100 years later, Geronimo may return to NM - Ruidoso News

Full story: Ruidoso News

The 100th anniversary of the death of legendary Chiricahua Apache leader and warrior Geronimo will be marked with an attempt to "bring him home." Carlos Melendrez of Las Cruces said efforts to "repatriate" ...

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A Mescalero Tribal Member

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#1
Feb 20, 2009
 
Myself as well as my family think that what Harlyn Geronimo is doing is wrong. All tribal members know that once a burial has taken place it is to remain undisturbed. Harlyn Geronimo is not even a 'Geronimo' he changed his last name from 'Via' to Geronimo. He claims he is a medicine man which we think is a lot of BS because he does not even no anything about being a medicine man. He has not been hired for many coming of age ceremonies for girls. What he is doing is an embarassment to the tribe. As old as he is he should know better. He should let the REAL Geronimo descendents decide what to do. The president of the tribe said that he will not have much support with this deal, I think that is true. All people know not to bother a gravesite. Even younger children know that. Shows how much respect he has.
question

Broken Arrow, OK

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#2
Feb 20, 2009
 
When you say he changed his name, do you mean he is not a real relative? How is he saying he is related to Geronimo? I agree, the grave should be left alone. Serves no purpose to disturb him.
Sunny

Broken Arrow, OK

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#3
Feb 20, 2009
 
So, Geronimo should stay in the internment camp where he was held against his will and then buried instead of being brought home? Would you take the same stand if a native American was found buried in Europe after being held a prisoner of war? Is it better to let the dead stay where they fell or bring them home? I don't have a strong opinion as it is usually the living we hear from and not the dead.
Grave-robbing bushies

Ruidoso, NM

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#4
Feb 20, 2009
 
This story was on mainline media earlier this week.
http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/29265600/...
Btw, there was a glaring error in the Las Cruces paper (4th graf) in which it calls Ramsey Clark the attorney general of the United States. Also typo in the word Tuesday. Good grief, what ever happened to editing.
Anonymous

United States

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#5
Feb 20, 2009
 
question wrote:
When you say he changed his name, do you mean he is not a real relative? How is he saying he is related to Geronimo? I agree, the grave should be left alone. Serves no purpose to disturb him.
Yes, he is not any part of the Geronimo clan. both of his parents have different last names.
Anonymous

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#6
Feb 20, 2009
 
Sunny wrote:
So, Geronimo should stay in the internment camp where he was held against his will and then buried instead of being brought home? Would you take the same stand if a native American was found buried in Europe after being held a prisoner of war? Is it better to let the dead stay where they fell or bring them home? I don't have a strong opinion as it is usually the living we hear from and not the dead.
As a native american there are many things that we believe in. Not bothering someone's grave is one of the many things. You would have to be a member of our tribe to understand what we are taught. We have many traditions.Just as we said before. Once a person is buried that person's grave is not to be disturbed.
interesting

Brownfield, TX

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#7
Feb 21, 2009
 
interesting story on the Geronimo story:
http://www.reporternews.com/news/2009/feb/20/...
question

Broken Arrow, OK

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#8
Feb 21, 2009
 
Thank you for clarifying that he is NOT a relative. I do hope they leave him alone and honor your Native traditions.
Sunny

Broken Arrow, OK

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#9
Feb 22, 2009
 
Given that there are Native American ceremonies that deal with the disinterment of bodies for relocation, what are the exceptions?
old scout

United States

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#10
Feb 23, 2009
 
his name was NOT CROSS EYES nor OLD BOY as is your grandfather
elder apache

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#11
Feb 23, 2009
 
Kate Geronimo, and daughter Lenna Geronimo came to Mescalero in 1889 and then Kate had a son named Robert Crosseyes for old Apache Scout named Old Boy also called Crosseyes, as was the Apache custom giving names for personal attributes, Robert was born 1890 whose named was changed to Robert Geronimo when he was a teenager. Talk about name change!
Correcting Lineage

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#12
Feb 23, 2009
 
For clarification on the lineage...

Ihtedda and Geromino had a child, Lenna, during his fight with the Mexicans and Americans. Ihtedda was a Mescalero. She was held captive during the POW's days but was allowed to return to Mescalero with her daughter, Lenna.

Ihtedda returned to Mescalero in 1889 with Lenna.

They are correct here in stating that Cross Eyes was Ihtedda's new husband upon return to Mescalero, immediately. Ihtedda assumed the name, Katie Crosseyes.

Robert was born soon after arriving back to Mescalero. He had the name Robert Cross Eyes. He changed it later to Geronimo.

Lenna married Juan Via, a Lipan, and had several children, Annie Via, Jaunito Via and Percy Via.

Harlyn is the son of Jaunito Via. According to this lineage, he is the Great-Grandson of Geronimo. He later changed his name to Geronimo.

The Plaintiffs in this case are descendents from Juanito and Percy Via.
Texas

Odessa, TX

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#13
Feb 24, 2009
 
Great history lessons here! Thank you. Hope the elders are writing down this info. in order to keep history straight.
New Mexico Photographer

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#14
Mar 3, 2009
 
I don't claim to be an expert but I study Apache history and know personally several descendants of Robert Geronimo. I've been following the burial debate closely and have been aware for many years of the feud between Harlyn Geronimo and Robert Geronimo's family. I'm happy it is now public knowledge and that Harlyn can no longer be portrayed as the official Geronimo family spokesman. It is also now clear that Harlyn doesn't speak for the Apache community. Lariat Geronimo has spoken well and I'm glad to see Robert's descendants stepping up to the plate.

It is my opinion that the message from "Correcting Lineage, Mescalero, NM" is 100% correct. At the very least, it is extremely credible. Thank you for posting this important information! Elder Apache is also credible. Kate / Ih-tedda was pregnant with Robert when she returned to Mescalero in 1889 with a group of Mescalero Apache, most of whom had been captured in wife raids by Geronimo's and Naiche's band.

It is not my role to say whether these Apache posters are right or wrong, only to agree that their accounts are in line with the history I believe is accurate.
New Mexico Photographer

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#15
Mar 3, 2009
 
To fill in the gaps of my own research, are you Mescalero folks saying that Harlyn is descended from Juan Via and Ih-tedda (Kate)--not Geronimo and Ih-tedda? This is very interesting...

I haven't yet met Harlyn Geronimo but find him both eloquent and credible. But I don't like his claiming to be the spokesman for the Geronimo family when I know he isn't. Harlyn speaks only for himself and his immediate family. At least this is my impression.
New Mexico Photographer

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#16
Mar 3, 2009
 
Oops, I made a big mistake and apologize for my confusing last remark! It was Lenna who married the Lipan Apache, Juan Via. Ih-tedda (Kate), Geronimo's former wife, married Crosseyes, whom I assume was Mescalero. Did they have children?

So Harlyn is still the grandson of Lenna, which makes him a Geronimo direct descendant, even though he changed his name in adulthood.

Family trees are confusing and I apologize for my embarrassing mistake. Sorry for wasting space and time...
anonymous2

Verona, Italy

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#17
Apr 30, 2009
 
what about william pellman aka monstie? is he a geronimo or not?
really

Mescalero, NM

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#18
May 1, 2009
 
The man (via) is not right in the mind. He goes around dressed like a starched tv indian and everyone knows his history not lineage but history. He is a cheat a lier and is in love with him self. You should have seen him carrying on at the night club in cruces and it wasnt with his wife. He stirs desention and wants for attention.
A Mescalero Tribal Member wrote:
Myself as well as my family think that what Harlyn Geronimo is doing is wrong. All tribal members know that once a burial has taken place it is to remain undisturbed. Harlyn Geronimo is not even a 'Geronimo' he changed his last name from 'Via' to Geronimo. He claims he is a medicine man which we think is a lot of BS because he does not even no anything about being a medicine man. He has not been hired for many coming of age ceremonies for girls. What he is doing is an embarassment to the tribe. As old as he is he should know better. He should let the REAL Geronimo descendents decide what to do. The president of the tribe said that he will not have much support with this deal, I think that is true. All people know not to bother a gravesite. Even younger children know that. Shows how much respect he has.
Sameera Thurmond

Madison, AL

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#19
May 5, 2009
 
I'd like to see a full genealogy of Geronimo's wives and children. I think I could better understand it if the information were in some organized form. Does anyone know where I can find such material. Even more, I'd love to meet any one of his existing family members. WHAT AN HONOR!!!!!!!!!!
New Mexico Photographer

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#20
May 5, 2009
 
Geronimo's descendants are well documented. It's generally believed he had seven to ten wives in his lifetime, but his only children to have children, grandchildren, etc., are his two children with his Mescalero wife, Ih-tedda, US name Kate (died 1954). Their daughter Lenna Via (1887-1918), also spelled Lana, had two sons and a daughter. Their son Robert Geronimo (1889-1966) had four or five children. All but one is still living. Robert's are the largest group of descendants and they have publicly stated they oppose Harlyn Geronimo's (Via) campaign to disturb the grave and are taking legal action to stop him.

Everyone is rooted in the Mescalero Apache Reservation in southern New Mexico. Most family members are very private and don't exploit the name or clamor for publicity or special treatment. Anyone else claiming to be a descendant is likely mistaken. I believe the above information is correct.

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