Leihy and his friend were waylaid and killed in Bell's Canyon by his own wards, and their bodies horribly mangled. His murderers at once returned to the reservation and spread the news, whereupon for two days
and nights there was great rejoicing among the tribe. Horses were killed and eaten, as was their custom on their days of feasting or celebration, and the residents of the town of La Paz wondered what the occasion was, until informed by some squaws that Leihy was killed, a statement soon confirmed by the next traveller over the road."
The Indian account, by Mike Burns, of the killing of Agent Leihy, is given in a preceding volume.
In September, 1865, Fort McDowell was established, with five companies of California Volunteers, as a point from which to operate against the Indians of the neighboring mountains. The post was situated on the west bank of the Rio Verde, about eight miles from its junction with the Salt River, and is about eighteen hundred feet above sea level. The sickly place called Camp Date Creek, about sixty-five miles southwest from Prescott, was first established as Camp McPherson in 1866, the name being changed in November, 1868. It afforded considerable protection to travellers between Prescott and the Colorado River.
The killing of Agent Leihy and his companion was entirely due to his own negligence. He had been warned not to travel without a sufficiently large escort, but wilfully disregarded the warning, and paid the penalty of his carelessness. Another instance of this negligence or carelessness resulted in the killing of Doctor Tappan in 1866. Dr. Tappan was escorted by Major Miller of the 14th U. S. Infantry. Major Miller said there were no Indians, but the party was waylaid in a canyon called Round Valley while