Apache en route to Florida as prisoners of war in September 1886. This picture was taken near San Antonio, Texas.

100 Years Later: Fort Sill Apache Still Fighting to Return to Homelands

Fort Sill Apache Tribe

Today marks the 100th anniversary of the release from prisoner of war status of the Chiricahua - Warm Springs Apache Tribe, now known as the Fort Sill Apache Tribe.

 “We are commemorating and reflecting on the strength of our ancestors and on their desire to return to our homelands in southwest New Mexico and Arizona,” said Fort Sill Apache Tribal Chairman Jeff Haozous. “Although the Tribe was released 100 years ago, we’re still struggling to fulfill their dream to return to our rightful home.”

In 2011, 97 years after its release, the Tribe was granted its only reservation in southern New Mexico by the U.S. Department of the Interior. The Tribe is seeking to build a gaming facility to generate funds to bring its people home. Residents of the area support the Tribe’s return and the jobs that the project will bring to the economically-depressed region.

“We’re closer to our home than we have ever been,” said Haozous. “Our ancestors didn’t give up and neither will we. With patience and perseverance, we will return to our home.”


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Michael Madrid's picture
Michael Madrid
Submitted by Michael Madrid on
I'm from southern New Mexico and while I'm ecstatic that our past governor invited the N'de to come home, it doesn't surprise me that they ended up in Akela. It's barren country there and they really want to open up a casino, but are being blocked by the State. The nearest NDN run casino is in Mescalero and is run by that branch of Apache. I don't know how the Chiricahuas can make a go of business in the barren area around Akela, and a casino could possibly attract the "wrong crowd" as the area is heavily populated by smugglers coming in from Mexico, but they need a source of income or it will just be just another case of moving NDNs onto land that nobody wants.

galtyboy's picture
Submitted by galtyboy on
Every person deserves to have their own 'Land', to live on, to die on, to bury on, to pray on.