Now Available

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Reading Recommendations

All Reviews by Kristy McCaffrey

(Note: I've included an Amazon link for each book but many are also available on other platforms such as Nook, iBooks and Kobo, as well as print.)

Jennifer Foehner Wells

For 60 years, NASA has been watching a derelict alien spacecraft drifting in the asteroid belt near Mars. When a mission is finally ready to make first contact, Dr. Jane Holloway—a linguist—is recruited to join the team of pilots, engineers and a doctor. When they finally reach the ship, labeled the Target, they find it deserted except for an entity that can communicate telepathically. Jane is the only one open to such contact and the crew soon becomes suspicious of her mental health. Dr. Alan Bergen, however, does believe her and attempts to aid her in understanding what happened to the race of beings on the spacecraft that were lost in a catastrophic incident. This is a fast-paced story filled with just enough science to satisfy the diehard sci-fi fans alongside a compelling romance between Jane and Bergen. I couldn’t put it down!

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The Comanchero's Bride
Kaye Spencer

Elizabeth White, heiress to a sizable fortune, is living in the wilds of Texas. Her family hopes to make her miserable enough to return home and marry the man they’ve chosen. Instead, Elizabeth finds a life with purpose and also meets the man of her heart, an ex-outlaw named Mingo Valderas. They soon become separated and she finds herself in Denver society with Grayson Beal, the detestable man she was supposed to wed. He won’t let her go—her family ties, social standing, and money will all but ensure his bid for the presidency. When Elizabeth flees Colorado to be with Mingo, they must make their way to Mexico staying as hidden as possible. This requires traversing ancient trails frequented by the Comanchero, men who live on the outside of the law. And Mingo is just such a man.

This tale has a strong heroine with a good heart and a hero determined to redeem himself for the woman he loves. Their love story will leave you longing for a happy ending. Beal is a richly-drawn and despicable villain, the historical details are superb, and the writing flawless. Ms. Spencer has outdone herself once again. If you’re looking for a gritty western with romance and valor, don’t miss this one!

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Tempt Fortune
Hebby Roman

In this historical romance, Angelina Herrera has fled Cuba to Key West in the hopes of forging an independent life free of a man’s dictates. Her plan is to build a cigar factory and support herself. Financial circumstances, however, force her into marriage with the enigmatic Alejandro Estava. Carrying scars from a fire that killed his wife and child, he is unrecognizable to Angelina and hides the fact that they had known one another many years prior. That he has long loved her only fuels his efforts to protect her from an alliance with an unscrupulous man. As a counterpoint to their romance, the story also showcases Angelina’s new friend, Destiny, and her courtship with Nathan Rodgers, a Navy captain.

Ms. Roman has written a lush and evocative tale, weaving in Cuban culture and history along with the early days of Key West society. Both heroes are swoon-worthy, the heroines are spunky and stubborn, and the love scenes steamy. It’s everything a romance should be and more. A wonderful read!

Amazon - Tempt Fortune

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Hot Work in Fry Pan Gulch
Jacquie Rogers

If you enjoy westerns and humor, then this is the book for you. Honey Beaulieu is full of grit, determination and sass—I guarantee you’ll fall in love with her. Growing up in a whorehouse owned by her mama, Honey is determined to not pursue the same line of work. Fortunately, her pa makes a living hunting bounties, and Honey shows a particular knack for it. She lands a job as Fry Pan Gulch’s deputy marshal, much to the chagrin of the men around her. You’ll cheer her on as she sets out to prove she has what it takes. When she meets handsome U.S. deputy marshal Sam Lancaster, a stubborn mule and a pickle barrel will have you laughing out loud. Ms. Rogers is one of the best western writers out there today and this book proves her talent once again. I thoroughly enjoyed it!

Amazon - Hot Work in Fry Pan Gulch

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Home Fires
Kirsten Lynn

With the Civil War ended, Cord Matthews heads to Montana Territory to begin anew. Believing his one and only true love is dead, he starts over but is never free from the heartbreak. Unbeknownst to him, Olivia Bartlett has survived, and through a twist of fate they find one another. While they both are determined to pick up their relationship from where it ended, they experience the usual growing pains of any couple learning to love and live together. When an unresolved issue from their past finds them, they must fight to see it through.

This tale is richly imagined, and Cord and Olivia are both headstrong and desperate for one another. Ms. Lynn has crafted a gripping romance on the western frontier. I highly recommend.

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No Greater Glory
Cindy Nord

This wonderful Civil War romance will have you turning the pages deep into the night. Widowed plantation owner Emaline McDaniels must contend with the sudden appearance of a bevy of Union soldiers determined to use her property as a stopover as they move south. Colonel Reece Cutteridge—commanding and resolute—finds himself falling under Emaline’s spell despite every effort otherwise. Against the backdrop of heartbreaking atrocities, they come together in a blaze of passion and need. Ms. Nord handles the details of the time period with ease, but it’s the tension and love between Emaline and Reece that will leave the most lasting impression. I truly enjoyed this book.

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The 5th Wave
Rick Yancey

After seeing the movie, I was hooked so I picked up the second book to learn what happens to all these great characters. After one chapter, however, I knew I’d need to read the first book. And I’m so glad I did! The adage is true here—the book is far better than the movie—but I’m stunned at the depth in the novel that was eliminated in translating it to the screen. So do yourself a favor and read this. I found the characters of Cassie, Evan and Ben engaging and compelling as they navigate the world after an alien invasion. With each successive wave, the enemy eliminates more and more humans, and the question, of course, is: What will be the 5th wave? The answer is quite clever and horrifying at the same time. I couldn't put this one down.

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Walking the Gobi: A 1,600-Mile Trek Across A Desert Of Hope And Despair
Helen Thayer

Ms. Thayer and her husband walked across the Gobi Desert, which sits on the border of Mongolia and China. This is all the more audacious because they’re both in their 60’s and 70’s. They plan and practice for the trek and are by no means unexperienced at a trip like this. But the unexpected does arise and Thayer shares these incidents with candor. I thoroughly enjoyed this book, feeling as if I’d made the journey with them. I’ll always think of their two camels—Tom and Jerry—with fondness.

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Look What The Wind Blew In
Ann Charles

In this romantic mystery, Dr. Angelica Garcia is searching ancient Mayan ruins looking for evidence to vindicate her mother’s reputation, who is deceased. By her side is her eagle-eyed father and a dedicated crew. When photojournalist Quint Parker arrives under the pretense of writing a story about the dig site, Angelica finds herself both suspicious and reluctantly attracted to the handsome reporter. Throw in an ex-husband trying to win her back and a Mayan curse creating paranoia and fear among her workers, and Angelica has her hands full. This story has it all—suspense, steamy romance, and an intriguing mystery involving the Maya culture. I couldn’t put it down! Another winner by Ann Charles.
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Race To Tibet
Sophie Schiller

In 1889, French explorer Gabriel Bonvalot set out to reach Tibet. At that time, no European had ever set foot in Lhasa. He was determined to enter the well-guarded city and meet the Dalai Lama himself. To gain the funds to go, he’s forced to bring along Prince Henri d’Orléans, a pretender to the French throne and a scandalous playboy. Joining them in a large caravan is Camille Dancourt, a young French woman searching for her husband who disappeared in Tibet and was never heard from again.

Ms. Schiller has taken historical fact and woven an exciting adventure story around it. Traversing through Russia and the Tian Shan and Atlyn Tagh Mountains, the expedition is plagued by harsh weather, altitude sickness, hostile Tibetans, and Chinese Mandarins who control all travel within the region. While Bonvalot’s ideals are lofty, he’s forced into thievery and violence to survive. It’s a harrowing journey, and there’s no doubt these early explorers were hardy souls. Prince Henri and Camille are not, but watching them grow and adapt throughout the trek adds a counterpoint to Bonvalot. There is also a side story involving a Buddhist princess that offers insight into the culture of Tibet. Today, we take for granted that westerners may enter the Himalaya region easily, but without men like Bonvalot this might never have come to be. It’s a fascinating tale of determination chasing after mythology. I won’t spoil the story by telling you whether Bonvalot reaches his destination or not, but rather I encourage you to immerse yourself in this thrilling adventure into another land and time.

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Father of the Bride
Marcy Waldenville

A wonderfully romantic read about wedding planner Kate Whitney and her ex-husband’s lawyer, Alex Blessing. When Kate must plan Amanda Blessing’s wedding—Alex’s daughter—she’s thrown together with a man she had learned to despise for taking everything from her in her divorce. To Alex’s confusion, he can’t remember Kate although he’s certain they’ve met. Their growing attraction will have you turning the pages until the end. A heartwarming love story with just the right amount of sexy.

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My Mozart
Juliet Waldron

This is the first book I’ve read about Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and it held me captivated from the start. Told from the perspective of Nanina Gottlieb, who first meets Mozart as a young girl, the story follows her childhood adoration of the musical genius to her passionate love for a man who will forever break her heart. Mozart is 18 years her senior, married, a womanizer and an alcoholic. But all these facts fall to the wayside to Gottlieb’s worship of the man. Rich with historic detail of 18th century Vienna and intricate aspects of Mozart’s famous compositions, it’s easy to fall under the same spell as Gottlieb. She knows loving Mozart will ultimately ruin her but she can’t stop her feelings. An accomplished singer, dancer and actress, she makes a living often reserved for unreputable women. Mozart dies when she is 17 and soon after she discovers she is pregnant. She comes to learn of at least two other illegitimate children Mozart had left behind. That the famous maestro didn’t love her exclusively causes deep pain, but until the end of her life she cannot hate him. It’s a heartbreaking tale. While certain parts of the story are no doubt fiction, it’s a testament to Waldron that there are no stumbling blocks in the presentation. An amazing book by a talented author.
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Alaina Claiborne: A British Agent Novel
MK McClintock

Alaina Claiborne is a strong-willed and likeable heroine, growing up in the English countryside with her aunt and uncle after witnessing the murder of her parents and a family friend when she was young. The details of that event, however, have been buried in her mind. When she meets her new neighbor, Tristan Sheffield, the attraction is immediate. Tristan is the British Agent of the title and is in search of the man who not only killed his father but also possibly Alaina’s parents as well. As the mystery unfolds in London and Virginia, Alaina’s memory slowly surfaces. She and Tristan marry under the pretense of protecting her but it soon becomes a true relationship.

Alaina Claiborne is filled with rich historical detail, a handsome and dashing hero, additional dashing fellow agents who will no doubt appear in future books, and a heroine with a sense of humor (she’s kidnapped no less than three times). An engaging tale filled with romance and intrigue!

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A Dip In The Ocean: Rowing Solo Across The Indian
Sarah Outen

A wonderful account of Sarah’s solo trek to row the Indian Ocean. She succeeded, becoming the first woman to do so, along with being the youngest. Her prose is immediate and invites you to be right along with her, from the decision to do it in the first place to the deep grief over the sudden loss of her father before the journey begins. You’ll feel as if you rowed the entire thing with her. I appreciated her focus on details—what her daily routine was like, how much she loved seeing the albatrosses that passed by, and her inability to ration her chocolate. You can’t help but admire her tenacity.

Thursday, May 19, 2016

A Cutter's Creek Romance Series

I'd like to welcome author Kari Trumbo to my blog today. She's participating in a great new series, along with the awesome Kit Morgan, Vivi Holt and Annie Boone. Kari, tell us more...

I am excited to announce the creation of the sweet historical world of Cutter’s Creek, Montana. The authors started with a picture of a little red chapel in the hills and created the town around that sweet little building used for worship and weddings, funerals and festivals. It is a place of hiding and healing. Four authors have teamed up from across the globe to bring you stories of hope and love.

The first four novellas introduce you to the town, the Chapel, and its lovely characters. The characters you will meet may appear in future novels. There will be times the authors will all publish at once, and others when they publish a book singly, but each one will be carefully crafted for you to be transported to Cutter’s Creek and a new story of love, struggle, and romance. Some will be short, others will be full length novels.
Kellys cover
The four novellas in this series are threaded together by a beautiful little red chapel nestled in the foothills of the Bighorn Mountains, Cutter’s Creek, Montana. The heroine in each of these novellas finds solace inside the walls of the building and the God it was built to serve. The chapel is the center of town and is an important landmark to the residents of Cutter’s Creek. Its unusual red color has become a symbol that all are welcome. In the future, it won’t always take center stage, but it is in each of the introductory novellas.
Karis cover
Romance seems just out of reach for these couples. At times, it’s as though they aren’t meant to be together. Sometimes, they’re too stubborn to see what’s right before their eyes. Each has a lesson to learn before they get the prize of happiness in love. These stand-alone, happily ever after stories will melt the coldest heart and make the disenchanted believe in love again. Be sure to follow us on Amazon!


Thursday, May 5, 2016

Mother's Day Sale!!

By Kristy McCaffrey

In honor of Mother's Day (in the U.S.), most of the American Mail-Order Brides books are on sale for 99 cents (digital versions). This unprecedented 50-book series was written by 45 of your favorite western romance authors today.

To find all copies on sale, click here.

Includes my book, Alice: Bride of Rhode Island

Alice: Bride of Rhode Island is thirteenth in the 50-book American Mail-Order Brides series.

Fleeing her stepfather and an arranged marriage in Newport, Alice Endicott finds work as a seamstress at the Brown Textile Mill near Boston. When a devastating fire destroys the factory, she and all the girls face dire unemployment circumstances. But hope arrives when their manager, Roberta McDaniel, shares the Grooms’ Gazette with them. Each woman will choose a husband and become a mail-order bride. As Alice’s friends—Lottie, Leora, Judith, Beth, Lessie and Josie—embrace the idea, she too becomes caught up in the excitement of a grand new adventure.

When fisherman Frank Martel contacts her, Alice can’t pass up the opportunity to return to Rhode Island despite her stepfather’s presence. Upon arriving at the train station in Tiverton, however, Frank neglects to meet her.

James Martel is shocked to find a woman at the rail depot claiming to be his brother’s fiancée. Even more surprising is her connection to a man who ruined James’ father years before. When Frank confesses that he can no longer wed Alice, James steps forward to fill the role since the beautiful young woman holds the key to avenging the Martel name.

Can Alice convince her new husband that their marriage is worth saving once she discovers his subterfuge? And will James learn that love is more important than revenge?

A sweet romance set in 1890 America.

Available at Amazon

Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Amazon Giveaway for THE WREN

By Kristy McCaffrey

Would you like to win a copy of THE WREN (Wings of the West Series, Book One)? I'm giving away a bunch of Kindle editions over at Amazon. Click the link to enter. #AmazonGiveaway  

NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. Ends the earlier of May 14, 2016 11:59 PM PDT, or when all prizes are claimed. See Official Rules

* * * *

Captured by Comanche as a child, Molly Hart was assumed dead. Ten years later, Texas Ranger Matt Ryan finds a woman with the same blue eyes.

"A rousing, spicy story of long lost love in the gritty Old West. The Wren will make your pulse flutter and your heart sing." ~ Ann Charles, USA Today Bestselling Author of the Award-winning Deadwood Mystery Series

Ten years have passed since Molly Hart’s ranch was attacked, her folks murdered and she was abducted. Now, at nineteen, she’s finally returning home to North Texas after spending the remainder of her childhood with a tribe of Kwahadi Comanche. What she finds is a deserted home coated with dust and the passage of time, the chilling discovery of her own gravesite, and the presence of a man she thought never to see again.

Matt Ryan is pushed by a restless wind to the broken-down remains of the Hart ranch. Recently recovered from an imprisonment that nearly ended his life, the drive for truth and fairness has all but abandoned him. For ten years he faithfully served the U.S. Army and the Texas Rangers, seeking justice for the brutal murder of a little girl, only to find closure and healing beyond his grasp. Returning to the place where it all began, he’s stunned to encounter a woman with the same blue eyes as the child he can’t put out of his mind.

A steamy historical western romance set in 1877 Texas.

2003 CAPA WINNER The Romance Studio ~ Best New Author Traditional
2004 Holt Medallion FINALIST ~ Best First Book
2004 Texas Gold FINALIST ~ Historical Category

“…McCaffrey’s mastery of setting and historic details gives this western gritty realism.” ~ RT Book Reviews

“…a heart wrenchingly emotional story…” ~ Coffeetime Romance

“The main characters were well matched and the secondary characters were just as good. Don’t miss this incredible read in what is sure to be a great series to follow.” ~ The Romance Studio

“Handsome, rugged heroes, strong heroines and a super storyline make The Wren a keeper.” ~ The Best Reviews

“…well written…captivated me from the first line to the poignant last.” ~ Novelspot

Sunday, May 1, 2016

Free Historical Western Romance Novellas

By Kristy McCaffrey

I got together with six of my author friends to offer a great deal. Each of us is sharing a historical western romance novella absolutely FREE. There's no catch except that you may opt to sign-up for our newsletters.

Don’t Go Snaring My Heart by Jacquie Rogers
She snared him—but he stole her heart.
Rating: Sweet

The Crow and the Coyote by Kristy McCaffrey
During Hallowtide, Jack Boggs faces Navajo sorcery and an evil bandito.
Rating: Spicy

The Badge and the Bride by Livia J. Washburn
Was she just bait for the Texas Ranger’s trap?
Rating: Sweet

The Last Three Miles by Kathleen Rice Adams
He’s domineering. She’s ambitious. For your own safety, stand back.
Rating: Spicy

Outlaw’s Kiss by Cheryl Pierson
An outlaw’s kiss can make an angel fall.
Rating: Sweet

The Handsomest Man in the Country by Nancy Radke
She planned to marry the Handsomest Man in the Country.
Rating: Sweet

Bride Brigade: Josephine by Caroline Clemmons
Holding on to her past will ruin her future.
Rating: Sweet

To claim your prize, click here. Choose one book (or all seven) and follow the link to the download page. Choose the type of file you need. For example, Kindles use mobi files. Once the file is downloaded onto your computer, you can transfer it to your Kindle by emailing it as an attachment to your device. Every Kindle has a unique email address that can be found under Settings. If you have any questions, don't hesitate to contact me at

Giveaway ends May 2nd at midnight!

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Into The Land Of Shadows Goodreads Giveaway

By Kristy McCaffrey

I'm giving away 5 autographed print copies of INTO THE LAND OF SHADOWS over at Goodreads. To enter, click the link below.

“…as if ‘Romancing The Stone’ and ‘The Good, the Bad and the Ugly’ and ‘Dances With Wolves’ got together and had a kid.” ~ Armenia, Reading Alley Reviewer

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Into the Land of Shadows by Kristy McCaffrey

Into the Land of Shadows

by Kristy McCaffrey

Giveaway ends May 05, 2016.
See the giveaway details at Goodreads.
Enter Giveaway

In the land of the Navajo, spirits and desire draw Ethan and Kate close, leading them deeper into the shadows and to each other.

“Into the Land of Shadows is a must read. Kristy McCaffrey tells a story that is engaging and edge-of-the-seat gripping. Her vivid descriptions and great cast of characters, with exceptional dialogue, bring this story to life.” ~ Cherokee, Coffee Time Romance & More
Kate Kinsella has no choice but to go after Charley Barstow and talk some sense into him. After all, he's skipped town, leaving a string of broken hearts and his pregnant fiancée, Agnes McPherson. But Kate didn't count on being kidnapped by a band of criminals along the way!

Ethan Barstow is hot on his younger brother's trail, too. He rescues Kate, believing her to be Charley's fiancée, and suggests they try to find him together. Kate's reluctance has him baffled.

All hell breaks loose when they discover Charley in search of a copper mine—not wishing to be found by anyone; certainly not Kate! But, then, Kate was always trouble—and now she's brought it to his doorstep, with tales of a pregnant fiancée and his brother Ethan, who he hasn't seen in five years.

Can Ethan and Kate ever find their own love and happiness with one another through the dark deception and hurt? Or will they both return INTO THE LAND OF SHADOWS...
A steamy historical western romance set in 1893 Arizona Territory.

Carolyn Readers’ Choice Award Finalist
“Kristy McCaffrey brings us a story with heart and spirit, characters that live, and an understanding of the place and people that far surpasses a traditional romance…” ~ Marcy Waldenville, author of Tears of the Damned

“…a haunting story with suspense, passion, and excellent character building.” ~ Jane Bowers, Romance Reviews Today

“With a vividly painted background, engaging and compelling characters and pages that just fly by, Into The Land Of Shadows is a superb read for any western or historical romance lover.” ~ Wendy, Romance Junkies

“Tighten that cinch because Into The Land Of Shadows is a fast paced ride.” ~ Emmanuelle Wilder, author of French Crème and French Heat

“The author’s descriptions of the Arizona desert and the Indians who inhabit it are beautiful. You almost feel as if you are there. There are surprises, an element of the paranormal, which is done exceptionally well, and romance. If you love Westerns, then don’t miss this one.” ~ Linda Tonis, Paranormal Romance Guild

“McCaffrey has yet another hit with this one.” ~ Jonel Boyko, Pure Jonel Blog

“…action-adventure, mystery, and romance…” ~ Susan Frances, BTS eMag

“...a good old-fashioned western, a romance and an adventure...I loved it!” ~ Willa Jemhart, author of Drowning in Deception

“McCaffrey's novels spirit you off to the Old West, holds you captive then rescues you by the most charming of heroes, leaving you breathless and wanting more.” ~ Joan Mauch, author of Halifax and The Mangled Spoon

Monday, April 25, 2016

Massacre At Camp Grant

By Kristy McCaffrey

Camp Grant in 1870
In the 1860’s and 1870’s, the state of unrest in the southern Arizona Territory varied widely. At times, depredations by Apache Indians was severe and led to an increased military presence in the area. There existed, however, little unity among the tribes, and some of the more peaceful bands suffered. The massacre at Camp Grant is one such example.

On April 30, 1871, a group of Pinal and Arivaipa Apache Indians were slaughtered at Camp Grant, a crucial garrison located at the outlet of Arivaipa Creek where it meets the San Pedro River, about sixty miles northeast of Tucson.

Royal Emerson Whitman
Several months prior, First Lieutenant Royal Emerson Whitman assumed command of Camp Grant. A respected officer from the northern side of the Civil War, he likely viewed his new commission as reaching the end of the earth. Camp Grant was nothing more than a rectangle of filthy adobe buildings around a dusty parade ground.

In February 1871, five old Indian women from a band of Arivaipa Apaches came to the post under a white flag, searching for a boy they believed was held prisoner. Whitman treated the women kindly, and they stayed for two days. When they left, they asked if they could return with more of their people. Whitman agreed. Eight days later they came with more Indians, along with goods to sell. Whitman again treated them well. The Apache said that many of their band wanted to come in, and Whitman promised that he would protect them.

A few days later, more Apache arrived, represented by their chief, Eskiminzin. Also present was a Pinal chief known to the whites as Capitán Chiquito, and a chief called Santo. Whitman found Eskiminzin to be friendly. His people were weary of the constant danger from the troops and wanted to settle down in their ancestral territory along Arivaipa Creek. They wanted peace and asked Whitman to give them tools and issue rations until a harvest was ready. This was a common promise given to Indians at the time so the request wasn’t out of line.

Unfortunately, Whitman had no authority to make this peace and explained this to Eskiminzin. He suggested they go to a reservation in the White Mountains. But not all Apache got along, and Eskiminzin refused. Whitman decided to take a chance with the thought that if he could pacify this band then others might follow. He agreed for them to come in and that he would issue a pound of beef and a pound of corn or flour per day per adult. He would also allow them to gather mescal as needed. In the meantime, he would write his commander to gain the required permission. He immediately sent word to Department Commander George Stoneman at Drum Barracks, California.

At the beginning of March, Eskiminzin returned with his entire band of Arivaipa Apaches—about 150 people. Soon, that number doubled, and finally over 500 Indians had come in. Whitman could see that the Indians were desperately poor so he made arrangements for the Arivaipa’s to gather hay for the fort, at the rate of one penny a pound. In two months, over 150 tons was brought in, worth $3000, which made the Apache wealthy. Before long, it wasn’t just the women and children submitting to labor, but the warriors as well.

Whitman was firm but fair with the Indians. After a time, he relaxed restrictions on them, and relations were good with nearby ranchers, who even hired on some of the Apache. By all accounts, his unofficial reservation was flourishing. But by the end of March, Whitman had still not heard from General Stoneman.

Whitman kept an eye out for treachery, but he could discover no wrongdoing when it came to the Indians. They were happy and content. Other soldiers at the post, civilian employees of the army, and even veteran Indian haters all agreed that something profound was occurring here. The Indians trusted Whitman. Only once did he overstep himself when he asked if they would provide Apache scouts to help fight other, more hostile, Apache bands. Eskiminzin said no, stating that they were not at war with those other bands.

Around the beginning of April, a new commander arrived to take over Camp Grant. Whitman briefed Captain Frank Standwood on the situation. Standwood approved and instructed him to carry on. In mid-April, Whitman received word that his request to General Stoneman had been misfiled and therefore not approved. It’s been theorized that Stoneman did read the letter, but refused to act one way or another regarding it. Politics were delicate when it came to providing a feeding-station to Indians who might then go out and pillage and raid.

On April 30, only Whitman and a small garrison of fifty men were in residence at Camp Grant because Captain Standwood had left on an extensive scouting mission days earlier. Word came that a large force of armed citizens from Tucson were on the loose and were believed to be headed to Camp Grant and the Apache rancheria. Word would have reached Whitman sooner, but the leaders of the Tucson mob—the influential Oury family on the white part and the Elias family on the Mexican side—had set sentries and sealed the road to insure their success. Reacting quickly, Whitman sent word to the Indians but he was too late.

The massacre was ruthless. The mob consisted of six whites, forty-eight Mexicans, and ninety-four Papago Indians. Men, women, and dogs were clubbed. Those that escaped were shot. The assault was over in thirty minutes.

Whitman did what he could. He tried to contact survivors who’d managed to escape. He sent the post surgeon to help any who lived, but unfortunately there were none. The scene was grisly. Skulls had been crushed, women sexually assaulted and mutilated. Infants had been shot. Whitman took on the task of burying the 125 dead, of which only eight were men. Slowly, survivors returned.

Amazingly, the surviving Pinal and Arivaipa Apache continued to express their confidence in Whitman. Eskiminzin, deeply grieved over losing his family, nevertheless remained steadfast in his determination not to retaliate with war. Some believe it is a testament to the goodwill that Whitman had extended to them, a policy that had been strikingly effective, even in the face of this unspeakable tragedy.

As a side note: Twenty-nine Apache children went missing that day. The mothers implored Whitman to get them back. Two of the children managed to escape. Five were later recovered from Arizona citizens. The remaining twenty-two were taken to Sonora, Mexico and sold. Also, because this was labeled a massacre by the military, President Grant told Arizona Territorial Governor A.P.K. Safford that if the perpetrators weren’t brought to justice then he would place the area under martial law. In October 1871, 100 assailants were indicted under Tucson law, but because the ensuing trial focused solely on Apache depredations, all of the men were found not guilty.