Contributed by Arizona Historical Society Library and Archives, Tucson
Geronimo! Revered and Reviled (The Man Behind the Legend)
Once I moved about like the wind. Now I surrender to you and that is all.
-- Geronimo, on surrendering to Gen. George Crook, quoted from Once They Moved Like the Wind by David Roberts.
Mention Geronimo and what comes to mind may be a stereotypical image of a renegade Indian leader, an icon rather than a man. The real Geronimo, his actions and his decisions, are far more complex and were influenced by his life, his dedication to his family and people and the vagaries of the political and military forces arrayed against him. Geronimo! Revered and Reviled (The Man Behind the Legend), an exhibit that opened at the Arizona History Museum June 11, 2010, features materials from the Charles B. Gatewood and C.S. Fly photo collections at the Arizona Historical Society Library and Archives, Southern Division, as well as artifacts from the Arizona History Museum ranging from Geronimo's Springfield "trap door" rifle to Fly's 8" by 10" glass-plate camera. Coinciding with the 125th anniversary of the end of armed conflict between the Apache and the U.S. military, the exhibit explores Geronimo's role in the U.S. conflict with the Apache in the late 1880s and the imprisonment and exile experienced by Geronimo and his people after his "conditional surrender" to U.S. forces on Sept. 4, 1886. The exhibit also covers Geronimo in his later years when his transformation from warrior to cultural icon began in earnest as he made appearances at many events including the inaugural parade of Pres. Theodore Roosevelt in 1905.
This Arizona Memory Project online exhibit, created in conjunction with Geronimo! Revered and Reviled (The Man Behind the Legend), features images of Geronimo, other Apache leaders, U.S. military leaders and the Apache scouts who worked for the U.S. Cavalry. Also included are rare C.S. Fly images from the 1886 Canon de los Embudos negotiations to end hostilities, an event that saw Geronimo and Gen. George Crook sitting down face to face to parley. Finally, the exhibit also shows scenes of Apache imprisonment and exile, images of artifacts including Geronimo's rifle, and a copy of Geronimo's signature and maps.