Mangas Coloradas

Mangas Coloradas (mängˈgäs kōlōräˈħäs) [key] [Span., = red sleeves], c.1797–1863, chief of the Mimbrenos group of Apache of SW New Mexico. Many of the Mimbrenos were massacred by trappers in 1837 as a result of the bounty for Apache scalps offered by the Mexican authorities. Mangas Coloradas, a natural leader because of his intelligence and size (unusually tall for an Apache, he was over 6 ft/180 cm), united the tribes, led them in a successful war of revenge, and cleared the area of settlers. When the Americans took possession of New Mexico in 1846, he pledged friendship to these conquerors of his Mexican enemies, but peace ended as the gold rush began. In 1851 a series of incidents culminated in hostilities when Mangas Coloradas suffered a humiliating flogging at the hands of some miners. Leading his warriors, he waged continuous warfare until he was finally captured and killed by Union soldiers in 1863. His name sometimes appears erroneously as Magnus Colorado.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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