Geronimo  {jur-ahn'-i-moh}, or Goyathlay (`one who yawns,' and Spanish for Geronimo,) was  reportedly given the famous name  by Mexican soldiers, although few agree as to why. He was born in No-doyohn Canon, Arizona  on June 16, 1829,  son of Tablishim and Juana of the Bedonkohe band of the Apache along the Gila River (in present-day Arizona). He was the  fourth child of eight children (4 boys and 4 girls).He married  Alope of the Chiricauhua Apache and had three children.
On March 5, 1858, while  on a trading expedition, Geronimo's camp  was attacked by  Sonoran soldiers led by Colonel Jose Maria Carrasco. Geronimo's wife,children, and mother were killed.  Thus, this  incident sparked a life-long hatred of  white men. Geronimo was married  several more times  in his life and had additional children.  

Between 1858 and 1886, Geronimo raided and fought against Mexican and US forces.  The Chiricahua Apache were forcibly moved to the San Carlos reservation in eastern Arizona in 1876.  Geronimo raided into Mexico but was soon arrested and returned to San Carlos.

After a few years of peace, an Apache prophet was murdered.   Again, Geronimo raided across Arizona, New Mexico, and northern Mexico from a secret camp in the Sierra Madre Mountains. 

Captured in May 1882 by the US army,  Geronimo  agreed to return to the reservation and  lived there as a farmer. After the sudden arrest of the warrior Ka-ya-ten-nae,  Geronimo  successfully operated against US forces until scouts infiltrated their base in January 1886. Cornered, much of Geronimo's band surrendered to General George Crook on March 25, 1886.  Many times did Geronimo escape and was recaptured. The noble warrior was placed in  Fort Pickens in Pensacola, as a prisoner, while the other Chiricahua went to Fort Marion.
In prison, Geronimo was put to work every day   sawing up large logs. For nearly two years they  were kept at hard labor and  did not see our families until May, 1887. Later, they were reunited with his family and transferred to Vermont, then   to Mount Vernon Barracks in Alabama, where we stayed five years and worked for the Government. 

In 1892, he was relocated to  Fort Sill, Oklahoma, along with his brother Porico, and  sister, Nah-da-ste.  Though a prisoner,  Geronimo became a popular celebrity and had commanding performances in Omaha and  Buffalo. A year  after  the 1904 World's Fair  he rode in President Theodore Roosevelt's inaugural parade. 

This was not  Indian Chief's first Fair, as the man became a seasoned showman. He had previously appeared at the Pan-American Exposition in 1901, and even earlier he was paraded at the 1898 Trans-Mississippi and International Exposition in Omaha, Nebraska. 

 Geronimo was asked to attend the St. Louis World's Fair,  A    he did  not wish to go. Later, when he  was told that he would receive good attention and protection, and that the President of the United States informed him that it would be all right; Geronimo consented.  He was kept by parties in charge of the Indian Department, who had obtained permission from the President. 

Geronimo  lived in the Apache Village at the Fair for  for six  months.  He sold  photographs for twenty-five cents, and was  allowed to keep ten cents from each sale.  He also signed autographs for  ten, fifteen, or twenty-five cents, as the case might be, and kept all of that money.  By August, he doubled his fee. On occasion, Geronimo would sell his hat for five dollars.

He sang many Apache war songs and  played the fiddle  (violin). 

He also participated in a U. S. Department of Interior Indian anthropological exhibit.

The United States Government forbade Geronimo from wearing seremonial dress, because it caused him distress.

Many people in St. Louis invited Geronimo  to come to their homes, but his  `keeper' always refused. Every Sunday the President of the Fair sent the 74 year-old chief to go to the  Wild West Show, where he took part in  roping contests. Geronimo saw  many other Indian tribes there, and strange people of whom he  had never heard.  Geronimo left the Fair with more money than he had ever had, yet he still had to be returned back to Fort Sill. On many occasions, 

"I am glad I went to the Fair. I saw many interesting things and learned much of the white people. They are a very kind and peaceful people. During all the time I was at the Fair no one tried to harm me in any way. Had this been among the Mexicans, I am sure I should have been compelled to defend myself often.  I wish all my people could have attended the Fair."
---Geronimo quote----

​After the 1904 World’s Fair Geronimo briefly joined Pawnee Bill’s Wild West show (again, with the permission of the U. S. government, since he was still technically a prisoner of war). Geronimo’s act, never mind that Apaches were not buffalo hunters like the Plains Indians, was to shoot a buffalo from a moving automobile. In a move reminiscent of Barnum, Pawnee Bill billed Geronimo for this performance as “The Worst Indian That Ever Lived.”

During  his many wars with the Mexicans, Geronimo   received eight wounds: he was shot in the right leg above the knee, and he carried the bullet to his death; he was shot through the left forearm; wounded in the right leg below the knee with a saber; wounded on top of the head with the butt of a musket; shot just below the outer corner of the left eye; shot in left side, and shot in the back. 

Geronimo's message  to Fairgoers as well as to is fellow American Indians, was one of change.  Seeing the `light' of civilization,  the smart Indian Chief knew that resisiting the `white man,'  was futile. Geronimo understood that all the  battles and wars did not work; the Indian  nation  would have  to learn  to  accommodate.  

In 1909, after 23 years in captivity, Geronimo died of pneumonia at Fort Sill. He was buried in the fort's Apache Indian Prisoner of War Cemetery. His name  lives on. 

According  to  lore, the Skull and Bones society members  (The Skulls and Bones society is  an elitist  `secret' society  founded by Yalemen in 1882), supposedly stole the bones of Geronimo from Fort Sill, Oklahoma during World War I. In 1986, former San Carlos Apache Chairman Ned Anderson received an anonymous letter with a photograph and a copy of a log book claiming that Skull & Bones held the skull. He met with Skull & Bones officials about the rumor; the group's attorney, Endicott P. Davidson, denied that the group held the skull, and said that the 1918 ledger saying otherwise was a hoax. The group offered Anderson a glass case with a skull of a ten-year-old boy, but Anderson refused it. In 2006, Marc Wortman discovered a 1918 letter from Skull & Bones member Winter Mead to F. Trubee Davison that claimed the theft was "exhumed" from Fort Sill by the club and was "safe" in the club's headquarters.[

In 2009, Ramsey Clark filed a lawsuit on behalf of people claiming to be Geronimo's descendants, against, among others, Yale University, Barack Obama, Robert Gates, and Skull and Bones, asking for the return of Geronimo's bones so they can  be reburied near the Indian leader's birthplace in southern New Mexico's Gila Wilderness.

A District of Columbia judge on July 27, 2010 dismissed the case. Yale has said it does not possess the remains, but that it cannot say whether any secret society — a separate entity — might have them. A representative of Skull and Bones has declined to comment on the matter.

Lee  Gaskins'   AT THE FAIR  The 1904 St. Louis World's   Fair  
                     Web  Design and Art/Illustration   copyrighted  2008 
The Apache Legend- Geronimo
Geronimo's signature on a postcard.
Please Click this Image  to  Read Geronimo's Unabridged Autobiography. 
Geronimo- His Life
 in his Own Words.
At  the bottom of this  article, is  a link  to  my Geronimo's  Unabridged Autobiography  page. 
Please Click this   to  Read Geronimo's Unabridged Autobiography.